Dr Martin Luther King, Jr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 15, 1929–April 4, 1968) was a Baptist minister and American political activist who was the most famous leader of the American civil rights movement. King won the Nobel Peace Prize before being assassinated in 1968. In 1977, King was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, by Jimmy Carter. For his promotion of non-violence and racial equality, King is considered a peacemaker and martyr by many people around the world. Martin Luther King Day was established in his honor.
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Martin Luther King Quotes
A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus.
A lie cannot live.
A man can't ride your back unless it's bent.
A man who won't die for something is not fit to live.
A nation or civilization that continues to produce soft-minded men purchases its own spiritual death on the installment plan.
A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.
A right delayed is a right denied.
A riot is at bottom the language of the unheard.
All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.
All progress is precarious, and the solution of one problem brings us face to face with another problem.
Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better.
An individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.
At the center of non-violence stands the principle of love.
Before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth, we were here. Before the pen of Jefferson etched across the pages of history the majestic words of the Declaration of Independence, we were here. If the inexpressible cruelties of slavery could not stop us, the opposition we now face will surely fail.
Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can't ride you unless your back is bent.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
Discrimination is a hellhound that gnaws at Negroes in every waking moment of their lives to remind them that the lie of their inferiority is accepted as truth in the society dominating them.
Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.
Everything that we see is a shadow cast by that which we do not see.
Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.
Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.
Have we not come to such an impasse in the modern world that we must love our enemies - or else? The chain reaction of evil - hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars - must be broken, or else we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.
He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.
History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.
Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable... Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.
Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.
I am not interested in power for power's sake, but I'm interested in power that is moral, that is right and that is good.
I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made straight and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.
I just want to do God's will. And he's allowed me to go to the mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the promised land! I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the promised land.
I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.
I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality... I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.
I submit that an individual who breaks the law that conscience tells him is unjust and willingly accepts the penalty by staying in jail to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the very highest respect for law.
I submit to you that if a man hasn't discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live.
I want to be the white man's brother, not his brother-in-law.
If a man is called to be a streetsweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great streetsweeper who did his job well.
If physical death is the price that I must pay to free my white brothers and sisters from a permanent death of the spirit, then nothing can be more redemptive.
If we are to go forward, we must go back and rediscover those precious values - that all reality hinges on moral foundations and that all reality has spiritual control.
If you succumb to the temptation of using violence in the struggle, unborn generations will be the recipients of a long and desolute night of bitterness, and your chief legacy to the future will be an endless reign of meaningless chaos.
If you will protest courageously, and yet with dignity and Christian love, when the history books are written in future generations, the historians will have to pause and say, "There lived a great people - a black people - who injected new meaning and dignity into the veins of civilization."
In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhwre. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.
It is incontestable and deplorable that Negroes have committed crimes; but they are derivative crimes. They are born of the greater crimes of the white society.
It is not enough to say we must not wage war. It is necessary to love peace and sacrifice for it.
It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me, and I think that's pretty important.
Law and order exist for the purpose of establishing justice and when they fail in this purpose they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress.
Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'
Life's most urgent question is: what are you doing for others?
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend.
Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.
Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation.
Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal.
Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness.
Nonviolence is a powerful and just weapon. which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals.
Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. You not only refuse to shoot a man, but you refuse to hate him.
Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.
Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.
One of the greatest casualties of the war in Vietnam is the Great Society... shot down on the battlefield of Vietnam.
One who breaks an unjust law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law.
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
Our loyalties must transend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective.
Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men.
Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.
Philanthropy is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary.
Pity may represent little more than the impersonal concern which prompts the mailing of a check, but true sympathy is the personal concern which demands the giving of one's soul.
Property is intended to serve life, and no matter how much we surround it with rights and respect, it has no personal being. It is part of the earth man walks on. It is not man.
Put yourself in a state of mind where you say to yourself, "Here is an opportunity for me to celebrate like never before, my own power, my own ability to get myself to do whatever is necessary."
Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think.
Science investigates religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge which is power religion gives man wisdom which is control.
Seeing is not always believing.
Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will.
So I'm happy tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord!
Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.
The art of acceptance is the art of making someone who has just done you a small favor wish that he might have done you a greater one.
The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: "If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?" But... the good Samaritan reversed the question: "If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?"
The hope of a secure and livable world lies with disciplined nonconformists who are dedicated to justice, peace and brotherhood.
