Martin Luther King Jr. was an American clergyman (leader of a Christian congregation) who went on to became one of the most important figures in the American civil rights movement. An African-American, King was born on 15 January 1929. He used the nonviolence principles of Mahatma Gandhi to promote the civil rights movement in America.
Like the Mahatma Gandhi opted for the Dandi March to break the Salt Law, in 1963 King led the March on Washington. During this march, on August 28, 1963, he delivered his famous speech “I have a dream” from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. In the speech King called for eliminating racism from the American society. King delivered the speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. Over 250,000 people were present in front of Dr. King. It is said that King was up until 4 a.m. the night before working on the speech. The speech lasted 17 minutes. Time magazine named King as the Man of the Year in 1963.
Today’s iconic photograph was taken when King was delivering his speech. The photographer’s name is not known. This speech is considered one of the best speeches ever made. The video of this speech is available below.
Did you know:
- At the age of 35, in 1964, King became the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
- He is admired as one of the best orators in American history.
- “I have a dream” speech is going to be copyrighted until 2038. Copyright lies with the Estate of Martin Luther King, Jr., Inc.
- King was awarded more than 50 honorary degrees from universities all around the world.
- He was assassinated at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968, at the age of 39.
Here is the video of the I have a Dream speech made on 28 August 1963.
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