Michael Luther King, Jr. wasborn on January 15th toschoolteacher, Alberta Kingand Baptist minister, MichaelLuther King residing at 501Auburn Avenue. His fatherlater changed both their namesto Martin Luther King.
King grew up in thechurch and was well-read in the scripture.Following thefamily tradition, hedecided to become aminister.
King entered MorehouseCollege at the age of 15and graduated in 1948 witha Bachelor of Arts Degreein Sociology.
King enrolled in Crozer TheologicalSeminary in Chester, Pennsylvaniawhere he graduated with a Bachelor ofDivinity Degree in 1951.
King began hisministry in 1954 asthe pastor ofDexter AvenueBaptist Church inMontgomery,Alabama.
He received a Doctorate of Philosophy in Systematic Theology from Boston University on June 5, 1955.
December 1, 1955, RosaParks took a stand for herrace by refusing to giveher seat to a whitepassenger. This was thecatalyst for beginningthe Civil RightsMovement. Followingthis event, King wasselected as president ofthe MontgomeryImprovement Association.
Sit-ins at “all white” lunch counterspromoted King’s mission of non-violent protest.
A Media Day was held on May 20, 1956 after thebus boycott in Montgomery. The boycott lasted 381 days.
Pictured here withwife, Coretta,Dr.Martin LutherKing, Jr. began toestablish himselfas the nationalleader of the civilrights movement,leading boycottsand stagingprotests againstsegregation in theSouth.
“And you know, myfriends, there comes atime when people gettired of being trampledover by the iron feet ofoppression.”These words helped tobegin his leadershiprole for the cause ofAfrican Americanequality!
King, inspired byGandhis non-militant stance,began to advocatenonviolent protest.He began to traveland speak, makingan average of 208speeches per year.
King’s mission was to empower his people. His platform was: We can stick together.Our leaders do not have to sell out.Threats and violence do not intimidate us.We believe in ourselves.Economics is part of our struggle.We have a powerful weapon: non-violent resistance.We as Negroes have arrived!
While King was at theHotel Albert in Harlempromoting his book, StrideToward Freedom, he wasstabbed by a derangedAfrican American woman. He recuperated in the hospital following the incident.
In 1960, King was againarrested. He receivedstrong encouragementas a result of atelephone call to Corettafrom John F. Kennedy.
Dr. King made his famous “I have adream” speech.
Many opponents to Dr.King’s leadership duringthe Civil Rights Movementtried to intimidate him andhis family. While King wasin St. Augustine, Florida tomeet with other integrationleaders, a shot was firedthrough a window in hisrented beach cottage. Noone was home at the timeof the shooting.
On December 10,1965, Dr. King wonthe Nobel PeacePrize.
Dr. King’s success was attributed to his consistently shared principles:Fundamental ChristianityChurchReligious ideas drawn from traditionAmerica’s founding ideas
During the Vietnam War, King began to rethink his mission and turned his focus from racial discrimination to problems of King expressed hisdisenchantment with poverty andPresident Johnson’s Vietnam policies. economic injustice.
On April 4, 1968, whilestanding on a balcony at theLorraine Motel in Memphis,King was assassinated byJames Earl Ray.
The country,along withCoretta andKing’syoungdaughterBernice,mournedhis death.
Dr. Martin LutherKing, Jr. isentombed at theFreedom HallComplex. This sitewas listed as aNational HistoricLandmark on May5, 1977 and wasmade a NationalHistoric Site onOctober 10, 1980.
President RonaldReagan signed thebill to makeJanuary 20th, thecelebration of Dr.King’s birthday anational holiday.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. continuesto make an impact in the life oftoday’s people! His story lives on…