Social Studies 8A
Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr. is a well known and an inspiring man to all cultures of the world. King was and still is one of the most influential heroes. King's views and believes helped African Americans through the 50's and 60's to the rights and liberties that was their right. King faced many obstacles on his journey, things like jail and even assassination attempts. Despite these obstacles, he became a successful leader during the Civil Rights Movement and after his death, by guiding African Americans in a non-violent and positive direction for the fight to secure rights and equality for blacks.
Martin Luther King Jr. was born on January 15th, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia. His father was a Baptist minister and his mom was a schoolteacher. At a very young age he was growing up to be a very smart boy. At the age of five, he was already in first grade but once his teacher found out his real age, he was expelled from school. King finished high school at Morehouse in Atlanta. In June of 1948 he graduated with a BA in Sociology from college. In May 1951, he graduated Cruzer with a bachelor in Divinity. He went on to Boston University where he studied systematic theology as a graduate student. (“Africa Within”)
In 1954, Martin Luther King became pastor of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in
Montgomery, Alabama. He was always a strong worker for civil rights for members of his race. “King became a member of the executive committee of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the leading organization of its kind in the nation.” Early in December, 1955, he accepted the leadership of the first great Black nonviolent demonstration many times in the United States.
On December first, Rosa Parks was arrested for not giving up her bus seat to a white person in Montgomery, Alabama. Shortly after Martin Luther King Jr. became the president of the Montgomery Improvement Association. On December 21, 1956, after the Supreme Court of the United States had declared the laws unconstitutional, requiring segregation on buses, Negroes and whites rode the buses as equals. During these days of boycott, King was arrested, his home was bombed, but at the same time he came to others as a Negro leader. (“The Autobiography of Martin Luther King Jr.”)
On June 18, Martin Luther King Jr. married Coretta Scott in Marlon, Alabama. In 1955 lots of things happened that will shaped King himself. In June, King received his PhD, months later he had his first child in November and later had three more. His second child, Martin Luther King III was born in 1957. His third child was Dexter and was born in 1961. There last child was Bernice Albertine was born in 1963. (“Autobiography by Clayborne Carson”)
In 1957 he was elected president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, an organization formed to give new leadership for the now civil rights movement. The ideals were formed around an organization he took from Christianity. In the years between 1957 and 1968, he traveled over six million miles and spoke over twenty-five hundred times, appearing wherever there was injustice, protest, and action to blacks. During this time he also wrote five books as
well as many articles. In these years, he led a massive protest in Birmingham, Alabama, that caught the attention of the entire world, providing what he called a “coalition of conscience andinspiring his "Letter from a Birmingham Jail", a manifesto, -which is a public declaration of principles and intentions relating to religion beliefs- of the Negro revolution; he planned the drives in Alabama for the registrate of Negroes as voters. He also directed the peaceful march on Washington, D.C., of 250,000 people to whom he delivered his speech, "l Have a Dream". King talked with President John F. Kennedy...
Cited: 1. “Martin Luther King Jr.” http://wwwafricawithin.com/bios/martin_luther_king_htm Biography Resource Center, 2001, Gale Group, Inc
3. “Martin Luther King Jr.” Marshall Frady, 2002
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