Behind the Speech: MLK's Lawyer Reveals Secrets of Crafting 'I Have a Dream'

Draft speechwriter Clarence Jones describes night before March on Washington.
4:18 | 08/28/13

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Transcript for Behind the Speech: MLK's Lawyer Reveals Secrets of Crafting 'I Have a Dream'
Four men who -- and share his dream with millions. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Opened himself. To only a trusted few. Clarence Jones among them. He was more than just king's lawyer he was charged with crafting king's legacy speech. Now a professor at the University of San Francisco Jones irons out the wrinkles in history. About what -- in -- creating a document and magnetized. -- segregated country. When he came to Washington. He already -- With. A background of having discussed quite extensively. Some of the ideas. That he would put this -- The night before the march in Washington. Leaders from religious labor and civil rights groups huddled at the Willard Hotel to pitch ideas for -- speech Jones. Took detailed notes. And some weren't happy with what he was writing down. I became a little defensive and not really because they were attacking me for not being accurate reporting what I heard -- -- notes. The -- looking at this with a little bit of exasperation she's okay. Thank you so much for your advice. I'm going -- To correct it. I'm gonna go upstairs -- -- And finish my speech counsel -- mobile platform in touch with you later in the morning. And and I'll take whatever and should have. -- moments. The next morning Jones navigating a sea of more than 250000. People. To the steps of the Lincoln Memorial wondering what was in the final draft. He didn't get his answer until he heard king's voice boomed from the loudspeakers. -- prominent poet. -- -- -- arm of the matter look backward state and and McCain. As she speaks more and more. It and put together I say to myself. -- He's actually using. The text of material which I suggested was -- a lot of satisfaction when you're hearing. Your words. Well lets us see your words that's what I wanna yes and -- not your mind -- They were collective words. They were words that the as the right here we're putting -- form of what we talked about before. -- -- In a sense we've come to our nation's capital to cash -- -- Of the Arctic and. The farther -- that. Wrote the magnificent words but I'm. -- -- -- -- -- And then. More than halfway through the speech a spark ignited the fire of a southern Baptist preacher. Shout from his gospels favorite -- thing. -- -- -- Tellem about the dream Martin -- about the dream I have -- dream. One day -- that these people don't know. But -- that your husband Robert -- happen. The whole world was listening. Hanging on every word in a speech that almost wasn't every thing from the moment of the interaction by. But -- in Jackson everything thereafter. In the speech was fun things and the difference. So that that which everybody is celebrating. Fifty years later. Is -- space. That he didn't intend to -- The unintentional. That became the unforgettable. But not only that. Hurricanes. Let freedom ring from my god I've been offended me. Let freedom ring from Atlanta -- alone and calling yeah okay. -- -- -- --

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