These years witnessed many groundbreaking events, including several related to space exploration. For instance, the first woman astronaut Sally Ride and the first African American astronaut Guion Bluford participated in space missions. In other topical genres, Justice Sandra Day O'Conner, the first woman to sit on the US Supreme Court, completed her first full term during this period, and the world of technology saw Sony release its first compact disc player. Time magazine selected The Computer as its "Man of the Year" (changed in 1999 to Person of the Year).
During this period, postage stamps commemorating the 250th birthday of America's first president, George Washington, and the 100th birthday of President Franklin Roosevelt appeared. The state birds and flowers of all fifty states were issued in a single pane of fifty stamps in the spring of 1982. The 1982 Black Heritage Series issue featured an image of Jackie Robinson, and George Herman "Babe" Ruth was also honored. The stamp featured an image of "Babe" in his classic pose, looking out after hitting a ball into the stands.