Themes

The Archive

Digital Archive brought to you
by JPMorgan Chase & Co.

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.

Explore another theme

Nobel Prize Atlanta Dinner Address Outline

Wednesday, January 27, 1965

Dr. King outlines his address for the January 27, 1965 recognition dinner honoring him for the Nobel Peace Prize. He intends to speak on topics of racial justice, nonviolence and poverty, while discussing the strides made by the movement and the uphill battles still to be faced. Over 1000 people attended the program, the first integrated dinner in Atlanta's history.

City's Leaders Plan Dinner for MLK

Wednesday, January 6, 1965

This article announces a banquet to be held to honor Dr. King for his Nobel Peace Prize award. The banquet is hosted by various leaders in the City of Atlanta.

Letter from MLK's Secretary to Ralph and Juanita Abernathy

Wednesday, November 18, 1964

Dr. King's secretary sends Ralph and Juanita Abernathy information regarding the trip to Oslo, Norway for the month of December, 1964.

Letter from Dr. Alvaro Palmeira to MLK

Monday, November 16, 1964

Dr. Palmeira, Grand Master of the Grande Orient of Brazil, offers his congratulations to Dr. King for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from Clark Foreman to MLK

Wednesday, October 21, 1964

Clark Foreman, Director of the Emergency Civil Liberties Committee, congratulates Dr. King on winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Mr. Foreman also asks Dr. King to send a message of congratulations to Dr. James A. Dombrowski, who will receive the Tom Paine Award at the 1964 Bill of Rights Dinner. Dombrowski, a Methodist minister, was co-founder of the Highlander Folk School in Tennessee.

Letter from MLK to SNCC's John Lewis Regarding the Nobel Peace Prize

Tuesday, November 3, 1964

Dr. King extends gratitude to John Lewis, Chairman of SNCC, for his encouraging letter upon the announcement of Dr. King being chosen to receive the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize. Dr. King states he does not accept this award as a tribute to himself, but as a tribute to the entire Civil Rights Movement. Lewis was regarded as a key SNCC leader and became the US Representative for Georgia's 5th congressional district in 1987.

Letter from Bruce A. King to MLK

Wednesday, October 28, 1964

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

SCLC Virginia Program with MLK

Friday, July 2, 1965

This is the program for SCLC's Virginia State Unit's observance of Nobel Peace Prize Day at Virginia State College, with Dr. King as guest speaker.

Letter from Raphael Gould to Dora McDonald Re Thich Nhat Hanh

Friday, January 27, 1967

Raphael Gould, of The Fellowship of Reconciliation, writes to Miss McDonald requesting a letter from Dr. King nominating Thich Nhat Hanh for the Nobel Peace Prize. Mr. Gould calls attention to the approaching deadline and the extensive documentation that must accompany the letter.

Richard Millard Congratulates MLK

Wednesday, October 28, 1964

Richard Millard, the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Boston University, congratulates Dr. King for winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

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.

Telegram from Konrad Bloch to MLK

Thursday, October 15, 1964

Konrad Bloch congratulates Dr. King and says he will see him in Stockholm.

Letter from Roland de Corneille to MLK

Tuesday, November 3, 1964

Rev. Roland de Corneille of the Martin Luther King Fund of Toronto congratulates Dr. King for being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from the Algemeen Handelsblad to MLK

Thursday, October 22, 1964

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

Letter from Peggy Duff to MLK

Thursday, May 4, 1967

Peggy Duff invites Dr. King to speak in Copenhagen on behalf of the Danish Peace Movement.

Letter from Sister M. Angelice to MLK

Sunday, October 25, 1964

Sister Angelice, Acting President of Ursiline College in Louisville, congratulates Dr. King on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize and expresses admiration for his civil rights efforts.

Congratulatory Letter from YWCA to MLK

Tuesday, October 20, 1964

The YWCA congratulates Dr. King for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from George D. Kelsey to MLK

Saturday, October 31, 1964

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.

Letter from Sam Massell Jr. to MLK

Thursday, November 19, 1964

Sam Massell Jr., President of the City of Atlanta Board of Aldermen, congratulates Dr. King on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Nobel Peace Prize Dinner Program

Monday, January 27, 1964

The citizens of Atlanta held a recognition dinner on January 27, 1965 to honor Dr. King for his Nobel Peace Prize. Tributes were offered by Mayor Ivan Allen, Jr., AME Bishop Ernest Hickman, Rev. Edward Driscoll of the Georgia Council of Churches, State Senator Leroy Johnson, and Roman Catholic Archbishop Paul Hallinan. Dr. King gave the address.

Letter from Arthur Welch and J.A. Middleton to MLK

Thursday, December 3, 1964

The congregation of Allen Temple A.M.E. Church in Atlanta writes Dr. King to congratulate him for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

Letter from Dr. Herman Klugman

Thursday, October 15, 1964

Dr. Herman Klugman, Dr. King's German-language tutor at Boston University, offers his congratulations on the coveted Nobel Peace Prize. He states that, as a Jew whose people experienced Nazi persecution, he has watched the "Gleichberechtigung" (equal rights) struggle with deep emotion.

Letter from Herbert G. Cave to MLK

Tuesday, January 5, 1965

Director Dr. Herbert G. Cave represents the Department of Anesthesiology at the Harlem Hospital Center in congratulating Dr. King for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. Seven years earlier, in 1958, Dr. King had been a surgical patient of the hospital due to being stabbed with a letter opener while on a book tour.

MLK Press Statement After Receiving Nobel Prize

Thursday, December 17, 1964

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 Shelia Mills to MLK

Sunday, December 13, 1964

Shelia Mills, a 7th grade student, commends Dr. King for his efforts within the nonviolence movement and for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Letter from Rabbi A. Aaron Segal to MLK

Tuesday, October 20, 1964

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

Letter from Charles Merrill to MLK

Thursday, September 28, 1967

Mr. Charles Merrill, Headmaster of the Commonwealth School in Boston, MA, requests that Dr. King support Mr. Danilo Dolci's candidacy for the Nobel Peace Prize that year

Letter from Simon Oberg to MLK

Friday, October 16, 1964

Simon Oberg invites Dr. King to come to Sweden during his trip to Europe for the Nobel Peace Prize Reception.

Telegram from F. M. Horton to MLK

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

Nobel Peace Prize Lecture

Friday, December 11, 1964

On December 11, 1964, Dr. King delivered his Nobel lecture at the University of Oslo. Aware of the prestigious nature of the award and the global recognition for the nonviolent struggle to eradicate racial injustice in the U.S., King worked nearly a month on this address. He went far beyond his dream for America and articulated his vision of a World House in which a family of different races, religions, ideas, cultures and interests must learn to live together as brothers and sisters or perish together as fools. For citations, go to Dr. King's lecture at nobleprize.org.