Interesting Facts About Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


Dr. King was no doubt a very unique man who accomplished quite a bit in his 39 years. Following are some interesting facts you may or may not know about him:

  1. When he was born his name was Michael, not Martin. But when he was 5 years old his father renamed him after the Protestant Reformation Leader Martin Luther. And his dad, the senior King obviously changed his own name too.
  2. Dr. King was very intelligent, he skipped the 9th and 12th grades and enrolled in Morehouse College in Atlanta when he was just 15. And he received a doctorate at 26!
  3. His first national address in 1963 at the Lincoln Memorial in D.C. was not the “I Have A Dream” speech, instead it was a speech he gave in 1955 about voting rights. How ironic.
  4. Although he was a man of peace, Dr. King went to jail about 30 times, with many of the charges being exaggerated.
  5. Dr. King was almost assassinated a decade before his actual assassination. In 1958 a woman stabbed him with a letter opener while he was at his book signing in Harlem.
  6. The night before his assassination in 1968, Dr. King was giving a public speech that eerily foretold his death. In that speech he said, “Mine eyes have seen the coming of the glory of the Lord.”
  7. Members of Dr. King’s family didn’t believe James Earl Ray, the man who assassinated Dr. King acted alone. A jury in Memphis agreed there was a conspiracy but a U.S. Department of Justice investigation reported there was no evidence of a conspiracy.
  8. Dr. King’s mother was playing the organ in church when she was shot and killed just steps away from where her son preached non-violence at the iconic Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.
  9. Dr. King, along with Abraham Lincoln and George Washington are the only Americans to have their birthdays observed as a national holiday.

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