Maya Angelou

This Maya Angelou Stamp Got It All Wrong

It’s a frustrating thing when someone insists you said something that you damn well know you didn’t… Or did you? Well, I’m sure many authors and movie stars would feel the same way considering how often they are misquoted.


In this case, we have the late and great Maya Angelou literally stamped with something she didn’t say. A year after she passed, the US postal service decided to honor the legendary writer and activist with an honorary postage stamp. It was adorned with her picture and a lovely quote:


Maya Angelou

Image Via Linn’s Stamp News


It’s nice, right? It’s just that it’s not Angelou’s words. According to a recent BBC News article, it’s from Joan Walsh Anglund’s 1967 book A Cup of Sun. The US postal service took a lot of heat for a quote they said was only to be “associated” with Angelou, not her exact words.


However, Maya Angelou is not the only public figure that this has happened to! BBC discusses Quote Investigators data when searching someone like Angelou. Millions of pages come up and due to Google’s loopy algorithm, the pages believed to be most “official” are listed first. Here’s the deal: They aren’t always official! People like Marilyn Monroe, Mark Twain, or Gandhi are often victims to misattribution because of their fame and popularity.


Let this past mishap be a lesson to all: Do your homework before you settle on who said it. Let the legends speak for themselves.


Feature Image Via Los Angeles Times