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Since the 1800’s Telegrams have been responsible for relaying important and urgent information. Prior to telegrams, nearly all information was limited to traveling at the speed of a human or animal. The telegram freed communication from the constraints of space and time and truly affected how the world lived. In many ways telegrams can be thought of as an early form of Twitter. Similar to the restriction of 140 characters within a Tweet, writers of telegrams needed to be thoughtful in their message crafting and word selection. This was so both for economical reasons and the desire to speed the transmission of the telegram. For this reason, the messages within telegrams are often quite direct and strategic in their formation.
Harry Van Arsdale, President of the New York City Central Labor Council AFL-CIO, informs Dr. King, who is in the Fulton County Jail, that ten thousand unionists in New York voted to support Dr. King's fight for "decency and democracy." The organization contributes $1000 to aid Dr. King in his efforts.
Randolph and Heiskell request Dr. King's presence at an Urban Coalition Steering Committee Meeting in Washington.
Muhammed Speaks Newspaper contacts Martin Luther King, Sr. to confirm the presentation of a portrait of Dr. King, which is a gift of Muhammad Ali.
Rodney Clurman, of the World Food and Population Crisis Committee, outlines Dr. King's itinerary for a global trip that includes meeting with officials from Scotland, the Pope in Rome, and travelling to New Delhi.
Mr. Williams writes to the National Education Association of America requesting an immediate investigation take place on behalf of the Atlanta School System. He suggests that discriminatory practices are present.
Reverend Ralph D. Abernathy assures Dr. King that the nation extends their congratulations and prayer for his success. Reverend Abernathy asserts that as soldiers of freedom, they must "win this battle" for their country and that there "can be no retreat" in the movement.
Mrs. Lucas informs Mr. Vivian and Mr. Pitcher of Mrs. King's unavailability to speak at the YMCA in Chicago. A memorial service in honor of Dr. King is scheduled on the same date in Atlanta.
Dr. King was the recipient of this Western Union telegram from Rev. Loe Champion of the Milwaukee Operation Breadbasket, an economic project of the SCLC. Rev. Champion sent this telegram to show support for Dr. King's struggles in the South. The correspondence was sent two days after a march Dr. King led in Memphis, Tennessee in support of striking sanitation workers.
Andrew Young, Executive Assistant to Dr. King, writes the Swedish Ecumenical Council's Nils Sundholm, informing him that Dr. King can accept his invitation to host a worship service in Sweden in December as part of his trip to Europe.
Dr. King states his support for demonstrations by the Pennsylvania State Welfare Rights Organization.
Dr. King writes to Attorney General Robert Kennedy requesting an investigation in Williamston, NC to relieve the Negro community from violence and "unconstitutional police action."
Bishop Ljungberg Dean Zetterberg writes Dr. King on behalf of the Cathedral in Stockholm congratulating him on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize and invites him to attend a peace service.