The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict.
The limitation of riots, moral questions aside, is that they cannot win and their participants know it. Hence, rioting is not revolutionary but reactionary because it invites defeat. It involves an emotional catharsis, but it must be followed by a sense of futility.
The means by which we live have outdistanced the ends for which we live. Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men.
The moral arc of the universe bends at the elbow of justice.
The Negro needs the white man to free him from his fears. The white man needs the Negro to free him from his guilt.
The Negro's great stumbling block in the drive toward freedom is not the White Citizens Councilor or the Ku Klux Klanner but the white moderate who is more devoted to order than to justice.
The past is prophetic in that it asserts loudly that wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows.
The quality, not the longevity, of one's life is what is important.
The question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be... The nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists.
The sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality.
The time is always right to do what is right.
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
There is nothing more tragic than to find an individual bogged down in the length of life, devoid of breadth.
War is a poor chisel to carve out tomorrow.
Wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows.
We are not makers of history. We are made by history.
We have guided missiles and misguided men.
We may have all come on different ships, but we're in the same boat now.
We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.
We must build dikes of courage to hold back the flood of fear.
We must concentrate not merely on the negative expulsion of war but the postive affirmation of peace.
We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.
We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.
We must use time creatively.
We who in engage in nonviolent direct action are not the creators of tension. We merely bring to the surface the hidden tension that is already alive.
We will have to repent in this generation not merely for the vitriolic words and actions of the bad people, but for the appalling silence of the good people.
We will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.
Whatever your life's work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn could do it no better.
Yes, I see the Church as the body of Christ. But, oh! How we have blemished and scarred that body through social neglect and through fear of being nonconformists.
Quotes originally compiled by www.brainyquote.com
Martin Luther King, Jr. Chronological Biography
Martin Luther King, Jr. is born to Rev. and Mrs. Martin Luther King, Sr. (former Alberta Christine Williams) in Atlanta, Georgia.
1935 – 1944
Dr. King attends David T. Howard Elementary School, Atlanta University Laboratory School, and Booker T. Washington High School. He passes the entrance examination to Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia without graduating from high school.
Dr. King is licensed to preach.
Dr. King is ordained to the Baptist ministry and appointed associate pastor at Ebenezer.
Dr. King graduates from Morehouse College with a BA degree in Sociology.
Dr. King enters Crozer Theological Seminary in Chester, Pennsylvania. After hearing Dr. A. J. Muste and Dr. Mordecai W. Johnson preach on the life and teachings of Mahatma Gandhi, he begins to study Gandhi seriously.
Dr. King graduates from Crozer with a Bachelor of Divinity degree.
Dr. King marries Coretta Scott in Marion, Alabama.
The Supreme Court of the United States rules unanimously in Brown vs. Board of Education that racial segregation in public schools is unconstitutional.
Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr. appoints Dr. King as the twentieth pastor of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama.
Dr. King receives a Ph.D. degree in Systematic Theology from Boston University.
The Kings’ first child, Yolanda Denise, is born in Montgomery, Alabama.
Mrs. Rosa Parks, a forty-two year old Montgomery seamstress, refuses to relinquish her bus seat to a white man and is arrested.
The first day of the Montgomery bus boycott and the trial date of Mrs. Parks. A meeting of movement leaders is held. Dr. King is unanimously elected president of the Montgomery Improvement Association.
The Montgomery Bus Company suspends service in black neighborhoods.
Dr. King is arrested on a charge of traveling thirty miles per hour in a twenty-five miles per hour zone in Montgomery. He is released on his own recognizance.
A bomb is thrown onto the porch of Dr. King’s Montgomery home. Mrs. King and Mrs. Roscoe Williams, wife of a church member, are in the house with baby Yolanda Denise. No one is injured.
A suit is filed in Federal District Court asking that Montgomery’s travel segregation laws be declared unconstitutional.
Dr. King is indicted with other figures in the Montgomery bus boycott on the charge of being party to a conspiracy to hinder and prevent the operation of business without “just or legal cause.”
A United States District Court rules that racial segregation on city bus lines is unconstitutional.
Dr. King is a speaker before the platform committee of the Democratic Party in Chicago, Illinois.
Mayor Gayle of Montgomery, Alabama instructs the city’s legal department “to file such proceedings as it may deem proper to stop the operation of car pools and transportation systems growing out of the boycott.”
