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Gandhi Society for Human Rights, Inc.

The Gandhi Society for Human Rights was established by attorneys Harry Wachtel, Clarence Jones and Theodore Kheel to cover legal costs for the libel suit against four Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) ministers from a March 1960 ad in The New York Times. The Society was launched May 17, 1962, the anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education and the hundredth anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and of the death of Henry David Thoreau, author of On Civil Disobedience. The group’s mission included legal defense for civil rights cases, educational materials on nonviolence and voter registration, and financial support for civil rights projects. Dr. King was honorary president and donated $25,000 of his Nobel Prize award. King’s founding address is in this archive.

Associated Archive Content : 13 results

Address for the Formation of the Gandhi Society for Human Rights

This address was delivered by Dr. King at the Formation of the Gandhi Society for Human Rights event on May 17, 1962. Dr. King opens by discussing various anniversaries that coincide with the event and represent similar struggles for justice including the Supreme Court school desegregation ruling, the Emancipation Proclamation, and Henry David Thoreau's death.

Gandhi Society for Human Rights

The Gandhi Society for Human Rights lists the names of individuals whom they would like to serve on the organization's Board of Directors in which Dr. King serves as the Honorary President.

Gandhi Society for Human Rights Address by MLK

Dr. King speaks at a luncheon launching the Gandhi Society on May 17, 1962, citing the great significance of the day: the anniversary of the US Supreme Court decision declaring school segregation unconstitutional, the 100th anniversary of Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation and the centennial of the death of Henry David Thoreau, whose essay on civil disobedience influenced Gandhi. He announces that earlier that day he sent President Kennedy a document seeking an executive order proclaiming all forms of segregation to be a violation of the US Constitution.

Letter from Chuck Sumner Stone Jr. to MLK

Chuck Stone, Editor of the Washington Afro-American, instructs Dr. King to review their publication regarding the Gandhi Society for Human Rights. He wishes Dr. King luck in his endeavors and prays for many more men of his stature.

Letter from Clarence B. Jones to the Editor of New York Times

Clarence Jones writes the editor of the New York Times to comment on a statement made by James Reston. According to Mr. Jones the statement was factually inaccurate and partially paraphrased.

Letter from Clarence Jones to MLK

This letter announces that the Gandhi Society for Human Rights, Incorporated is sponsoring a benefit concert, for the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, at Carnegie Hal,l in New York City. Harry Belafonte, Frank Sinatra and Lena Horne are listed as some of the spotlight performers for this concert.

Letter from Kathy Boudin to MLK

Conference Coordinator Kathy Boudin invites Dr. King to participate in a three-day conference held by the students of Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges.

Letter from MLK to Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller

In this letter, Dr. King writes to New York Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller to express his gratitude for the Governor's letter and copy of his new book. Dr. King also refers to the possibility of Gov. Rockefeller's making "a large contribution to the Gandhi Society for Human Rights," and writes extensively about the Society and the effect such a contribution would have.

Letter from MLK to Nelson A. Rockefeller

Dr. King thanks Governor Nelson Rockefeller for taking the pulpit at Ebenezer Baptist Church for their Men?s Day Observance. He appreciates the Governor?s contribution of $25,000 to their tax exempt Society to match his own donation from the Nobel Peace Award.

Letter From Vice President Johnson to MLK

Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson wrote this note to Dr. King to respectfully decline his invitation to a luncheon and to serve on the board of directors of the Gandhi Society for Human Rights. He states he enjoyed their last meeting and is looking forward to the next one.

MLK Speech at the Americana Hotel

Dr. King compares the Maritimer Union's struggle for improved working conditions to the continuous fight for civil rights in the African American community.

Telegram from MLK to Chauncey Eskridge

Serving as the Honorary President, Dr. King invites Chauncey Eskridge to the Gandhi Society for Human Rights luncheon held in Washington, D.C., where he will be able to provide legal services to many southern Negroes in need.

Telegram from MLK to Derhanov Dinke

Dr. King informs Ambassador Derhanov Dinke that it is his pleasure to serve as Honorary President for the Gandhi Society for Human Rights. He invites Ambassador Dinke to attend a luncheon at the Sheraton Carlton Hotel in Washington, D. C.