Martin was born on January 15th, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia by the name of Michael Luther King, Jr. but changed it later to Martin.
Martin Graduated high school at 15 and received a B.A. degree from Morehouse College in Atlanta in 1948. He continued through seminary school and graduate studies until he received his Doctorate degree in 1955 at the young age of 25. He followed in his father’s footsteps to become a preacher by going to seminary school.
Martin met his wife Coretta Scott in Boston in 1953 and they later had two sons and two daughters.
He became pastor of a baptist church in Montgomery, Alabama in 1954 and was on the executive committee for the NAACP.
He was a major leader in the civil rights movement of the 1950s up until his death by assassination on April 4th, 1968.
Martin was an activist for civil rights and practiced non-violent protests and boycotts based on the ideas of Mahatma Gandhi. He led the Montgomery Bus Boycott that was a pivotal element of the civil rights movement.
During his protests, he was arrested over 20 times, beaten/assaulted at least 4 times, his house was bombed, but he still persevered and remained a leader for many African Americans during this time.
He traveled over 6 million miles and spoke over 2,500 times on the injustice African Americans were facing. He also wrote 5 books and numerous articles.
He was the leader of a massive protest in Birmingham, Alabama and the March to Washington where he delivered his infamous, “I Have a Dream” Speech on August 28th, 1963.
One of the biggest accomplishments Martin achieved outside of his Civil Rights success was that he was the youngest man to receive the Nobel Peace Prize at the age of 35 in 1964.
Martin made so many contributions to the history and future of America through his peaceful attempts to better the world through the Civil Rights Movement. He will forever be a figure of great respect and bravery in the eyes of many Americans. His contributions to us are the reasons why we celebrate his life and legacy through a National holiday.
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