Just ahead of the holiday, The Obsidian Collection has announced that its consumer-facing digital photo portal will offer rare images of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as a non-fungible token (NFT) collection.
According to PR Newswire, the images — captured by renowned photographer John Tweedle — feature Dr. King during his historic visit to the city of Chicago in 1966.
Tweedle, who became the first African American to be hired by a major newspaper, captured Dr. King in his element as he visited the windy city to challenge slumlords, fight against institutional racism and step to Mayor Richard J. Daley, who served the city at the time. The photos also include a visit where Dr. King spoke to a crowd at Soldier Field and his time attending a fundraiser in support of the Civil Rights Movement during the 60s that was held at the iconic Chicago international Amphitheatre.
The fundraiser was attended by big names including the late Sidney Poitier, Harry Belafonte, and Mahalia Jackson.
“Obsidian will be the gateway to historic black NFTs such as this,” said Ashley Ford, Executive Director of the collection, in a news release. “The most important fact is these rarely seen collectibles are made available to new generations in new mediums.”
Five of Tweddle’s images will be offered by Obsidian by way of author, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Hermene Hartman, who received the images from the late legendary photographer’s widow shortly after his death in 1981.
“We always talk about King, the Southerner, but people forget that Dr. King came to Chicago and disrupted our city,” said Hartman. “He let John up close and personal. Consequently, he took photos no one else had opportunities to take.”