US Postage Stamps in the 1950’s
America in the Fifties was a time of hope and uncertainty. World War II was over, and the role of the United States in that victory was unquestioned, as was the country’s military and economic might. Dwight D. Eisenhower, one of the great American heroes of the war, was elected as President in 1952 and re-elected in 1956. For many, middle class status was both desirable and attainable.
But there were serious issues under the “Happy Days” exterior of the decade. War-weary citizens paid little attention to the Korean War (1950-1953) and to the war’s veterans, causing it to become known as the “Forgotten War.” Systemic racism was prevalent in many parts of the country; the landmark Supreme Court ruling of Brown vs. the Board of Education was reached in 1954, and gave rise to the modern Civil Rights movement and to voices like those of Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, and Malcolm X. Fear about global atomic annihilation prompted atomic-bomb drills in schools and the building of backyard bomb shelters.
United States postage stamps issued in the 1950’s celebrated historic anniversaries like the Battle of Brooklyn while also honoring new developments such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).