Prince Hall Masonic Lodge:
The Prince Hall Masonic Building located at 330 Auburn Avenue represents the most recent expansion to the park’s boundaries. The multistory complex was designed in 1937 and completed in 1940 with money raised by civic leader and Grand Master John Wesley Dobbs. In 1955 the building underwent a renovation and addition designed by noted black architect Edward C. Miller. The structure has housed and provided meeting location for many important African American organizations throughout its history. The Atlanta Civic-Political League, Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, Madame C.J. Walker Beauty School, and the first radio station owned and programmed by African Americans, WERD were all housed within the structure.The Masonic Building also housed the headquarters for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s office, the SCLC printing operation, and other staff offices were located on the structure’s first floor and basement. King’s speeches were routinely broadcast from WERD radio station.The Prince Hall Masonic Lodge of Georgia continues to own and maintain the building. The Lodge still holds regular meetings in the masonic hall areas. In 2018 the Masonic Building became a contributing resource within the park boundaries. In 2019 the Prince Hall Masonic Lodge of Georgia and Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park began partnering to tell the story of King’s activities with the SCLC and the history of the organizations that occupied the Masonic Building.
The park visitor center was opened in 1996, in time for the Summer Olympic Games held in Atlanta, Ga. The Visitor Center serves as the park’s welcome center, containing visitor information, park tour services, relevant exhibits, a 125-seat movie theater, and the park’s archives.
Historic Fire Station No. 6:
Historic Fire Station No. 6 was built in 1894 and operated within the Sweet Auburn community for nearly 100 years. During Dr. King’s childhood, this fire station was segregated, with white fireman serving a predominantly African American community. This was one of Atlanta’s first fire stations to racially integrate its staff in the 1960s. From 1994-1996 the fire station was rehabilitated from a working fire station to a museum space.
Last updated: October 8, 2020