Most people know of Dr. King because of his famous speech, but who was Martin Luther King? The man was known for being the voice of the civil rights movement. But there is much you probably don’t know about Martin Luther King
MLK was a Baptist minister and founder and president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Besides being a powerful speaker, Dr. King was an author of several books, a political activist, and the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
He was influenced by spiritual and inspiration leaders in developing his own approach to working towards racial equality and challenged everyone to do the same. He counts as his mentors, Jesus, Henry David Thoreau and Mahatma Gandhi.
He is known for participating in many marches to raise awareness for social injustice and delivered speeches that are still relevant today. The most memorable of his appearances was marked by the legendary “I Have a Dream” speech that was delivered at the Washington Monument in 1963.
His work however was cut short when he was assassinated in April 1968. Standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Hotel in Memphis Tennessee, he was gunned down allegedly by James Earl Ray. Even though Ray admitted to the crime, he later recanted his confession and spent the rest of his life trying to prove he didn’t do it. The controversy continued for years and was even embraced by Dr. King’s widow and children.
Martin Luther King left an impact on society that will never be forgotten. King’s widow created The Center for Nonviolent Social Change in the basement of their home a year after MLK died. But in 1981 it was moved to its current location and is known simply as The King Center. The Center is homage to the late great Martin Luther King and houses all of the speeches, video clips, television appearances and everything else that encompasses his life’s work.
And since 1983, the third Monday in January has been known as Martin Luther King Jr. day. It is a federal holiday and commemorates the life of a national icon.