The US Postal Service has honored 36th African-American greats in its Black Heritage stamp series. Add the legendary Shirley Chisholm. The late activist and politician is now No. 37 as USPS prepares to issue a new Forever stamp featuring her likeness.
Chisholm paved the way for many African-American politicians. She was the first African-American woman elected to Congress. In 1972, she ran for president as a Democrat, making her the first African American to seek the nomination of a major political party.
According to Roy A. Betts, USPS spokesperson, Chisholm was a popular choice. “The public suggested Shirley Chisholm. The Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee passed the suggestion to the Postmaster General (Patrick Donahoe) who made the final approval,” he explains.
For people who might be unaware of Chisholm and her contributions, the USPS will provide background info on her. “Very soon, I expect a lesson plan to be posted on an Internet site established by the Postal Service for students, teachers as well as stamp collectors to learn more about Shirley Chisholm and a host of other stamp subjects,” says Betts.
The Chisholm Forever Stamp goes on sale Jan. 31st after being dedicated at Brooklyn Borough Hall in Brooklyn, NY. Chisholm was born in Brooklyn to immigrant parents; her father, Charles Christopher St. Hill, was born in British Guiana; her mother, Ruby Seale, was born in Barbados.
The stamp will be a limited edition, a collector’s item. “There were 33.5 million stamps were printed,” says Betts, who says that series remains successful.
“The stamps in the Black Heritage series are very popular and typically sell out. They all are best-sellers,” says Betts.
The new stamp goes on sale at Post Offices nationwide and online at usps.com/stamps or eBay.com/stamps.