Chamblee54

I Have A Dream

Posted in Georgia History, GSU photo archive, History, Race by chamblee54 on September 3, 2014

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PG stumbled onto a blog post about a speech. It was delivered August 28, 1963, by Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. You have probably heard the money quote many times, but how many have heard the entire 881 words. PG had not, and decided to take a look.

The speech is really a sermon. It is delivered with the cadence, and rhetorical flourishes, of the church. Dr. King was a minister. The Jesus worship church is a huge player in African America. The fact that slaves were introduced to this religion by their owners seems to be forgotten.

The term used is Negro. This was the polite word in 1963. The custom of saying Black started in the late sixties, at least partially inspired by James Brown. Negro began to be seen as an insult, along with the infamous N-word … which is really just a lazy way of saying Negro.

As the speech is working up to the climax, there is a line “But not only there; let freedom ring from the Stone Mountain of Georgia!” Today, Stone Mountain is a middle class black community. DeKalb County is mostly black, and the political leadership is African American. This was a long way from happening in 1963.

Twelve weeks after Dr. King gave his speech, President John Kennedy was killed. Part of the reaction to this tragedy was the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The next year saw the Voting Rights Act, and escalation of the war in Vietnam. It seemed that for every step forward, there was a half step back. People lost patience with non violence. America did not implode, but somehow survived. It is now fifty one years later. Pictures today are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.

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3 Responses

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  1. Dr. King And Mr. King | Chamblee54 said, on September 5, 2014 at 11:54 am

    […] other day PG stumbled onto a blog post, about a speech given by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. This address was deemed “the singularly most-important speech on race in the history of this […]

  2. Dr. King And Mr. King | Chamblee54 said, on April 28, 2017 at 9:50 am

    […] to reporters without benefit of a speech writer. What he said might be more important. This double repost has pictures from The Library of […]

  3. Dr. King And Mr. King | Chamblee54 said, on April 7, 2019 at 8:15 am

    […] to reporters, without benefit of a speech writer. What he said might be more important. This double repost has pictures from The Library of […]


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