Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day in NYC on January 17, 2022




Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial in West Potomac Park, Washington, D.C.

Monday, January 17, 2022 we will observe the national holiday, Martin Luther King Jr, Day. How will you reflect on the meaning of that day? Here are a few suggestions.

History Alive! Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: The Last Five Years

Honor the legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with living history interpreter John W. McCaskill as he chronicles the last five years of King’s life and shares other stories of the individuals who fought to end racial segregation and discrimination in the United States. Monday, January 17th from 1-2pm, Webcasts and Online. This is a free event through the National Museum of African American History & Culture.


The Apollo Theater Presents Uptown Hall: MLK, Activism, and the Arts Broadcast

Image courtesy of The Apollo Theater

This commemorative and uplifting event brings together scholars, cultural and community leaders, and activists to engage in conversation and performance exploring Dr. King’s legacy and how his work is continued today.


The 36th Annual Brooklyn Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at BAM

[Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., half-length portrait, facing front]. Dick DeMarsico, photographer, 1964. New York World-Telegram and the Sun Newspaper Photograph Collection. Prints & Photographs Division
Join BAM in-person or livestream on January 17th at 10:30am. This year, BAM has expanded its tribute to include a variety of free performances and events throughout the day.


The 54th Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Worship Service & Celebration at Mount Olivet Baptist Church in Harlem ~ January 17

A Jazzmobile invitation to join the Baptist Ministers’ Conference of Greater New York and Vicinity for a tribute to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, January 17th at 10am.


Harlem Gospel Choir  at Sony Hall ~ January 17

via Harlem Gospel Choir

The World Famous Harlem Gospel Choir will perform in a Matinee on Martin Luther King Jr. Day at Sony Hall, 235 West 46th Street, NYC.


Activist New York at Museum of the City of New York

The Museum of the City of New York honors Martin Luther King Jr. Day with its exhibition Activist New York. Walk through a timeline of New Yorkers banding together on a wide range of issues from civil rights and wages to sexual orientation and religious freedom.


NYC Landmarks Preservation Launches ‘Seneca Village Unearthed’ Online

1855 Viele Topographic Survey with the added outline of Seneca Village, courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives.

The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC)  launched the site, Seneca Village Unearthed, an online exhibit and collection of artifacts from what was once New York City’s largest community of free African-American landowners. Seneca Village was located in what is now Central Park, a scenic landmark. Through this online exhibit and collection, the general public will for the first time have access to nearly 300 artifacts and get a glimpse of what life was like for Seneca villagers in the mid-19th century


Central Park Conservancy Honors History by Adding Seneca Village Signage

Photo credits: The Central Park Conservancy developed this program of interpretative signage based on research conducted by the Institute for the Exploration of Seneca Village History (IESVH), with additional research and content development by the Conservancy and Hunter Research, Inc. Project management by Hunter Research, Inc. and graphic design by Douglas Scott. Sign fabrication by Pannier Graphics. The IESVH includes Cynthia Copeland, Paul Johnson, Celedonia Jones, Meredith Linn, Nan Rothschild, Herbert Seignoret, Diana diZerega Wall, and Sharon Wilkins.

The Central Park Conservancy launched its first major interpretive signage initiative in Central Park to commemorate Seneca Village, a predominantly African American community that existed before the City of New York created Central Park. The interpretive signs build on decades of research, including the work of the Institute for the Exploration of Seneca Village History (IESVH) — a group of scholars and archeologists who have been studying Seneca Village — as well as the Conservancy’s deep knowledge of the history of Central Park and long involvement in the study of Seneca Village.


Join NYC Parks Department in a Day of Service

Wave Hill.

Join NYC Parks Department in honoring Martin Luther King Jr from January 14 through January 17th with events that include not only a day of service, but also “Family Art Project: Freedom Quilters of Gee’s Bend” at Wave Hill.


Visit the Oldest African-American Musical Organization in the Country ~ NAMA

Founded in 1904, the New Amsterdam Musical Association (NAMA) is the oldest African-American musical organization in the country. It was founded at a time when the musicians union didn’t admit minority musicians, and the law stated that one had to be in the union in order to perform in New York City!


Take a Historic Harlem Walking Tour

Mural ‘Spirit of Harlem’ by artist Louis Del Sarte, Commissioned for the people of Harlem by North Fork Bank, 2005 and restored and dedicated to the Harlem community in 2018. Located on the corner of 125th Street and Frederick Douglass Blvd. in Harlem. Photo credit: AFineLyne

Harlem-based tour company Welcome To Harlem originated in 2004 with tour guides who are born and raised in the neighborhood. Tours range from walking tours through historic neighborhoods to jamming jazz and gospel brunch.


MTA Arts & Design Celebrates Black History + Culture with its treasure trove of artwork within the MTA System

Artist, Beatrice Lebreton ‘Wisdom Along the Way’, 2017 at Rockaway Avenue

MTA Arts & Design honors Black history throughout all five boroughs. Read about the artists who created the work, where the artwork is located and the meaning behind each piece.


African American Landmarks & Historic Districts in New York City by NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission

nyc Landmarks Preservation Commission Site ~ Cover Image: This bird’s eye view of New York City, including Brooklyn, was created by John Backman in 1859. Source: Bird’s eye view of the city of New York. Brooklyn. Williamsburg. The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library Digital Collections

The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) created an interactive story map to celebrate New York City’s African American history through its designated places. Entitled Preserving Significant Places of Black History, it celebrates New York City’s African American history through designated landmarks and historic districts. For five decades LPC has been recognizing, supporting, and celebrating places of African American cultural and historic significance through designation. This story map highlights landmarks and historic districts that illustrate the experiences and achievements of African Americans through interactive maps, narrative text, images, and multimedia content.


Visit The Historic African Burial Ground

The Maerschalck map of the City of New York is a historic map made in 1754 that clearly shows the African Burial Ground and its surrounding neighborhood. Library of Congress

African Burial Ground (managed by the National Park Service) is the oldest and largest known excavated burial ground in North America for both free and enslaved Africans. It protects the historic role slavery played in building New York. The Visitors Center is located at 290 Broadway; The outside memorial is located at the intersection of African Burial Ground Way (formerly Elk Street) and Duane Street.


Explore the History of Victor Hugo Green and The Green Books Online Through The Schomburg Center

Covers of The Negro Motorist Green Book published by Victor H. Green: 1940, 1956, and 1962. Public access via the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Jean Blackwell Hutson Research and Reference Division, New York Public Library

The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture houses the full digital collection of Green Books and other similar guides.