The 15-cent Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929-1968) commemorative stamp was first available on January 13, 1979, at Atlanta, Georgia. Jerry Pinkney designed the stamp.
Martin Luther King, assassinated in 1968 by James Earl Ray, is celebrated as the inspirational leader of the early Civil Rights Movement in the United States. King was born in Atlanta, Georgia, and attended Morehouse College, Crozer Theological Seminary, and Boston University. He was minister at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery in 1955, and coordinated the Montgomery bus boycott. He moved to Atlanta, Georgia, to serve as co-pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in 1959, and from there he helped organize Civil Rights demonstrations and voter registration in Alabama and Georgia.
This stamp is part of the Black Heritage Stamp Series. Initiated in 1978, the USPS continues to issue a stamp featuring a notable Black American every February in conjunction with Black History Month and at other times during the year.