WASHINGTON — Will Shafroth, president of the National Park Foundation (NPF) issued the following statement regarding the recent transfer of the Martin Luther King Jr. Birth Home to the National Park Service:
As the official philanthropic partner of the National Park Service, the National Park Foundation works with individuals, non-profit partners and companies to benefit our nation’s national parks.
Thanks to private philanthropy, the National Park Foundation facilitated the purchase of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birth home from the King Center, the owner of the home since 1973, and its immediate transfer to the National Park Service. The transaction closed on November 27, 2018. As part of Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park, the home has been and will continue to be open to the public.
The National Park Foundation is honored to partner with the King Center and the National Park Service to help protect the home in which Dr. King was born and grew up. As a part of the National Park System, this national treasure of such historic significance and meaning will have the ongoing support needed to preserve it for future generations and to ensure that all people are able to access and share the stories and lessons it holds.
The National Park Foundation plays a critical role in helping the National Park Service expand people’s understanding of and direct access to American history. As a part of this tradition, the National Park Foundation is committed to increasing public understanding of and access to African American history and the legacy of the civil rights movement through national parks. As such, the National Park Foundation has helped preserve places like Camp Nelson National Monument, Freedom Riders National Monument, Pullman National Monument, and Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument. We are delighted to be able to add Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birth home to this legacy.
Further details will be shared at a press event to take place after the King holiday.