Right, you had a question. We looked over your list of speeches and 35 of them should be fine to reprint either because they were prepared by an employee of the U.S. government within the course of employment, or because they are old enough to qualify for the public domain. But five of them (below) are either protected under copyright or copyright status is unclear.
- William Faulkner's Nobel Prize Speech (1950)
- Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" (1963)
- Malcolm X's "The Ballot or the Bullet" (1964)
- Stokely Carmichael's "Black Power"(1966)
- Mary Fisher's "A Whisper of Aids"(1992)
Here's the breakdown.
William Faulkner (above). William Faulkner's Nobel award "Banquet Speech" appears to be copyrighted by the Nobel Prize organization. (Our guess is that recipients assign copyright ownership.) Seek permission at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Martin Luther King. The MLK "I Have a Dream" speech is protected under copyright (there was a court challenge, later settled). Seek authorization from the Estate of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Intellectual Properties Management One Freedom Plaza 449 Auburn Avenue NE Atlanta, GA 30312 Fax: 404-526-8969.
Malcolm X. We're not clear on the copyright status of the "Ballot or the Bullet" speech. The official Malcolm X site has links to the estate's licensing agent. More information needed.
Stokely Carmichael. The copyright status of Carmichael's famous "Black Power" speech is unclear. Over at the American Rhetoric website, the speech has this copyright notice: "Text = Uncertain. A good faith effort was made to locate the copyright holder(s). Please contact AmericanRhetoric.com if have information about the copyright holder(s). "
Mary Fisher. All signs indicate that Mary Fisher's groundbreaking speech to the Republican convention is still protected under copyright. You can contact her at her website.