Bicentennial events kick-off with unveiling of Lincoln stamp

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It's a big week for the city of Springfield as visitors from across the country flock to Illinois to celebrate the 200th birthday of Abraham Lincoln.

Day one of bicentennial week began with a ceremony at the Old State Capitol building Monday morning and to commemorate the first-day-of-issue of a special new set of postage stamps.

Hundreds of people gathered in the Representatives hall of the Old State Capitol to witness a ceremony which Lincoln admirers and historians call a "once in a lifetime opportunity."

United States Postmaster General John Potter and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin joined together to dedicate four new bicentennial stamps. Springfield Mayor Tim Davlin also spoke to the crowd calling it the beginning of a "great week" in the state capitol.

The newly issued stamps show Lincoln splitting logs, as a young lawyer, a politician and finally President, an attempt by stamp designers to portray Lincoln as a common man.

"It was very difficult to try to figure out how to adequately honor this great man, but I think the honor to Lincoln occurred on November 4th last year when the American people set race aside and elected the first African-American President," said Senator Dick Durbin, D-Illinois.

The new stamps honoring Lincoln are now available for sale for 42 cents across the country. The post office will have a special hand-stamped cancellation service on Lincoln's birthday at the Old State Capitol for serious stamp collectors out there...

To find a list of all the Lincoln bicentennial events, click on Lincoln February events.

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