Martin Luther King Jr portrait in talking mural by Susan Greene in SF
MLK talking about the war in Vietnam (1 MB mp3)
From Freedom Archives audio archives
Photo: Scott Braley

Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929 -- 1968) was a vital figure of the modern civil rights era. His lectures and dialogues stirred the concern and sparked the conscience of a generation. The movements and marches he led brought significant changes in the fabric of American life through his courage and selfless devotion. This devotion gave direction to thirteen years of civil rights activities. His charismatic leadership inspired men and women, young and old, in this nation and around the world.

Dr. King’s concept of “somebodiness,” which symbolized the celebration of human worth and the conquest of subjugation, gave black and poor people hope and a sense of dignity. His philosophy of nonviolent direct action, and his strategies for rational and non-destructive social change, galvanized the conscience of this nation and reordered its priorities. His wisdom, his words, his actions, his commitment, and his dream for a new way of life are intertwined with the American experience.

Martin Luther King, Jr. at the microphone

Photo Credit: Francis Miller, LIFE magazine

More: The King Center