On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks was arrested in Montgomery, AL, for refusing to give up her seat on a public bus to a white man. Her simple act of defiance became a symbol of courage and inspired thousands of Americans to join the Civil Rights Movement. Her work with Martin Luther King, Jr., and the NAACP has been honored with numerous accolades including the prestigious Congressional Gold Medal and Spingam Medal. Upon her death in 2005, she became the first woman and second African American to lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC.
On February 4, in honor of what would have been her 100th birthday, the United States Postal Service will release a Forever Stamp honoring the extraordinary woman. The stamp is the second in a series of three civil rights stamps celebrating freedom, courage and equality and being issued this year. Last month, the USPS issued a stamp honoring the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and, later this year, will recognize the 50th anniversary the March on Washington.
The First-Day-of-Issue ceremony will take place during the National Day of Courage honoring Rosa Parks at the Henry Ford in Dearborn, MI, where the Montgomery, AL, bus is on permanent display.
The stamp can be ordered online at: www.usps.com/stamps
You can purchase the stamp at your local post office beginning Monday, February 4, 2013.
The stamp art, a gouache painting on illustration board, is a portrait of Parks emphasizing her quiet strength. A 1950s photograph served as the basis for the stamp portrait. Artist Thomas Blackshear II created an original painting for the stamp, which was designed by art director Derry Noyes.