Atlanta post office renamed for late-Rep. John Lewis on what would have been his 84th birthday

ATLANTA — An honor for the late Georgia Rep. John Lewis on what would have been his 84th birthday.

It was two years ago when legislation was passed to rename the main post office in Southwest Atlanta after the civil rights icon.

Family and friends gathered Wednesday as the John R. Lewis post office was dedicated.

Lewis may have been born in Troy, Alabama, 84 years ago, but his legacy to Atlanta and the nation is still being felt today.

“We feel honored. We’ve gotten a chance to do a lot of things that we normally wouldn’t have done because of him, and we really appreciate his efforts,” Lewis’ brother, Henry Lewis, said.

The Lewis family said they were humbled by the post office dedication. His name was memorialized on a plaque, his legacy was cemented for all to see.


“My employees actually suggested this to me because he used to come here and buy his stamps, he did his transactions here, and he spoke with them. He was very personable. He would ask how they were doing for the day. And he always thanked them for their service,” said Falonda Woods, postmaster for Atlanta.

Lewis represented Georgia’s 5th Congressional District from 1987 until his death in 2020.

His legacy remains as co-founder and chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, or SNCC.

He went from being a freedom rider to a powerful young speaker at the historic march on Washington with the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and organizer of what is now known as Bloody Sunday -- the historic march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama.

“Well, it actually made me a better person because he was out there putting his life on the line. And when you see somebody doing it, with no fear, with all of the retaliation that they receive, they didn’t deliver any. They were all about nonviolence. And personally, I think that’s why a lot of their efforts succeeded,” Henry Lewis said.

Rep. Lewis died of pancreatic cancer in 2020.

Rep. Nikema Williams, who took over his seat, introduced the legislation to rename the post office and it was passed by the House and Senate and signed by President Joe Biden into law.


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