Pioneer women's educator Mary Lyon was featured on the 2-cent Great Americans Series regular stamp issued February 28, 1987, in South Hadley, Massachusetts, home of Mount Holyoke College, which she founded.
Ron Adair of Richardson, Texas, designed the stamp, the 37th in the series. He also designed the 15-cent Everett Dirksen and 20-cent John Hanson commemorative stamps, both issued in 1981, and the 1-cent Margaret Mitchell stamp in the Great Americans Series, issued in 1986.
Mary Lyon's efforts were a major factor in the spread of higher education for women in the United States. The strongest influence on elementary and secondary education in the East during the mid-1800's came through the many students from Mary Lyon's schools who went out to teach.
She organized Wheaton College in 1834 in Norton, Massachusetts, and founded Mount Holyoke in 1837 by raising more than $12,000 — enough to construct a five-story building that housed a faculty of four and a first class of eighty young women.
When she died twelve years later, she left behind a permanent institution of advanced education endowed with $68,000, filled with able students, and staffed by a corps of dedicated teachers.
Art director for the stamps was Jack Williams; modeler was Clarence Holbert; typographer was Bradbury Thompson; engravers were Joseph S. Creamer, Jr., (vignette) and Robert G. Culin, Sr. (lettering and numerals). The intaglio process was used. The stamps were issued in panes of 100.
Postal Bulletin (January 22, 1987).