WNYT.com

NYS Museum re-discovers rare treasure

Posted at: 01/20/2014 11:39 AM
Updated at: 01/20/2014 11:27 PM
By: AP





 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. speaks to the New York State Civil War Centennial Commission on Sept. 12, 1962.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. speaks to the New York State Civil War Centennial Commission on Sept. 12, 1962.
Photo: New York State Archives

ALBANY - In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the NYS Museum has unveiled a most special exhibit. It was just re-discovered after being tucked way for about 35 years. And part of the beauty of this exhibit is that you don't have to leave your computer to experience it.

It's an online recording of a speech the civil rights leader made at the Emancipation Dinner in New York City in September 1962. 

This is the only known recording of that speech, which was seen as a prelude to the famous "I Have A Dream" speech.

The audio recording of the 1962 speech became part of the local museum's collection in 1979. Then just recently, a very lucky intern found it tucked away in the museum's archives.

The museum's senior historian says there are a lot of parallels between this speech and the very famous speech Dr. King would make about a year later: making mention of our nation's founding documents, elaborating on the inequalities African Americans faced at that time and the need to strive for equality for all races.

Here's the speech in its entirety, about 26 minutes long:

Online: www.nysm.nysed.gov/mlk