Lincoln Memorial - I Have a Dream

The Lincoln Memorial has been the site of civil rights demonstrations and public gatherings for nearly six decades. One of the most important historical events that took place at the Lincoln Memorial was when Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech on August 28, 1963 during the "March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom."

The following is the exact text of the spoken speech, transcribed from recordings.

...In spite of the difficulties of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

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 one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four 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.

I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama...will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls...I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight...

...From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

When we let freedom ring,...we will be able to speed up that day when all God's children...will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we're free at last!"

To mark the anniversary of the March on Washington that culminated in the speech, the "Martin Luther King, Jr. Inscription Dedication" was unveiled on August 22, 2003. The inscription, over 2 feet wide, marks the location where Dr. King spoke to the crowd. The inscription reads:

I have a dream
Martin Luther King Jr.
The March on Washington
For jobs and freedom
August 28, 1963.

Lincoln Memorial - Martin Luther King, Jr.

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