8. Carnegie Hall (1968)

Carnegie Hall exterior

How do you get to Carnegie Hall? For Dr. King, it was the 100th birthday of W.E.B. DuBois, a sociologist and journalist in the African American community. The event, held on February 23, 1968, was King’s last address in New York and one of his final public speeches. Befitting the occasion, the speech was largely a glowing tribute to DuBois, and King credited the ease with which he moved through both the highest levels of academic achievement and gritty, on the ground organizing.

At this radical, lonely twilight of his career, King’s comments about communism may well have led this speech to the archive burial grounds. Some writers wonder whether corporate sponsors are responsible for the absence of audio or visual recordings of the speech; apparently, even tracking down the text was difficult.