Martin Luther King was a prominent American activist and a forefront leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement. King played a noteworthy part in the Civil Rights movement in the US and around the globe through nonviolent methods that based on Mahatma Gandhi’s teachings (Tavernise n.pag.). As a result, Martin Luther is an iconic figure in the history of modern American liberalism. The new monument of Martin Luther King stands at West Potomac Park, Washington, D.C. The Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial is America’s 395th national park and honors the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Tavernise n.pag.). Even though the monument is not the first tribute to an African-American in Washington, Martin Luther is the first African-American respected with a monument placed on the National Mall. In addition, the King is the fourth non-president to receive tribute in such a way.
The address for the monument is 1964 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC, with 1964 selected to refer to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was a notable landmark in the Civil Rights movement in which Luther King played a significant role (Tavernise n.pag.). The centerpiece of the monument shows a line from “I Have a Dream” speech: “Out of a mountain of despair, a stone of hope”. There is a 30 feet-high sculptural relief of Martin Luther referred to as the “Stone of Hope” that stands beyond other two granite pieces to represent the “mountain of despair”. The structure of the monument, which includes a passage from the mountain of despair towards the stone of hope, symbolizes the struggles of Martin Luther during his life (Tavernise n.pag.). The monument is also comprised of an inscription wall that has excerpts from Martin Luther’s speeches and sermons. The relief sculpture of King gives the feeling that he is looking over the Tidal Basin towards the horizon, and the cherry trees surrounding the memorial will continue to bloom every year at the anniversary of his death.