1994 29¢ George Meany
Issue Date: August 16, 1994
City: Washington, DC
Printed By: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Engraved
Perforations: 11.1 x 11
George Meany (1894-1980)
The stubbornness that became George Meany’s trademark showed itself at an early age when, against his father’s wishes, he dropped out of school and following in his father’s footsteps, took a job as a plumber. Through leadership roles in his local union, which he joined in 1917, he rose to become one of the most influential labor leaders in American history. But even after he had become president of the nation’s largest labor organization, Meany still considered himself a plumber.
Elected president of the New York State Federation of Labor in 1934, he went on in 1939 to serve as the secretary-treasurer of the American Federation of Labor (AFL). In 1952 he was unanimously elected president of the AFL, a position he held until his retirement in 1979.
Spanning eight presidents, Meany’s career remains unparalleled in American labor history. His greatest achievement was the merger of the AFL with the Congress of Industrial Labor (CIO) in 1955. As the leading spokesman for U.S. labor, he successfully lobbied against discrimination, instituted training programs, and established an apprentice recruitment program. In 1963, Meany received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Honoring this remarkable man, this stamp was issued on the 100th anniversary of his birth.