Michael Luther King Jr. was born on January 15, 1929, in Atlanta, Georgia.
He was the son of Reverend Michael Luther King Sr. and Alberta Williams King.
In the year of 1934, Michael Luther King Sr. went to a Fifth Baptist World Alliance Congress and learned about the German reformer Martin Luther. After this event, he legally changed both his and his son's name from Michael to Martin.
King shared his childhood home with his two siblings, Christine and Alfred, his parents, and his grandparents.
Father was a was the pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church and a civil rights leader in the early stage of the movement.
Mother was was an accomplished organist and choir leader
Life in High School
At the time, there were laws of segregation known as Jim Crow laws. These were laws that segregated black and white people
Martin Luther King Jr. attended Booker T. Washington High School
Martin excelled in his studies and even at an early age, was a very talented public speaker. He took part in many school debates.
Martin was so intelligent, that he finished high school early and went on to Morehouse College in his junior year of high school.
In his junior year of college, he went on to pursue a career in ministry
The Battle of Segregation
Martin had battled segregation for his entire life
Jim Crow laws
Shoe Store example
He had witnessed many racial events in his life, such as the Montgomery bus boycott. This event pushed him over the edge and he knew it was time to take a stand
The night Rosa Parks was arrested, it was decided that Martin Luther King Jr. would lead the citywide bus boycott, which lasted 382 days
King and other civil rights leaders started working on preparing speeches and protests to end segregation
In the Spring of 1693, Martin organized a peaceful protest in Birmingham, Alabama that turned violent
Birmingham police came at supporters with police dogs and fire hoses
King was arrested and jailed
This event did not stop him
While in jail, he continued to talk about his theory of nonviolence and equality among all people
King and his supporters had already been planing the mass demonstration in Washington D.C.
'I Have a Dream'
On August 28, 1963, King's march consisted of more than 200,000 people of all races at Lincoln Memorial where he gave the famous "I Have a Dream" speech
His speech emphasized the idea that one day all people could come together regardless of the color of their skin
One of the most famous quotes from this speech is, "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."
This speech had a huge impact across the nation
People from cities not experiencing racial tension began to take notice and take a stand against Jim Crow laws
As a result of the many protests, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed
This authorized the federal government to enforce the desegregation of public accommodations and outlawing discrimination in publicly owned facilities
Although, the long term goal of ending segregation was reached, the struggles of racism were far from over
King continued to lead marches and protests across the country
"The Bloody Sunday"
Most people think that after the act was passed, the racial troubles went away but that is anything but the case
On March 7, 1965, a televised march planned from Selma, AL to the capital turned violent
Police met protesters with nightsticks and tear gas
Many were bloodied and severely injured
This violent event is known as "The Bloody Sunday"
In the spring of 1968, a labor strike by Memphis Sanitation workers drew King to the city for a speech and protest
The day after his speech, on April 4th, 1968, King was asassinated standing on the balcony outside the Lorraine Motel
He was struck by a sniper's bullet from James Earl Ray
This event caused riots in more than 100 cities across the nation
Ray was sentenced to 99 years in prison and died there in April 23, 1998
Why is King viewed as a "Good Person"?
King fought till the death for what he believed in regardless of what people thought and regardless of his well being
He put others before himself. He put himself and his family in danger so that America could change forever
He was harmed in every way but didn't stop until his job was done
He accomplished so much but never even got to experience the benefits of all of his work that he dedicated his life to
The world as we know it would be so different without his passion and persistence for equality among all
Martin Luther King Jr. Day was celebrated yesterday as a reminder to all he has done for our country
Today there are many schools and public places named after him