The United States Supreme Court affirms the decision of the three-judge district court in declaring Alabama’s state and local laws requiring segregation on buses unconstitutional.
Federal injunctions prohibiting segregation on buses are served on city and bus company officials in Montgomery, Alabama. Injunctions are also served on state officials.
An unexploded bomb is discovered on the front porch of the King’s house.
The Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) is founded.
Dr. King is featured on the cover of Time magazine.
Dr. King delivers a speech for the Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom celebrating the third anniversary of the Supreme Court’s desegregation decision. The speech, titled, “Give Us The Ballot,” is given at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Dr. King meets with the Vice President of the United States, Richard M. Nixon.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower federalizes the Arkansas National Guard to escort nine Negro students to an all-white high school in Little Rock, Arkansas.
The first Civil Rights Act since Reconstruction is passed by Congress, creating the Civil Rights Commission and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice.
A second child, Martin Luther III, is born to Dr. and Mrs. King.
Dr. King, along with Roy Wilkins of the NAACP, A. Philip Randolph, and Lester Granger meet with President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Dr. King is arrested on a charge of loitering (later changed to “failure to obey an officer”) in the vicinity of the Montgomery Recorder’s Court. He is released on $100.00 bond.
Dr. King is convicted after pleading “Not Guilty” on the charge of failure to obey an officer. The fine is paid almost immediately, over Dr. King’s objection, by Montgomery Police Commissioner Clyde C. Sellers.
Dr. King’s book, Stride Toward Freedom: The Montgomery Story, is published by Harper & Row.
Dr. King is stabbed in the chest by Mrs. Izola Curry, who is subsequently alleged to be mentally deranged. The stabbing occurs in Harlem, New York while Dr. King is autographing his recently published book. His condition was said to be serious but not critical.
Dr. King meets with Walter Reuther, President of the United Auto Workers Union, in Detroit, Michigan.
February 2 - 10
Dr. and Mrs. King spend a month in India studying Gandhi’s March techniques of nonviolence as guests of Prime Minister Jawaharal Nehru.
The King family moves to Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. King becomes co-pastor, with his father, of the Ebenezer Baptist Church.
The first lunch counter sit-in to desegregate eating facilities is held by students in Greensboro, North Carolina.
A warrant is issued for Dr. King’s arrest on charges that he had falsified his 1956 and 1958 Alabama state income tax returns.
The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) is founded to coordinate student protests at Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina on a temporary basis. (It is to become a permanent organization in October 1960.) Dr. King and James Lawson are the keynote speakers at the Shaw University founding.
Dr. King is acquitted of the tax evasion charge by an all white jury in Montgomery, Alabama.
Dr. King and A. Philip Randolph announce plans for picketing both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions.
Dr. King meets with John F. Kennedy (candidate for President of the United States) about racial matters.
Dr. King is arrested at an Atlanta sit-in and is jailed on a charge of violating the state’s trespassing law.
October 22 - 27
The trespassing charges are dropped. All jailed demonstrators are released except Dr. King, who is held on a charge of violating a probated sentence in a traffic arrest case. He is transferred to the Dekalb County Jail in Decatur, Georgia, and is then transferred to the Reidsville State Prison. He is released from the Reidsville State Prison on a $2,000.00 bond.
A third child, Dexter Scott, is born to Dr. and Mrs. King in Atlanta, Georgia.
The first group of Freedom Riders, with the intent of integrating interstate buses, leaves Washington, D.C. by Greyhound bus. The group, organized by the Congress for Racial Equality (CORE), leaves shortly after the Supreme Court has outlawed segregation in interstate transportation terminals. The bus is burned outside of Anniston, Alabama on May 14. A mob beats the Freedom Riders upon their arrival in Birmingham, Alabama. The Freedom Riders are arrested in Jackson, Mississippi, and spend forty to sixty days in Parchman Penitentiary.
Dr. King arrives in Albany, Georgia in response to a call from Dr. W. G. Anderson, the leader of the Albany Movement to desegregate public facilities, which began in January 1961.
Dr. King is arrested at an Albany, Georgia demonstration. He is charged with obstructing the sidewalk and parading without a permit.
Dr. King is tried and convicted for leading the December march in Albany, Georgia.
Dr. King is invited to join the protests in Birmingham, Alabama.
