Martin Luther King Memorial

The Martin Luther King Memorial stands proudly to the near southwest of the National Mall in Washington DC. Built to honor an incredible man who helped move equality and social movement forward, the monument covers four acres at the northwest corner of the Tidal Basin near the FDR Memorial and is on a sightline that links to both the Lincoln Memorial and the Jefferson Memorial. The official address for the Martin Luther King Memorial is 1964 Independence Avenue, SW. This address commemorates the year that the Civil Rights Act became law.

The Martin Luther King Memorial, more officially known as the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, opened to the public on August 22, 2011. Its establishment was a culmination of two decades of planning, fund-raising, and construction. Major features of the Martin Luther King Memorial include the Inscription Wall and a 30-foot relief of King himself that is known as the Stone of Hope. The Inscription Wall displays 16 quotes from King’s speeches, sermons, and writings. The Stone of Hope includes two additional inscriptions that are also attributed to Martin Luther King. One of these inscriptions is from his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. It reads, “Out of the Mountain of Despair, a Stone of Hope.”

The Martin Luther King Memorial is open to the public 24 hours a day and is operated by the National Park Service. Park rangers are on duty daily from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. and are available to answer questions. The rangers also provide interpretive programs every hour on the hour from 10 a.m. until 11 p.m. No fees or reservations are required for general visits to the Martin Luther King Memorial. For planned events, a permit may be required. Found near the memorial is a bookstore where visitors can find products to commemorate their visits. The bookstore also has Junior Ranger booklets that offer insight into the National Mall and Memorial Parks.

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