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Mays, Benjamin E. (Benjamin Elijah)

b. 1894 - d. 1984

Benjamin Elijah Mays, born in rural South Carolina, was a mentor of Dr. King from King’s student days at Morehouse College to his death. Mays graduated from Bates College in Maine and obtained master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Chicago. He was appointed dean of the School of Religion at Howard University in 1934. In 1940, he became president of Morehouse College, where he remained for 27 years. At Morehouse, Mays convened Tuesday morning Chapel each week to challenge and inspire the students. King traces aspects of his ministerial and spiritual formation to Dr. Mays. A consummate scholar and social critic, Mays offered the benediction at the close of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. He also delivered a eulogy of King in Atlanta. Following his tenure at Morehouse, Mays served as president of the Atlanta Board of Education from 1970 to 1981.

Associated Archive Content : 76 results

Letter from Dr. Benjamin E. Mays to MLK

In this letter, President of Morehouse College, Benjamin E. Mays writes Dr. King with an enclosed check to assist with the work of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

Letter from Dr. Benjamin E. Mays to MLK

In this letter to Dr. King, Benjamin E. Mays, president of Morehouse College informs Dr. King about the meeting with Robert Troutman on matters that involve input from President Kennedy.

Letter from Dr. Benjamin E. Mays to MLK

Dr. Benjamin E. Mays writes to Dr. King, thanking him for his financial pledge to the college and asking him to join the Morehouse men who have either paid out their pledges or whose pledges are up to date. This letter includes Dora McDonald's holograph shorthand in red ink.

Letter from Dr. Benjamin E.Mays to William J. Trent, Jr.

In this letter, Benjamin E. Mays is notifying William Trent that Dr. King will meet with John D. Rockefellar, III at his office on Feburary 6. What the meeting is about is not specified in the letter.

Letter from Harry H. Wachtel to Charles W. Englehard

Harry Wachtel writes Charles Englehard thanking him for his payment of $5,000 toward a $15,000 pledge to The American Foundation On Nonviolence. He states that his initial contribution was extremely helpful in registering African Americans in Mississippi and other southern states.

Letter from L. D. Reddick to Colleagues

L. D. Reddick's colleagues received this letter pertaining to the business of Dr. King's papers and where they should be housed.

Letter from L. K. Jackson to MLK

Reverend L. K. Jackson commends Dr. King on his ongoing efforts in the Civil Rights Movement.

Letter from Lynne Ansorge to MLK

Lynne Ansorge invites Dr. King to Lawrence College. He also tells Dr. King about the issues that have been occurring in their community.

Letter from MLK to Benjamin E. Mays

In this letter to Dr. Mays, Dr. King mentions a letter of recommendation written on the behalf of William Herbert Gray Jr.

Letter from MLK to Benjamin E. Mays

Dr. King sends Dr. Mays a check for $200 and informs him that he will not be able to attend the Founders' Day celebration.

Letter from MLK to Benjamin E. Mays regarding Contribution to Morehouse College

In this letter, Dr. King pledges a donation in the amount of $225 to Morehouse College President, Dr. Benjamin E. Mays, for dormitory renovations.

Letter from MLK to John L. Tilley

Dr. King is requesting the use of Morehouse College for a three-day conference of southern leaders. The conference will be sponsored by the SCLC and the Fellowship of Reconciliation. Target issues include nonviolence and social action.

Letter from Morehouse College President to MLK

Morehouse College President Dr. Benjamin E. Mays appeals to Dr. King to contribute to the school on the occasion of the college?s 100th anniversary.

Letter from Mr. Benjamin E. Mays to MLK

Benjamin Mays, President of Morehouse College, informs Dr. King he has reviewed the document sent to President Kennedy on 5/17/62.

Letter from Phale D. Hale to MLK

Phale D. Hale, Pastor of Union Grove Baptist Church, sends $100.00 in support of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Pastor Hale praises Dr. King's efforts in the Civil Rights Movement and offers to organize a massive fund-raising event in Columbus, Ohio if Dr. King will attend.

Letter from R. D. Earnhardt to Ralph David Abernathy

R.D. Earnhardt requests a meeting with Rev. Abernathy to discuss Dr. King's death and the plan to proceed with the "Poor People's March on Washington, DC.

Letter from Rev. Hazel E. Foster to MLK

Reverend Hazel Foster writes to Dr. King in support of his continuous struggle. He talks about memorizing the Sermon on the Mount and the importance to him and leaders like Gandhi. He offers words of encouragement and prays that Dr. King may find peace during these hard times.

Letter from Telly H. Miller to MLK

Telly H. Miller, a graduate of the Morehouse School of Religion of the Interdenominational Theological Center and pastor in a West Virginia church, invites Dr. King to their Centennial. Pastor Miller requests that Dr. King deliver the Centennial sermon and explains that his coming will be a "great help" to the community.

Letter From Walter R. McCall to MLK

Morehouse School of Religion Director Walter McCall asks Dr. King for a contribution to purchase a piano that will be presented to Morehouse School of Religion.

Letter from Wendell P. Whalum to Fellow Morehouse Alumnus

Wendell P. Whalum informs the alumni of Morehouse College about the events that will place during inaugural week.

Letter from William S. Minor to MLK

William Minor, the Director of The Foundation for Creative Philosophy, invites Dr. King to speak at The Society for Creative Ethics meeting in New York.

Letter from Wyatt Tee Walker to Benjamin E. Mays

Wyatt Tee Walker informs Benjamin E. Mays that an advance copy of Dr. King's book, "Why We Can't Wait," is being sent in appreciation of Dr. Mays' support.

Letter of Thanks from Benjamin E. Mays to MLK

Dr. Benjamin E. Mays, president of Morehouse College, expresses appreciation to Dr. King for financial support to the college.

Letter to Dr. Benjamin Mays Regarding a Contribution

In this letter, Dr. King gives Dr. Mays, president of Morehouse College, a contribution for the great work he has done for Morehouse and humanity.

Letter to Dr. Mays Regarding United Negro College Fund

Dr. King's secretary sends a check for $150 to Morehouse College President Benjamin E. Mays for the United Negro College Fund. The letter states that Dr. King's pledge will total $700 with the balance paid on or before February 18, 1967.

Letter to Men of Morehouse from Morehouse President Benjamin E. Mays

Morehouse President Benjamin E. Mays discusses the events during Centennial Founders Week at Morehouse College for those who were not in attendance. He also informs the Men of Morehouse of the upcoming commencement ceremony.

March on Washington Lincoln Memorial Program

This document outlines the program held at the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

MLK Speech at Nobel Peace Prize Recognition Dinner

Dr. King delivers this address after returning from his trip to Oslo, Norway. A recognition dinner is held in his hometown of Atlanta, Georgia as an honor for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. King thanks supporters, family, and friends, however, accepts the award on behalf of the many people struggling for justice and civil rights. He states that oppressed people can only stay oppressed for so long because "the yearning for freedom eventually manifests itself."

Morehouse Board of Trustees Meeting

The Secretary of Morehouse College Board of Trustees, J. H. Wheeler, inquires if Dr. King will be in attendance for the annual meeting.

Next Steps In The South

The Southern Regional Council publishes a pamphlet that addresses the landmark Brown vs. Board of Education Supreme Court Case and what its implications mean for society. The pamphlet goes on to answer several questions concerning school integration and gives background information on the case and the issues of segregation.

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