Dr. King is arrested at an Albany, Georgia city hall prayer vigil and jailed on charges of failure to obey a police officer, obstructing the sidewalk and disorderly conduct.
James Meredith makes his first attempt to enroll at the University of Mississippi. He is actually enrolled by Supreme Court order and is escorted onto the Oxford, Mississippi campus by U.S. Marshals on October 1, 1962.
Dr. King meets with President John F. Kennedy at the White House for a one-hour conference.
The King’s fourth child, Bernice Albertine, is born.
Sit-in demonstrations are held in Birmingham, Alabama to protest segregation of eating facilities. Dr. King is arrested during a demonstration.
Dr. King writes the “Letter From A Birmingham Jail” while imprisoned for demonstrating.
May 3 - 5
Eugene “Bull” Connor, Director of Public Safety of Birmingham, Alabama, orders the use of police dogs and fire hoses against the marching protesters, including young adults and children.
The Supreme Court of the United States rules Birmingham, Alabama’s segregation ordinances unconstitutional.
Dr. King’s book, Strength To Love, is published by Harper & Row.
Governor George C. Wallace tries to stop the court ordered integration of the University of Alabama by “standing in the schoolhouse door” and personally refusing entrance to black students and Justice Department officials. President John F. Kennedy then federalizes the Alabama National Guard, and Governor Wallace removes himself from blocking the entrance of the Negro students.
Medgar Evers, NAACP leader in Jackson, Mississippi, is assassinated at his home in the early morning darkness. His memorial service is held in Jackson on June 15. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, Washington D.C. on June 19.
The March on Washington, the first large-scale integrated protest march, is held in Washington, D.C. Dr. King delivers his “I Have A Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. Afterwards he and other Civil Rights leaders meet with President John F. Kennedy in the White House.
Governor Wallace orders the Alabama state troopers to stop the court ordered integration of Alabama’s elementary and high schools until he is enjoined by court injunction from doing so. By September 10 specific schools are actually integrated by court order.
Four young girls are killed in a Birmingham, Alabama church bombing.
President Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas, Texas.
COFO (Council of Federated Organizations) initiates the Mississippi Summer Project, a voter registration drive organized and run by black and white students.
May - June
Dr. King joins other SCLC workers in a demonstration for the integration of public accommodations in St. Augustine, Florida. He is jailed.
Dr. King’s book, Why We Can’t Wait, is published by Harper & Row.
Three civil rights workers, James Chaney (black), Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner (both white), are reported missing after a short trip to Philadelphia, Mississippi.
Dr. King attends the signing of the Public Accommodations Bill, (Part of the Civil Rights Act of 1964) by President Lyndon B. Johnson in the White House.
Riots occur in Harlem, New York. One black man is killed.
Riots occur in New Jersey, Illinois and Pennsylvania.
The bodies of civil rights workers James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner are discovered by FBI Agents buried near the town of Philadelphia, Mississippi. Neshoba County Sheriff Rainey and his deputy, Cecil Price, are allegedly implicated in the murders.
Dr. King and Rev. Ralph Abernathy visit West Berlin at the invitation of Mayor Willy Brandt.
Dr. King has an audience with Pope Paul VI at the Vatican.
Dr. King receives the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway.
Malcolm X, leader of the Organization of Afro-American Unity and former Black Muslim leader, is murdered in New York City.
A group of marching demonstrators (from SNCC and SCLC) led by SCLC’s Hosea Williams are beaten when crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge on their planned march to Montgomery, Alabama, from Selma, Alabama. Their attackers were state highway patrolmen under the direction of Al Lingo and sheriff’s deputies under the leadership of Jim Clark. An order by Governor Wallace had prohibited the march.
Unitarian minister, James Reeb, is beaten by four white segregationists in Selma. He dies two days later.
President Johnson addresses the nation and Congress. He describes the voting rights bill he will submit to Congress in two days and uses the slogan of the Civil Rights Movement, “We Shall Overcome.”
Sheriff’s deputies and police on horseback in Montgomery, Alabama beat black and white demonstrators.
March 21 – 25
Over three thousand protest marchers leave Selma for a march to Montgomery, Alabama protected by federal troops. They are joined along the way by a total of twenty-five thousand marchers. Upon reaching the capitol, they hear an address by Dr. King.
