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Nobel Peace Prize

Dr. King was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway on December 10, 1964. In presenting the award, the Nobel Committee Chairman stated that Dr. King was ‘‘the first person in the Western world to have shown us that a struggle can be waged without violence. He is the first to make the message of brotherly love a reality in the course of his struggle, and he has brought this message to all men, to all nations and races.’’ Dr. King accepted the award on behalf of the thousands of participants in The Civil Rights Movement, whom he described as a “mighty army of love.” King regarded the prize as a “commission” that demanded that he move beyond “national allegiances” to speak out for peace.

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Letter from Philip Watson to MLK

Monday, December 21, 1964
NORWAY, California (CA), Los Angeles, CA

Mr. Watson praises Dr. King for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize and describes the award as a "global testimony" to Dr. King's leadership.

Letter from Robert M. Gomsrud to MLK Regarding the Nobel Prize

Thursday, November 12, 1964
Minnesota (MN)

In this letter, Robert M. Gomsrud, President of the Minneapolis Central Labor Union Council, congratulates Dr. King for winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from Lenore Aikens to MLK

Thursday, December 31, 1964
CANADA

Lenore Aikens congratulates Dr. King for being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. She also asks how the Christian Citizenship Committee of United Church Women can be a part of the cause.

Letter from Rev. Camilo A. Boasso to MLK

Wednesday, December 30, 1964
New Jersey (NJ), ARGENTINA

In this document, a Catholic priest from Argentina writes to Dr. King and congratulates him for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. The priest also inquires about obtaining permission to translate into Spanish Dr. King's recent book "Why We Cant Wait." Requests like this increased significantly as Dr. King's prominence grew.

MLK Press Statement After Receiving Nobel Prize

Thursday, December 17, 1964
Oslo, Norway, London, England, Stockholm, Sweden, FRANCE, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Mississippi (MS), Florida (FL)

Dr. King issued this statement to the press upon return from receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in Norway. In addition to declaring how he plans to distribute his prize winnings, Dr. King discusses the progress of the Civil Rights Movement.

Letter from Prafulla Chandra Das to MLK

Monday, February 27, 1967
INDIA, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Mr. Das informs Dr. King that his book "Why We Can't Wait" has been translated for readers in India and printing is underway. Mr. Das asks Dr. King to send a message to UN Secretary General U Thant, the recent Nehru Peace Prize Award winner.

Letter from John Lewis to MLK

Thursday, October 15, 1964
GHANA

While in Ghana, Mr. John Lewis congratulates Dr. King for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. Mr. Lewis states, "the Nobel Peace Prize Committee had no choice but to select you for such an honor."

Letter from Fr. John McNamara to MLK

Monday, July 26, 1965
Louisiana (LA), Montgomery, AL, Selma, AL, St. Augustine, FL

Fr. McNamara, Catholic Chaplain at the Louisiana State Prison at Angola, writes Dr. King to extend congratulations on being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

The Nobel Couple

Thursday, December 10, 1964
Oslo, Norway, NORWAY

The cover photo of the December 1964 issue of The American Chronicle captures Dr. and Mrs. King after they discover he was named the winner of the year's Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from the Algemeen Handelsblad to MLK

Thursday, October 22, 1964
NETHERLANDS, Oslo, Norway, Birmingham, AL, NORWAY, Alabama (AL)

C. A. Steketee, chief editor of Dutch newspaper Algemeen Handelsblad, asks Dr. King to write an article about the American Civil Rights Movement.

Telegram from F. M. Horton to MLK

Washington, D.C., Atlanta, GA, Oslo, Norway, SWITZERLAND

F. M. Horton relays Norwegian ambassador True Davis' congratulations to Dr. King on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from George D. Kelsey to MLK

Saturday, October 31, 1964
New Jersey (NJ), SWEDEN

Dr. and Mrs. Kelsey applaud Dr. King on his nomination and receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize. Kelsey was Professor of Christian Ethics at Drew University.

MLK Accepts Nobel Peace Prize

Thursday, December 10, 1964
Oslo, Norway, NORWAY, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Alabama (AL), Birmingham, AL, Philadelphia, MS, Mississippi (MS), Montgomery, AL, South Africa

In his acceptance speech at the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony in Oslo, Norway, Dr. King dedicates his award to the nonviolent struggle necessary for overcoming the oppression and violence afflicting American Negroes.

