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Legendary Chicago Publisher To Be Honored With Stamp

The U.S. Postal Service will issue a stamp honoring legendary Chicago publisher John H. Johnson. (U.S. Postal Service)

The U.S. Postal Service will issue a stamp honoring legendary Chicago publisher John H. Johnson. (U.S. Postal Service)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — The trail-blazing, Chicago-based publisher of Ebony and Jet magazines will be honored with a U.S. postal stamp.

John H. Jonson (1918-2005) will be the subject of a Black Heritage stamp to be issued this month. The occasion will be marked with a Jan. 31 ceremony at Johnson Publishing Co. at 820 S. Michigan Ave.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Lisa Fielding reports

Johnson published magazines for an African-American audience at a time when mainstream companies ignored black readers. He overcame poverty and racism to build a business empire that also included radio stations and cosmetics.

“I am immensely proud that my father and his life’s passion are being recognized in such high an honor as the Black Heritage Stamp,” Linda Johnson Rice, chairwoman of Johnson Publishing Company, said in a written statement. “His legacy lives on in all whom he touched and in the work we continue to do daily.”

The U.S. Postal Service has recognized the achievements of prominent African Americans through the Black Heritage series since 1978. This stamp honoring Johnson is the 35th stamp in that series, which highlights outstanding individuals who helped shape American culture.

It is being issued as a “Forever” stamp, which are always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce rate.