Mrs. Viola Liuzzo, wife of a Detroit Teamsters Union business agent, is shot and killed while driving a carload of marchers back to Selma.
Dr. King visits Chicago, Illinois. SCLC joins with the Coordinating Council of Community Organizations (CCCO), led by Al Raby, in the Chicago Project.
August - December
In Alabama, SCLC spearheads voter registration campaigns in Green and Wilcox counties, and in the cities of Montgomery, Birmingham, and Eutaw, Alabama.
The 1965 Voting Rights Act is signed by President Johnson.
In Watts, the black ghetto of Los Angeles, riots leave a total of thirty-five dead. Twenty-eight are black.
Dr. King rents an apartment in the black ghetto of Chicago, Illinois.
Dr. King meets with Elijah Muhammad, leader of the Black Muslims, in Chicago.
Dr. King takes over a Chicago slum building and is sued by its owner.
The Supreme Court of the United States rules all poll tax unconstitutional.
Dr. King tours Alabama to help elect black candidates.
The Alabama Primary is held, and for the first time since Reconstruction, blacks vote in significant numbers.
An antiwar statement by Dr. King is read at a large Washington rally to protest the war in Vietnam. Dr. King agrees to serve as a co-chairman of Clergy and Laymen Concerned About Vietnam.
Stokely Carmichael and Willie Ricks (SNCC) use the slogan “Black Power” in public for the first time before reporters in Greenwood, Mississippi.
James Meredith is shot soon after beginning his 220-mile “March Against Fear” from Memphis, Tennessee to Jackson, Mississippi.
Dr. King launches a drive to make Chicago an “open city” regarding housing.
Dr. King is stoned in Chicago as he leads a march through crowds of angry whites in the Gage Park section of Chicago’s southwest side.
SCLC launches a project with the aim of integrating schools in Grenada, Mississippi.
SCLC initiates the Alabama Citizen Education Project in Wilcox County.
Dr. King writes his book Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community? while in Jamaica.
Alabama is ordered to desegregate all public schools.
Dr. King attacks the government’s Vietnam policy in a speech at the Chicago Coliseum.
Dr. King makes a statement about the war in Vietnam, “Beyond Vietnam,” at the Riverside Church in New York City.
One black student is killed in a riot on the campus of all Negro Jackson State College in Jackson, Mississippi.
The Justice Department reports that more than 50 percent of all eligible black voters are registered in Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana and South Carolina.
Twenty-three people die and 725 are injured in riots in Newark, New Jersey.
Forty-three die and 324 are injured in the Detroit riots -- the worst of the century.
Black leaders, Martin Luther King, Jr., A. Philip Randolph, Roy Wilkins and Whitney Young appeal for an end to the riots, “which have proved ineffective and damaging to the civil rights cause and the entire nation.”
The Supreme Court upholds the contempt-of-court convictions of Dr. King and seven other black leaders who led the 1963 marches in Birmingham, Alabama. Dr. King and his aides enter jail to serve four-day sentences.
Dr. King announces the formation by SCLC of a Poor People’s Campaign, with the aim of representing the problems of poor blacks and whites.
Sanitation workers strike in Memphis, Tennessee.
Dr. King leads six thousand protesters on a march through downtown Memphis in support of striking sanitation workers. Disorder breaks out during which black youths loot stores. One sixteen-year-old is killed and fifty people are injured.
Dr. King’s last speech titled “I’ve Been to the Mountain Top” is delivered at Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee.
Dr. King is assassinated as he stands talking on the balcony of his second-floor room at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis. He dies in St. Joseph’s Hospital from a gunshot wound in the neck.
Dr. King is buried in Atlanta, Georgia.
Presidential candidate Senator Robert Kennedy is shot in Los Angeles and dies the next day.
Following passage of Public Law 98-144, President Ronald Reagan signs a proclamation declaring the third Monday in January of each year a public holiday in honor of the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
A jury of twelve citizens of Memphis, Shelby County, TN concluded in Coretta Scott King, Martin Luther King, III, Bernice King, Dexter Scott King and Yolanda King Vs. Loyd Jowers and Other Unknown Conspirators that Loyd Jowers and governmental agencies including the City of Memphis, the State of Tennessee, and the federal government were party to the conspiracy to assassinate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Original chronology compiled by http://www.thekingcenter.org/mlk/chronology.html
(For more information see Wikipedia)
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