USPS to unveil commemorative Mockingbird stamp and envelope

Joining forces with the Alabama Humanities Foundation and Samford University, the USPS will release a pictorial cancellation stamp and cachet envelope commemorating the 50th anniversary of the film classic, To Kill a Mockingbird.

Designed exclusively for the USPS by world renowned artist, Nicolosi, the stamp and envelope are to be unveiled on the Samford University campus at noon on October 20, at Harwell G. Davis Library. Nicolosi will be present to unveil the artwork.

Nicolosi was chosen to create the pictorial cancellation stamp and commemorative cachet envelope because of his work’s “caliber and provenance,” said Tonya Hadley of the USPS.

The focal point of the stamp is the Monroeville courthouse, fictional scene of the 1962 film based on the Alabama-born novel by Harper Lee. In addition to the iconic courthouse, the envelope gives another nod to Monroeville and the state, dubbing it, “Lower Alabama. The Other L.A.”

“We were absolutely thrilled to co-sponsor the unveiling of Nicolosi’s art on this pictorial cancellation stamp and commemorative cachet envelope,” said Alabama Humanities Foundation Executive Director Armand DeKeyser. Nicolosi, who is from Chicago, has become a friend to AHF, donating Mockingbird artwork auctioned in a fundraiser and getting involved in AHF’s lecture series, Lessons of Mockingbird.

“I am humbled to have been given this opportunity to lend my God-given talent to the US Postal Service and the great people of Alabama as they celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the 1962 American Classic To Kill A Mockingbird,” Nicolosi said. “I am particularly honored to give back to Harper Lee and her beloved, Alabama.”

Monroeville Mayor Michael Kennedy thanked Nicolosi for his work to pay tribute to Lee and Mockingbird’s hometown. “Nicolosi, thank you for everything you are doing to promote Monroeville. You are a great friend and ambassador of Monroeville.” A similar event was held in April in Monroeville.

Nicolosi is known around the world for his original style of portraiture, including those of His Royal Highness, Prince Charles of Wales, Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan, opera star Placido Domingo, basketball legend Bill Russell, Marlon Brando and a who’s who of other stars of screen and stage.

He began working with Alabama Humanities Foundation after Lisa Narrell-Mead, secretary of the organization, solicited his help in producing artwork to commemorate the 50th Anniversary celebration in Monroeville and AHF events surrounding it.

It led to his meeting Lee for the first time and resulted in his production of a documentary, Song of the Mockingbird: Monroeville Memories.

Nicolosi calls the novel Lee’s “love letter to the world.” He describes the documentary as a love letter from the world back to her. Filmed exclusively inside the iconic Mockingbird courthouse with interviews from those who know Lee best, some had never spoken of her or the book in such a public way before this film.

A private screening of that documentary, which was filmed at the Monroeville courthouse, will be held on the evening of Oct. 20 at 7 at Samford’s Brock Recital Hall. Further information on the documentary showing may be found at samford.edu and alabamahumanities.org.

Following the screening, Nicolosi and Professor Nancy Grisham Anderson will have a “talk back” with the audience, discussing the lessons learned from Mockingbird.

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