Upon the death of Robert Kennedy in June 1968, John and Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. were often grouped together in memorial tributes, frequently presented as a "holy trinity" of martyred American icons. This set of stamps features the rare inclusion of Indian activist Mahatma Gandhi, who was shot and killed by a Hindu nationalist in 1948. As a revered leader dedicated to nonviolent civil disobedience, his presence here is certainly appropriate.
In welcoming Prime Minister Nehru of India to Washington, D.C., in November 1961, President Kennedy cited Gandhi alongside American figures such as Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt as leaders who "have had their fame and their reputation spread across their national frontiers and boundaries, and their reputation and the affection in which they are held...become world-wide." - Stephen Fagin, Curator
Included in the Museum's temporary exhibit, "Rebel Spirits: Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr.," about how these two men, from wildly different backgrounds, were finding common ground in their activism for the poor, for civil rights and for ending the war in Vietnam, this item will be on display on the Museum's seventh floor from June 5, 2018 to September 3, 2018. - Lindsey Richardson, Curator of Collections