Martin Luther King Memorial Dedication Cover with Gandhi, Thoreau and MLK stamps

Hello Gandhi Collectors,

On October 16th Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial was dedicated to nation by President Barack Obama. It was schedule on August 28, 2011 but it was postponed because of hurricane Irene.

I was lucky enough to visit this memorial during my last visit in September. I was amazed by location of this memorial as MLK  is the fourth non-President to be memorialized on the National Mall where all other memorial  are of past presidents Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson, FDR and others.

Covering four acres, the memorial opened to the public on August 22, 2011. A ceremony dedicating the Memorial was scheduled for Sunday, August 28, 2011, the 48th anniversary of the "I Have a Dream" speech that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963 but was postponed until October 16 (the 16th anniversary of the 1995 Million Man March on the National Mall) due to Hurricane Irene.

The centerpiece for the memorial is based on a line from King's "I Have A Dream" speech: "Out of a mountain of despair, a stone of hope. A 30 feet high relief of King named the “Stone of Hope” stands past two other pieces of granite that symbolize the "mountain of despair. (Read more about Memorial)

As all of you know that MLK used Mahatma Gandhi's Principle of Non-Violence to fight for Africian American Civil Rights Movement. Following article  from Wikipedia will explain you about Mahatma Gandhi's deeply influence on MLK.(Source Wikipedia)

With assistance from the Quaker group the American Friends Service Committee, and inspired by Gandhi's success with non-violent activism, King visited Gandhi's birthplace in India in 1959. The trip to India affected King in a profound way, deepening his understanding of non-violent resistance and his commitment to America's struggle for civil rights. In a radio address made during his final evening in India, King reflected, "Since being in India, I am more convinced than ever before that the method of nonviolent resistance is the most potent weapon available to oppressed people in their struggle for justice and human dignity. In a real sense, Mahatma Gandhi embodied in his life certain universal principles that are inherent in the moral structure of the universe, and these principles are as inescapable as the law of gravitation." African American civil rights activist Bayard Rustin had studied Gandhi's teachings. Rustin counseled King to dedicate himself to the principles of non-violence, served as King's main advisor and mentor throughout his early activism, and was the main organizer of the 1963 March on Washington. 

Mahatma Gandhi picture was always hanging in his office, which indicates how deeply Gandhi had influenced him. 
Photo uploaded from unknown
source from Internet.!!

You can see MLK interview in which he talks about influence of Mahatma Gandhi and Non-Violence.

Also MLK was influenced by David Henry Thoreau. (Source Wikipedia)

Martin Luther King, Jr. noted in his autobiography that his first encounter with the idea of non-violent resistance was reading "On Civil Disobedience" in 1944 while attending Morehouse College. He wrote in his autobiography that it was

Here, in this courageous New Englander's refusal to pay his taxes and his choice of jail rather than support a war that would spread slavery's territory into Mexico, I made my first contact with the theory of nonviolent resistance. Fascinated by the idea of refusing to cooperate with an evil system, I was so deeply moved that I reread the work several times.

I became convinced that noncooperation with evil is as much a moral obligation as is cooperation with good. No other person has been more eloquent and passionate in getting this idea across than Henry David Thoreau. As a result of his writings and personal witness, we are the heirs of a legacy of creative protest. The teachings of Thoreau came alive in our civil rights movement; indeed, they are more alive than ever before. Whether expressed in a sit-in at lunch counters, a freedom ride into Mississippi, a peaceful protest in Albany, Georgia, a bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama, these are outgrowths of Thoreau's insistence that evil must be resisted and that no moral man can patiently adjust to injustice.

Mahatma Gandhi was also deeply influenced by David Henry Thoreau and used some of his principles in South Africa as well as in India.

I take full responsibility of above cover made by me. Total 10 covers were made by with different cachet, stamps combination. Above cover is one of them and has
1) Photograph of MLK Memorial.(Taken by me).
2) 47 cents USA stamps of MLK, Gandhi and Thoreau.
3) Hand cancel on October 16th from Washington, DC post office.(It's  open on Sunday.!)
4) Also following note is printed on the cover.

And that's the reason I used stamps of all 3 person on this cover to make aware of all  3's  contribution in Non-Violence and Civil Disobedience.

This is my private collectible item.If you want to see USPS cover from USPS than see following screen shot and link. ( You can see now difference between Official and private FDC.!!)


By working on this kind of dedication, unveiling, anniversary, special cancellation I am trying to take Gandhi Philately to different level. Not sure what is importance in philatelic value in exhibitions, but my goal is to document what ever I can. I hope you all will get some idea from this and start working on similar things in your area. I know it's take lot of time and effort, but it's fun.

Again thanks for reading and  Please share your thoughts in the comments section. (Also I think today this blog will cross 25000 page view !! Thank You to all page viewers.).

Ketankumar Patel.

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