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"Speeches"

MLK's Statement Regarding Civil Rights Activists' Murders

Friday, December 11, 1964
Mississippi (MS)

This statement by Dr. King was written regarding the lynching and murders of three civil rights activists: James Cheyney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner. When Mississippi officials refused to pursue the prosecution of those involved, national outrage prompted the ensuing major federal intervention.

Vision of a World Made New

Thursday, September 9, 1954
ISRAEL, INDIA, UNITED KINGDOM, FRANCE, NETHERLANDS

This is a draft of "The Vision of a World Made New," a speech that Dr. King delivered during the 1954 Women's Auxiliary Convention. President Nannie H. Burroughs invited Dr. King to address the group's annual meeting where he condemned imperialism, colonialism, and segregation.

MLK's Statement at Prayer Rally in Albany, Georgia

Wednesday, August 15, 1962
Albany, GA

After the bombing of a local church, Dr. King delivered this statement attempting to both criticize the actions of the perpetrators and provide a sense of calm to Albany demonstrators.

MLK's Statement in Regards to Adlai Stevenson

Wednesday, July 14, 1965

Dr. King makes a statement following the death of Adlai Stevenson.

Pathos and Hope

Mississippi (MS), Nashville, TN

Dr. King writes about his trip to the Mississippi Delta. He reflects on the resolve and spirit of the people, who despite all odds are fighting for social justice and change.

MLK's Speech Notes

FORMER SOVIET UNION / USSR

In these speech notes, Dr. King references the plight of the Jewish community in the Soviet Union and the silent betrayal of onlookers. John Donne is quoted in his famous excerpt, "No man is an island entire of itself, every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main."

Address to Members of the Hungry Club

Wednesday, December 15, 1965
Atlanta, GA, Georgia (GA), Alabama (AL), Tuskegee, AL, Philadelphia, PA, Pennsylvania (PA), Birmingham, AL, Washington, D.C., ZIMBABWE, SOUTH AFRICA, Selma, AL, Montgomery, AL, Mississippi (MS)

Dr. King discusses the Negro's dilemma in an address to the members of the Hungry Club in Atlanta, Georgia. He argues that some of the challenges facing the Negro are: taking advantage of all the new federal programs, encouraging youth to go into higher education, and developing massive action programs to rid unjust systems. Dr. King also states three myths the Negro should explore: the myth of time, the myth of "exaggerated progress," and the myth of "total reliance on the boothstrap philosophy."

March on Washington Address by Eugene Carson Blake

Wednesday, August 28, 1963
Washington, D.C., Illinois (IL), Virginia (VA)

Rev Dr. Eugene Carson Blake, Vice Chairman of the Commission on Religion and Race of the National Council of Churches, addresses the March on Washington. He states that if all the clergy and church members he represents and all of the Roman Catholics and Jews in America were marching for jobs and freedom for Negroes, the battle for civil rights would be won. Despite the pronouncements of the religious community, the churches and society are still segregated. “Late, late we come,” he says, and in a repentant and reconciling spirit.

MLK's Statement on Church Destruction in Leesburg, Georgia

Thursday, August 16, 1962
Georgia (GA)

In this statement following the destruction of a church in Leesburg, Georgia, Dr. King argues that it was the action of somebody with the "strange illusion" that it would somehow stop African-Americans from seeking freedom and justice.

MLK's Speech on Civil Rights and Vietnam

Wednesday, April 5, 1967
VIETNAM, New York (NY)

Dr. King speaks about his role as a leader of the Civil Rights Movement and his position on the Vietnam War.

Press Statement Regarding Crusade for Citizenship

Saturday, October 5, 1957
Memphis, TN, Washington, D.C.

Dr. King delivers a statement surrounding the civil rights struggle of the Negro community and the appeals for justice to public officials. He asserts that in regards to the Prayer Pilgrimage, there cannot be a citizen whom does not have the right to vote. With the initiation of the Crusade for Citizenship, the citizenship of the Negro has the opportunity to be a reality.

Remarks at the Lincoln Memorial

Wednesday, August 28, 1963
Washington, D.C., UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Mathew Ahmann, Executive Director of the National Catholic Conference for Interracial Justice, asserts that the citizens of the US have permitted evil and racial discrimination for too long. He joins forces with those against inequality with hopes for a better lifestyle for all Americans regardless of the color of their skin.

Statement on CORE Supportive Action Against Variety Chain Store Discrimination in the South

Sunday, February 12, 1961
Kentucky (KY), South Carolina (SC), Atlanta, GA, New York, NY

The Congress of Racial Equality issues a statement regarding economic boycotts of chain stores in the North that have segregated stores in the South. These boycotts are in support of desegregation efforts in the South.

Revolution and Redemption

Sunday, August 16, 1964
Alabama (AL), Birmingham, AL, Montgomery, AL, NETHERLANDS

This document contains the address, "Revolution and Redemption," given by Dr. King in Amsterdam. Dr. King discusses the concerns of the "Gospel of Jesus Christ." He states there are two aspects of the world that must never be forgotten: "this is God's world," and that Jesus Christ gave his life for redemption.

Nobel Peace Prize Lecture

Friday, December 11, 1964
Oslo, Norway, New York (NY), New York, NY, London, England, Atlanta, GA, Georgia (GA)

This is a handwritten draft of the Nobel lecture. Dr. King delivered this lecture at the University of Oslo on December 11, 1964, the day after receiving the Peace Prize. Aware of the prestigious nature of the award and the global recognition it brought to the nonviolent struggle for racial justice in the US, King worked nearly a month on his address. He goes beyond his dream for America and articulates a vision of a World House in which a family of different races, religions, ideas, cultures and interests must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.

