Birth Home Temporary Closure

Birth Home of Martin Luther King, Jr
Birth Home of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Gary Tarleton, NPS

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News Release Date: March 7, 2017

Contact: Judy Forte, 404-909-2911

ATLANTA — Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site will temporarily close the childhood home of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. beginning March 8, 2017. The home is expected to reopen March 27, 2017, pending the outcome of a comprehensive condition assessment of the site’s structure, envelope and building systems. Tours of the Birth Home will be suspended during this time.

“Public safety and resource protection are our top priorities,” said Judy Forte, superintendent, Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site.  “We’re working to ensure that Dr. King’s birth home is structurally sound, adequately preserved and available to visitors for generations to come.”

The condition assessment is important to the ongoing preservation of the Birth Home and will assist the park in determining whether the structure’s second floor — closed since August 2016 for safety concerns — can be reopened to the public. Park officials will use findings from the condition assessment to determine future preservation needs and plans.

In lieu of Birth Home tours during the temporary closure, visitors can access information about Dr. King’s Birth Home through a series of opportunities, including:

  • "The Birth Home Story" Virtual Tour at Fire Station No. 6 (97 Boulevard, Atlanta): Attend presentations by park rangers who will guide visitors back to the time of Dr. King's childhood to interpret the Sweet Auburn community he grew up in and the home where he was born and raised for the first 12 years of his life;   

  • Photo Gallery and Wayside Exhibits in the Birth Home block:  View large photographs of the Birth Home’s interior at Eastern National Museum Store (497 Auburn Avenue, Atlanta) next door to Dr. King’s Birth Home and view the wayside exhibits along the Birth Home block to learn more about the neighborhood Dr. King grew up in;

  • “The Birth Home Story” film at the park’s visitor center (450 Auburn Avenue, Atlanta): View the twenty-minute film at the visitor center and explore historical and interactive exhibits about Dr. King and the Civil Rights Movement; and

  • Roving Ranger Talks:  Interact with park rangers who will rove the area around the Birth Home and offer interpretive talks and information to visitors.  

Other significant resources for visitors at the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site include:  the Historic Fire Station No. 6, The King Center (including Freedom Hall and the gravesites of Dr. and Mrs. King), and Dr. King’s spiritual home, historic Ebenezer Baptist Church. Visitors are encouraged to begin their visits at the park’s visitor center located at 450 Auburn Ave, NE, Atlanta, GA 30312, where visitors can find a listing of daily interpretive activities.

For more information, visit and stay connected on Twitter @MLKJrNHSNPS, Facebook MartinLutherKingJrNPS, Instagram @martinlutherkingjrnps and YouTube @mlkjrnhsnps.

Last updated: March 7, 2017

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450 Auburn Avenue, NE
Atlanta, GA 30312


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