Sermons & Speeches
I Have a Dream, 1963—The most widely-known of Dr. King’s words, the “I Have a Dream” speech was delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963 at the March for Jobs & Freedom, generally referred to as the March on Washington. In addition to focusing the nation’s conscience on the continuing plague of racial and social injustice, the speech has gone on to become one of mankind’s most oft-repeated clarion calls for freedom and equality.
Give Us the Ballot, 1957—One of King’s first speeches to reach a wide audience, these words were delivered at the “Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom” in Washington in 1957, a large rally aimed at pressuring Congress to follow through with the desegregation promised by Brown vs. Board of Education.
Letter from a Birmingham Jail, 1963—At the height of the civil rights movement in the Deep South, Dr. King was repeatedly jailed for what the segregationist authorities deemed to be “disturbing the peace.” During one such jail sentence, Dr. King penned this famous letter, giving an impassioned defense of the need for immediate change and justice, rather than continued delay.
Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech, 1964—Dr. King was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize at the height of the American civil rights movement, a time when both Congress and the Supreme Court were acting to sweep away institutionalized segregation. In a timeless call for the need of grassroots activism, Dr. King devoted his speech not to the country’s leaders or top voices, but to the average men and women fighting for change every day in their communities.