ATLANTA - The Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site celebrates the 25th anniversary of the national holiday observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 82nd birthday with a special event titled, “The Relevancy of the King Legacy in the 21st Century: A Conversation with Dr. Clayborne Carson” at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia on Saturday, January 15, 2011 at 1:00pm. This event is part of an ongoing series of programming celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site. “Visitation to the National Historic Site reaches its peak during King Week (January 8-17, 2011) and this year the park has planned a dynamic, powerful, and relevant program for our visitors that embraces Dr. King’s philosophies and the Site’s vision,” stated Judy Forte, Park Superintendent.
The National Park Service has invited one of America’s most recognized and renowned Civil Rights and King scholar, Dr. Clayborne Carson, to engage in a conversation on the topic of the 21st century relevancy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy and the modern Civil Rights Movement with Emmy Award winning News Director and Anchor for DeKalb County Government, DCTV, Ms. Diamond Lewis. Dr. Carson is a Professor of History at Stanford University and the Director of the Martin Luther King, Jr., Research and Education Institute. Dr. Carson has dedicated his professional career to the study of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the modern Civil Rights Movements he inspired. Dr. Carson has directed the Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project which has to date resulted in the publication of six volumes of King’s most important speeches, sermons, correspondence, publications, and other unpublished writings.
Dr. Carson has authored, co-authored, and co-edited several other definitive works based on the King papers, including A Knock at Midnight: Inspiration from the Great Sermons of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. (1998); The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr. (1998); A Call to Conscience: The Landmark Speeches of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (2001); and most recently The Martin Luther King, Jr. Encyclopedia (2008).
The program will also feature presentations from National Park Service officials, local dignitaries, and musical selections by the Georgia State Defense Force Band. Finally, the newly designed park brochure which features a chronology of Dr. King’s life and legacy with an array of timeless keepsake King family photos will be unveiled. Following this special event, Dr. Carson will provide a book signing on all his works relative to Dr. King’s legacy and the modern Civil Rights Movement.
The mission of the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site is to preserve, protect, and interpret the places where Martin Luther King, Jr. was born, where he lived, worked, worshiped, and where he is buried, while ensuring connections are made to the life and legacy of one of the most influential Americans of the 20th century.