When Martin Luther King Jr. stood on the steps here in 1963 and said, "I have a dream," he spoke with Lincoln's antislavery legacy quite literally behind him. This memorial, an immense Doric temple housing a massive statue of a somber, seated Lincoln, commemorates the president's abolitionist leadership during the Civil War with an inscription of his Gettysburg Address covering one giant wall, and his second inaugural address, in which he denounced slavery, engraved on another. Murals, including images of an angel freeing a slave, drive the point home. A modest inscription on the steps marks the spot where King spoke.
Tip: The floodlit memorial is particularly dramatic after dark; park service staff stay until midnight.