“I’ve Been to the Mountaintop,” the last speech given by Martin Luther King, was shared in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 3, 1968. The next day King was assassinated. Here’s an excerpt:
Something is happening in Memphis; something is happening in our world. And you know, if I were standing at the beginning of time, with the possibility of taking a kind of general and panoramic view of the whole of human history up to now, and the Almighty said to me, “Martin Luther King, which age would you like to live in?” I would take my mental flight by Egypt…Greece…Roman Empire…the Renaissance…I would come on up even to 1863, and watch a vacillating President by the name of Abraham Lincoln finally come to the conclusion that he had to sign the Emancipation Proclamation. But I wouldn’t stop there…Strangely enough, I would turn to the Almighty, and say, “If you allow me to live just a few years in the second half of the 20th century, I will be happy.” from “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” by Martin Luther King, Jr.
“I Have a Dream”, perhaps King’s most well known speech, was delivered in Washington, DC, August 28, 1963 on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. King was there participating in the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The March and “I Have a Dream” were instrumental in the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Here’s a portion of his inspirational words:
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today! from “I Have a Dream” by Martin Luther King, Jr. [Audio and Full Text of “I Have a Dream”]
In observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, our office will be closed on Monday, January 16.