Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I Have a Dream Monument
Atlanta, Georgia, 1929 - Memphis, Tennessee, 1968
American clergyman, activist, and prominent leader in the African American civil rights movement
8½-meter tall Sierra White granite and bronze memorial. The core element, constructed out of Sierra White granite, is a pedestal for an almost 3 meter tall statue of King, symbolically standing on the shoulders of influential leaders and historic figures in the Civil Rights Movement:
On the pedestal are two bronze reliefs that highlight the history of African Americans – from slavery to the marches of the 1960s:
- Rosa Parks - Rosa Louise McCauley Parks (Tuskegee, Alabama, 1913 - Detroit, Michigan, 2005), African American civil rights activist, acclaimed as the Mother of the modern civil rights movement. She was arrested in 1955 for refusing to give her seat to a white man on a public bus in segregated Montgomery, Alabama. This courageous act lead to a boycott lasting 381 days of the Montgomery public transportation system and the beginning of the modern peaceful protest movement (Wikipedia).
- Sojourner Truth, born Isabella Baumfree (Swartekill, New York c. 1797 - Battle Creek, Michigan, 1883), A former slave, this black woman crusaded for the abolition of slavery and women's rights. After the Civil War she continued lobbying, speaking for the equality of women, minorities and also for the delivery of promised property to Black soldiers of the war
- Frederick Douglass, born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey (Talbot County, Maryland, 1817 or 1818 - Washington, D.C., 1895) - A former slave, Frederick Douglas became one of the greatest figures in the 19th Century. Douglass sought to change the course of American social development to embrace the solid principle that all American people ought to be free and equal. An abolitionist, journalist, distinguished orator, and diplomat in the mid to late 1800's, his writings inspired Dr. King
- Mohandas K. 'Mahatma' Gandhi (1869-1948) - As the leader of India's struggle to free itself from British colonialism, Mahatma Gandhi demonstrated to the world how people could embrace non-violence as an effective tool for positive change. His speeches and nonviolent actions over a twenty-year period lead to India's independence in 1946. Dr. King applied Gandhi's principles to the civil rights struggle in the United States to advance the non-violent resistance movement.
- Right Face:
- Charleston, South Carolina, Slave Auction;
- Crispus Attucks, African American sailor slain in the Boston Massacre, 1770;
- Town crier reading out the Declaration of Independence;
- Slaves escaping the South via the Underground Railroad;
- Union Army's all-Black First South Carolina Regiment entering Charleston
- Left Face:
- African American legislators working on civil right laws;
- White reaction leading to the origin of the Ku Klux Klan;
- Great Migration of the Blacks to northern cities (early 20th century);
- 1957 integration of Little Rock High School in Arkansas;
- Burnings by White mons of integrated interstate buses;
- Brutalization of civil rights demonstrators in Birmingham, Alabama, 1963;
- Civil right marchers
Further more, on the front of the pedestal there are reliefs of the Nobel Peace Prize (with portrait of Alfred Nobel and text "Nobel Peace Prize / 1964") and gospel choristers.
Surrounding the central statue are standing tablets upon which are engraved timelines in civil rights history in America and quotes from King's speeches. Each tablet creates a small alcove for smaller statues representing phases in American black history.
(The texts we have not copied here, but photos are available).
- Slavery - Three slaves. Text: timeline in civil rights history in America, 1500-1865, and short quotes from King's speeches.
- Struggle - A couple. Text: timeline 1868-1957, and short quotes from King's speeches.
- Justice - The figure of Justice. Text: timeline 1960-1968, and short quotes from King's speeches.
- Living the Dream - The shield of Peace. Text: short quotes from King's speeches.
Benches are placed in front of the tablets. In the stone walkways, on the north is a bronze Liberty Bell; on the south is a bronze outline of a slave ship containing figures showing how the slaves where placed below deck.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Monument
January 15, 1929 - April 4, 1968
"I Have A Dream"
"I Have A Dream"
The People of the City & County of Denver
Wellington E. Webb
Wilma J. Webb
First Lady of Denver
whose vision and leadership brought us the Colorado Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday
Denver City Council
Joyce Foster, President
Elbra Wedgeworth, President Pro-Tem
T.J. "Ted" Hackworth
Allegra "Happy" Haynes
Deborah "Debbie" Ortega
Edward P. "Ed" Thomas
Don Mares, Auditor
The Mayor's Commission on Art, Culture & Film
The Mayor's Office of Art, Culture & Film
The Denver Art, Culture & Film Foundation
Denver Park & Recreation
Ed Dwight, Sculptor
Dedicated June 9, 2002
Dedicated to Every Person
Past, Present, and Future
Who Has Committed His or Her Life
To the Struggle for
Freedom, Justice, and Peace
June 9, 2002
Dedicated June 2, 2002.
- Ed Dwight,
sculptor from Denver, Colorado
Sources & Information
Location (N 39°44'45" - W 104°57'16")
Item Code: usco30; Photograph: 17 October 2010
Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
If you want to use photos, please contact us via the contact form (in Dutch, English or German).
© Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt