Video: Late Congressman John Lewis Reflects on the Significance of the Martin Luther King Federal Building


In August 1988, Congress passed a bill sponsored by U.S. Representative John Lewis formally naming the Atlanta U.S. Post Office Annex as the Martin Luther King, Jr. Federal Building.

In an interview featured in a new video from GSA’s Atlanta-based team in Region 4, the late Congressman recalled his efforts to honor Dr. King. “When I first entered Congress in 1987 as a member of the Public Works and Transportation Committee and the Public Building Subcommittee, I saw the need to name something very visible in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,” Rep. Lewis recalled. “I visited this building so many times when I first came to Atlanta in 1963.” 

Built by the Work Projects Administration that employed millions of Americans during the New Deal, the post office and later federal building employed a diverse workforce throughout its lifetime.

As recalled by Lewis, public customers of the post office and local federal agencies would have included Dr. King, his family and a wide range of Atlanta residents from all walks of life.

“I knew this building was the building to be named in honor of Dr. King,” Lewis said. “I’m sure as a young person he would visit this building to mail letters. His friends, his sister, his brother, his mother, his father, members of Ebenezer Baptist Church.”

We are proud to bear the name Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on our Atlanta regional office building, and welcome you to enjoy this video showcasing the legacy the building represents.


Last Reviewed: 2022-01-14