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The Shaking Off of Burdens

Thursday, August 19, 1965

Professor Robert Birley delivers an annual memorial lecture on T.B. Davie at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. He notes that Mr. Davie served as vice-chancellor for the college and is most noted for his adherence to the principles of academic freedom and his stand against apartheid. Birley believes that this annual memorial is absolutely necessary to maintain Davie's inspirational legacy and continue the fight for academic freedom . He brings up the politics of slaves versus the free, drawing on the philosophies of Aristotle, Plato, and others to describe examples.

Farewell Statement by MLK

Monday, March 9, 1959

Dr. King writes a farewell statement to the people of India thanking them for their hospitality towards him, Mrs. King and Dr. Reddick. Dr. King pleas for world peace and asserts that India should take the lead in the call for universal disarmament.


Dr. King writes on the topic of religion, stating that the people living in the 18th century regarded religion as "the source of both political tyranny and social conflict."


Dr. King quotes Blaise Pascal's statement that there is no "medium point" as it relates to God.

Letter from Samuel Merrick to Robert Kennedy

U.S. Department of Labor representative Samuel V. Merrick reports the details of a Texas racial discrimination case to Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

Letter from David E. McGuire to All Members of First Westminster Presbyterian Church

Wednesday, April 10, 1968

The Session of the First Westminster Presbyterian Church, Yonkers, NY urges a "write-in" campaign to federal, state, or municipal legislators requesting action in the areas of open housing, equal employment opportunities and civil rights.

Letter from John A. McDermott Copied to Al Raby and MLK

Thursday, July 13, 1967

John A. McDermott, Executive Director of the Catholic Interracial Council, writes to Al Raby and Dr. King. Mr. McDermott describes the Council's involvement with the Chicago Freedom Movement. Mr. McDermott also expresses his appreciation for Mr. Raby and Dr. King's support in the fight for fair housing legislation in Chicago. McDermott goes on to describe the Movement struggle with the controversial Atomic Energy Commission project in Weston, Illinois.

The True Nature of Religion

Dr. King discusses the true nature of religion as both an inward and outward experience. The subject "He" is unidentified.

Cyprian of Carthage

Dr. King briefly outlines the life of Saint Cyprian of Carthage.

Handwritten Notes on Science and Religion

On this notecard, Dr. King outlines Brightman's views on Science and Religion.

Letter from MLK to Mrs. J. T. Brent

Friday, August 9, 1963

Dr. King responds to a letter from Mrs. Brent by explaining his views about love and its place in the Civil Rights Movement. He affirms that "it is through love and understanding that we approach the segregationist." He mentions that striking out in any act of violence is not condoned by leaders of the movement.

Letter from John H. Sengstacke to MLK

Monday, May 6, 1957

Mr. Sengstacke informs Dr. King that he will be presented with the Certificate of Award in honor of his selection to the 1956 Chicago Defender Honor Roll.

Letter from Debbie Winchester to MLK

Tuesday, February 9, 1965

10-year-old Debbie Winchester writes Dr. King requesting an autograph for her collection.

Definition of History

Dr. King explains a definition of history.

Letter from MLK to Robert D. Rasmussen

Monday, December 13, 1965

Dr. King writes Robert Rasmussen to express his regret for his inability to attend a Leadership Conference with the officials of the American Baptist Convention at the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia.

Letter from MLK to Lester Kendel Jackson

Wednesday, July 17, 1963

Dr. King sends a check to Dr. Jackson at St. Paul Baptist Church in Gary, Indiana, to aid with reconstruction of the church.

Albany Movement Statement

Sunday, July 1, 1962

This statement is written on behalf of people of faith who have come to support the Albany Movement. The ills experienced by the Negro community in Albany are rooted in racial separation, it says. The document requests a meeting with the City Commission to review their response to peaceful protest, clarification of the City’s position on an ICC ruling on segregated buses, and establishment of a bi-racial commission to make recommendations on desegregation.

Draft of Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech

This document is one draft of Dr. King's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech. Dr. King applauds the world for recognizing the American Civil Rights Movement and states that this award represents for him a "deepening commitment" to the philosophy of nonviolence.

Letter from Ms. Joan Daves to Ms. Dora McDonald Regarding Samples

Thursday, June 25, 1964

In this letter, Ms. Daves, Dr. King's literary agent, is asking Ms. McDonald if Dr. King wants to see copies of the promotion for his book's paperback edition.

Letter from Ben A. Todd to MLK

Friday, April 14, 1967

Ben A. Todd commends Dr. King for his recent stand against the United States' position in Vietnam, particularly because making such a statement may hurt the Civil Rights Movement.

Letter from Lawndale Business Men's Association

Monday, January 31, 1966

The president of the Lawndale Business Men's Association, Albert Weinberg, invites Dr. King to be the principal speaker for one of the association's events.

Class Notes

Dr. King references several biblical scriptures regarding topics of ethics, knowledge, man, sin and God.

SCLC Pamphlet- Why?

This brochure highlights the various forms of discrimination African Americans faced in Alabama, primarily the legal right to vote. Housing, unemployment, and police brutality are other key topics discussed. There is also a call to action on solutions for these problems.

SCLC Staff Meeting - Suggestions and Assignments

These notes from a SCLC staff meeting discuss a plan of action for the Chicago Campaign and the Soldier Field rally. The document covers an array of topics, such as advertising, speaking engagements and smaller rallies.

Letter from A.J. Hoffman to MLK

Thursday, April 27, 1967

In this letter, A.J. Hoffman offers a few words of admiration to Dr. King for his work for the "brotherhood of man."

Letter from MLK to Mr. and Mrs. Leon Margolis

Tuesday, December 3, 1963

Dr. King addresses a letter to Mr. and Mrs. Margolis to thank them for their son Jonathan's donation of one week's allowance to the SCLC. He explains what this and other donations enable the SCLC to accomplish.

Letter of Support from Mr. Watts to MLK

This letter from W. Douglass Watts, a student, extends his support and best wishes to Dr. King for his upcoming birthday.

The Christian Century: Civil Rights Bill Move to Fore

Wednesday, June 5, 1957

The Christian Century expounds on the advancement of the Civil Rights Bill in the United States. The article highlights Dr. King as a "prophetic Christian leader" and details the Negros who assembled for the March on Washington. The author lists numerous reasons correlating the positive affect of allowing Negro's the right to vote.

The Uniqueness of Jesus

Dr. King reflects on the virgin birth of Jesus and how this attribute was used to contextualize his "uniqueness." This reflection later appeared in his essay entitled "What Experiences of Christians Living in the Early Christian Century Led to the Christian Doctrines of the Divine Sonship of Jesus, the Virgin Birth, and the Bodily Resurrection" that he completed during his time at Crozer Theological Seminary.

Telegram from Reverend Daniel Speed to Reverend Andrew Young

Monday, August 2, 1965

A telegram from Rev. Speed informing Rev. Young of arrival information for the 1965 Southern Christian Leadership Conference Convention in Birmingham, Alabama.