Martin Luther King Jr.

Civil Rights Activist

Background

Martin Luther King Jr. was born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia. He grew up happy family. He was the middle child of three. His father was a pastor and church was important to his family.


King went to a segregated high school, at Booker T. Washington High. He then went to college at Morehouse College, a school for Negro students only. He graduated in 1948. Then he decided he wanted to be a pastor like his father. He attended Crozer Theological Seminary. Later, he received a doctoral degree from Boston University in 1955. He became Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Impact on Civil Rights Movement

Bus Boycotts

As president of the Montgomery Improvement Association, King played an instrumental role in organizing the first bus boycotts in Montgomery, Alabama. The protest came in response to the arrests of Rosa Parks and Claudette Colvin for refusing to give up their seats for white passengers. King worked with the NAACP to help organize the demonstration, rally support, and spread the word to others. He used his influence in the community and his church sermons to convince people to join in the movement.

March on Washington

King is known for being one of the most influential civil rights leaders in America. He organized many movements and gave important speeches. By far the most memorable one happened on August 23, 1963 in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. This was during the March on Washington, which King helped organize. There were over 200,000 people who came out to march in a protest for jobs and freedom. Black and white people came together to show their support for civil rights in one of the largest and most famous events in the Civil Rights Movement.