Martin Luther King, Jr.

people celebrate Martin Luther King Day.photo.
Martin Luther King Day

Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929–1968) was born in Georgia, Atlanta and had his roots in the African American Baptist Church. He saw the potential for using the church as a platform in the struggle against racial discrimination.

Mr. King was a successful student, took his doctorate and was ordained minister in 1947. He worked as a pastor in a church in Montgomery, Alabama (1954) at the time of the bus boycotts, and he personally led one of the longest lasting boycotts.

He was an exceptional orator and a spirited and courageous leader, having to face both threats on his life, arrests and bomb attacks.

King was made president of the SCLC (the Southern Christian Leadership Conference), formed in 1956.He spoke out for civil rights and black people’s voting rights and put forward his views in a meeting with President John F. Kennedy (1962). He also led several nonviolent protests, demonstrations and sit-ins. King was chosen Man of the Year by Time Magazine in 1964 and awarded the highly acknowledged Nobel Peace Prize in the same year.

Finally he had the worldwide recognition he deserved. He was the third black man to receive the prize and he was also the youngest winner at only 35 years of age. Less than four years later, he was assassinated.