The U.S. Postal Service this week will honor the 50th anniversary of the Martin Luther King Jr.-inspired March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom by unveiling a new stamp to commemorate the event.
The artwork, which has not been shown publicly, shows marchers against the background of the Washington Monument, with placards calling for equal rights and jobs for all, according to a USPS statement. The unveiling will occur 10:30 a.m. Friday at the Newseum.
The Postal Service created the new Forever stamp as part of a three-part set to celebrate the civil rights movement this year. The other two stamps commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation that freed slaves, and the 100th anniversary of the birth of Rosa Parks, the African American activist who refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Ala. bus in 1955.
The 1963 March on Washington was another milestone in the civil rights movement, one that King called “the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.”
Congress and President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act less than one year after the march, desegregating public institutions and prohibiting job discrimination. The following year, the Voting Rights Act became law, providing federal oversight of voting rights in the South.
The Postal Service is using social media to get the word out about the March on Washington stamp and to encourage the public to participate in celebrating the historic event. Individuals can add their Facebook or Twitter profiles to the USPS’s March on Washington mosaic, with each entry unveiling a small piece of the stamp artwork.
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