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NPS-Martin Luther King Jr. NHS: Remembrance Wreath Laying Ceremony Held


Bureau: National Park Service


NPS photo of commemorative wreath at the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church
This photo shows the replica of the 1968 wreath that the National Park Service placed on the side of the Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church. Photo by Linda Byers, NPS. 

On Friday, April 4, the National Park Service joined the Martin Luther King, Jr., Center for Non-Violent Social Change, Ebenezer Baptist Church, Southern Christian Leadership Conference and the ciity of Atlanta in hosting a wreath-laying ceremony for the general public in the park.

The wreath-laying and candlelight vigil event commemorated the life, teachings, philosophy and work of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. This year marks the 46th anniversary of King’s death. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968, at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tenn., and was bought home and buried in the Sweet Auburn community. On April 9, 1968, King’s funeral took place at Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church and Morehouse College.

In remembrance of this solemn moment in history, the National Park Service placed a replica of the 1968 wreath on the historic location of Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church as it appeared on April 9, 1968.

The major highlight of the wreath-laying ceremony was hearing King’s daughter, Bernice King, recite excerpts of her father’s famous last sermon, “Drum Major Instinct,” which her father delivered in Heritage Sanctuary of Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church on Feb. 4, 1968, two months prior to his death.

By: Marty Smith, acting chief of Interpretation, Education and Cultural Resource Management, Martin Luther King Jr. NHS, NPS
April 11, 2014

This story appears in the April 11, 2014, edition of InsideNPS.

Related Link:

NPS-Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site