Senator Edward Kennedy's Address to SCLC

Monday, August 8, 1966
Mississippi (MS), Massachusetts (MA), Montgomery, AL, New York (NY), Cleveland, OH, Chicago, IL

Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-MA) addresses the 1966 SCLC Annual Convention, stating that the sit-ins, freedom rides and Montgomery bus boycott created a movement that brought about the most important change of the last 20 years. He says that while the caste system in politics is over, the life of the average Negro hasn’t changed much. Society is becoming divided rich and poor, black and white, and a massive commitment of national resources must be made to upgrade Negro life in America.

Epitaph for a First Lady: Eleanor Roosevelt

New York (NY), Birmingham, AL, Boston, MA, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Massachusetts (MA), Alabama (AL)

Upon the death of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, Dr. King wrote this epitaph, calling her "a symbol of world citizenship." In addition, Dr. King commends Mrs. Roosevelt for her commitment to humanity.

Transcripts of Speeches And Statements Along The Meridith March

Thursday, June 16, 1966
Chicago, IL, Mississippi (MS), Alabama (AL)

Dr. King discusses the recent violent challenge faced by the Negro and the SCLC in which they have experienced a "threat of murder." This issue has motivated Dr. King to continuously press for social change and maintain the responsibilities in Mississippi.

Speech at NAACP World March Toward Human Rights Luncheon

Thursday, May 28, 1964
GREECE, GERMANY, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, KENYA

Dr. King links the quest for individual civil rights to the global struggle for human rights and states that the nation that will achieve preeminence in the world is the one that both guarantees human rights for all and provides for basic needs.

Proposed Nobel Speech

SWEDEN

This is a draft for an optional version of Dr. King's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech. He notes the importance of viewing the world as a family and with such perception, understands race issues as an international concern. King also speaks of Sir Alfred Bernhard Nobel, the originator of the Nobel Peace Prize. He accepts the award on behalf of those who came before him and those who continue to fight for freedom.

Hungry Club Speech

Wednesday, May 10, 1967
Atlanta, GA, Georgia (GA)

Dr. King speaks on "America's Chief Moral Dilemma." He contends that the dilemma in the world is the result of three major evils: racism, poverty, and war. Dr. King encourages the audience to work toward making America a moral example for the rest of the world.

MLK Remarks on Negro Press Week

Monday, February 10, 1958
FORMER SOVIET UNION / USSR, ALGERIA

In this transcribed radio address, Dr. King describes how future generations will remember the 20th century as a time where righteous people fought for social, economic, and political freedom. Dr. King also states that the African-American fight for true citizenship is not only a part of American heritage, but also the story of people everywhere who struggle for dignity and freedom. Dr. King made this radio address for Negro Press week a the request of Louisville Defender Editor and National Newspaper Publishers Association board member Frank Stanley.

MLK Statement Before the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders

Monday, October 23, 1967
Illinois (IL), Chicago, IL, Washington, D.C., VIETNAM, INDIA, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, North Carolina (NC)

Dr. King makes a public statement before the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorder. He addresses five causes of the recent riots: hite backlash, unemployment, discriminatory practices, war, and features peculiar to big cities.

MLK Addresses the District 65 AFL-CIO

Saturday, September 8, 1962
Florida (FL), New York (NY), Albany, GA, GERMANY, Arkansas (AR), Little Rock, AR, Jackson, MS, Montgomery, AL, ITALY, FRANCE, JAPAN

This is an address given by Dr. King to District 65 of the National AFL-CIO Convention in Miami, Beach. Dr. King recognizes their contribution to the Southern Christen Leadership Conference.

Reverend Ralph D. Abernathy's Statement Following MLK's Assasination

Sunday, April 7, 1968
Memphis, TN, Washington, D.C., Tennessee (TN)

Rev. Abernathy acknowledges the deep pain and anger those in SCLC feel at the senseless taking of Dr. King’s life. They pledge that his work and commitment to nonviolence will continue. They are as much against violence, says Abernathy, as they are against racial and economic injustice. He announces that Mrs. King will join him in leading a march in Memphis in support of the sanitation workers and that the Poor People’s Campaign will proceed. He calls upon Congress to respond to the major loss represented by Dr.

Press Statement by MLK About President Johnson's Address on Selma

Tuesday, March 16, 1965
Selma, AL, Alabama (AL)

Dr. King lauds President Johnson's speech to a joint session of Congress, which he describes as an eloquent, unequivocal and passionate plea for human rights. This statement and the President's address occurred during the height of the Selma voting rights campaign.

I've Been to the Mountaintop

Wednesday, April 3, 1968
Memphis, TN, Birmingham, AL

Dr. King gave this address at the Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee the night before he was assassinated. He called for nonviolent protest and a boycott of Memphis area businesses in support of the Memphis Sanitation Workers strike. Conveying a sense of foreboding, he not only recounted a near-death experience when he was stabbed near the heart, but also spoke of the possibility of his own demise at the hands of those who opposed him.

Remarks by MLK at the Freedom House Annual Dinner

Tuesday, November 26, 1963
Birmingham, AL, Alabama (AL), Mississippi (MS), Texas (TX)

Dr. King expresses his appreciation for being honored by Freedom House. He also pays tribute to the life and work of John F. Kennedy while encourging others to honor his memory through their dedication to civil rights.

Draft of MLK Response to the Establishment of a Bi-Racial Commission in Saint Augustine, Florida

Florida (FL), St. Augustine, FL

This is a draft of a response for Dr. King to make regarding the establishment of a bi-racial commission in St. Augustine, Florida to address the issues of equality, human dignity and racial justice.