Today in American history…Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was born on January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia.
He was essential in organizing the very first major protest of the Civil Rights Movement with the Montgomery Bus Boycott which was a political and social protest campaign speaking out against the policy of racial segregation by the public transit system in Montgomery Alabama. The boycott began on December 5, 1955, a few days after Rosa Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her seat to a white person. The campaign ended on December 20, 1956, with the federal ruling of Browder v. Gayle which led to the United States Supreme Court decision in which Alabama and Montgomery laws that allowed segregated public transportation were deemed unconstitutional.
On August 28, 1963, Dr. King gave his “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of The Lincoln Memorial as part of the March on Washington. The March on Washington was to advocate for the civil rights of African Americans.
Due to his bravery and persistence, he was a part of the achievement of two of the Civil Rights Movement’s greatest achievements. In 1964, the ratification of the 24th Amendment abolished the poll tax and also the Civil Rights Act which prohibited racial discrimination in the workplace and schools. It also prohibited racial discrimination in all public facilities.
Martin Luther King, Jr. was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1964.
He believed in peaceful protest even when met with violence. His strength, fearlessness and determination to be a voice for securing civil rights for African Americans made him one of the most revered and beloved persons in American history.