We all know Martin Luther King Jr. for his famous “I Have A Dream” speech but there is much more to this intelligent man than just his words.
Here are 5 facts about Martin that give you a deeper look into his life.
1. His real first name wasn’t Martin.
His actual first name was Michel King Jr. His father, a minister at a Baptist Church, visited Germany and became inspired by the Protestant Reformation leader, Martin Luther King Sr. He then began calling himself and his son this name.
2. He was the youngest person for his time to receive a Nobel Peace Prize.
He received a noble peace prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolence when he was just 35 years old. His prize included a check for $54,123, which he donated to various organizations – Congress on Racial Equality (CORE), the NAACP, National Council of Negro Women, Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) and others – to aid in the progress of the civil rights movement.
3. King is the only non-president to have a national holiday in his name
In 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed a bill that would establish a nationally observed holiday in remembrance of King. He is the only non-president to have received such an honor; the other American to have a holiday commemorated in his name is George Washington.
4. From 1957 to 1968, King traveled over 6 million miles and spoke over 2,500 times
King was elected the president of the SCLC (an organization formed to aid the growing civil rights movement) and led it until he was murdered in 1968. This group’s goal was to advance the cause of the civil rights movement in a peaceful way. He traveled across the nation, visiting cities for speeches and protests. During these 11 years, King also wrote five books and published many articles.
5.The civil rights leader was arrested 29 times and assaulted four times
Because King was admired by so many, he was seen as a threat to American security by police officials. He went to jail nearly 30 times, arrested for acts of ‘civil disobedience,’ including the time he was jailed in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1956 for driving five miles per hour over the speed limit. After his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963, the FBI intensified their investigation into King and the SCLC.
For more facts on King visit https://theculturetrip.com/north-america/usa/articles/10-facts-you-should-know-about-martin-luther-king-jr/