Telegram From Edwin Berry to MLK

Wednesday, October 14, 1964
Chicago, IL, Illinois (IL)

Edwin Berry congratulates Dr. King on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Statement from MLK Returning from Receiving Nobel Prize

Friday, December 18, 1964
New York, NY

Upon returning from receiving the Nobel Peace Prize, Dr. King issued this statement on segregation, calling it "nothing but a new form of slavery."

Letter from Rabbi A. Aaron Segal to MLK

Tuesday, October 20, 1964
Chicago, IL, Illinois (IL)

Rabbi A. Aaron Segal of Springfield, Illinois writes Dr. King a poem honoring him for winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from Yousuf Karsh to MLK

Wednesday, October 21, 1964
CANADA, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Yousuf Karsh congratulates Dr. King on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize Award. In addition, Mr. Karsh informs Dr. King that his wife attended Antioch College at the same time as Mrs. King.

Letter from Phyllis E. Ames to MLK

Sunday, October 25, 1964
New York (NY), New York, NY

Phyllis E. Ames, on behalf of the National Association of Negro Business and Professional Women's Young Adults of the New York Club, congratulates Dr. King on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from Nils K. Stahle to Joan Daves

Wednesday, December 2, 1964
New York, NY, NORWAY, NETHERLANDS

The Director of the Nobel Foundation, Niles K. Stahle, explains the copyright of Dr. King's Nobel Lecture. Stahle states that the Lecture belongs to the Nobel Foundation and that measures will be taken to preserve its integrity.

Community Salute to MLK Nobel Peace Prize Winner

Thursday, December 17, 1964
New York (NY), New York, NY

This program outlines an event to celebrate Dr. King's receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize. The event takes place in New York City on December 17, 1964.

Nobel Lecture Itinerary

Oslo, Norway

This is an itinerary for the King family for the Nobel Peace Prize luncheon and lecture.

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.

Telegram from Dr. and Mrs. Jones to MLK

Wednesday, January 27, 1965
Chattanooga, TN, Atlanta, GA

Dr. and Mrs. Jones congratulate Dr. King on winning the Nobel Peace Prize. They send their regrets for not being able to attend the dinner to honor Dr. King's accomplishment.

Letter from Bruce A. King to MLK

Wednesday, October 28, 1964
AUSTRALIA, Washington, D.C.

Bruce King, Secretary of the Baptist Union of New South Wales, congratulates Dr. King for winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

Nobel Foundation Code of Statutes

Friday, June 29, 1900
Stockholm, Sweden

This 1900 document sets forth the purpose of the Nobel Foundation as worded in the will of Dr. Alfred Bernhard Nobel. According to these statutes, the Peace Award is for the person who has "best promoted the Fraternity of Nations and the Abolishment or Diminution of Standing Armies and the Formation and Increase of Peace-Congresses."

Letter from G. Campbell-Westlind to MLK

Wednesday, July 21, 1965
SWEDEN, Atlanta, GA, Stockholm, Sweden, New York (NY)

G. Campbell-Westlind, Acting Consul General of the Royal Consulate General of Sweden, informs Dr. King that Simon & Schuster has asked the Nobel Foundation in Stockholm for permission to print his Nobel Award Acceptance Speech. The letter requests Dr. King's comments on the proposal.

Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech

Thursday, December 10, 1964
Oslo, Norway, NORWAY, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Birmingham, AL, Alabama (AL), Philadelphia, MS, Mississippi (MS), Montgomery, AL, South Africa, South Africa

This version of Dr. King's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech is typed in all capitals, probably to make it easier to read from while delivering the speech.

Letter from Nils K. Stahle to MLK

Friday, November 27, 1964
SWEDEN, Stockholm, Sweden, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Georgia (GA), Atlanta, GA

Nils K. Stahle, Executive Director of the Nobel Foundation, invites Dr. King to visit the Nobel House in Stockholm while he is Sweden for a special ecumenical service.

Letter from A. K. Magugu to MLK

Tuesday, November 3, 1964
Atlanta, GA, KENYA, SWEDEN

The Office of Kenya National Celebrations congratulates Dr. King on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. In addition, the author encloses an invitation card in hopes that the Reverend may attend their Anniversary and Republic Day Celebrations.

Telegram from Walter Friedrich to MLK

Thursday, October 15, 1964
Berlin, Germany, GERMANY

Walter Friedrich, on behalf of the Peace Council of the German Democratic Republic, congratulates Dr. King for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.