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Dr. King the Scholar

As a pastor and theologian, Dr. King modeled the life of a public intellectual. He was a consummate scholar, speaker and writer. Growing up the son and grandson of Baptist ministers, Dr. King was surrounded by opportunities for informal learning. In his life and studies, he had exposure to some of the nation’s brightest minds. He excelled in his days as a student at Morehouse College, Crozer Theological Seminary and Boston University. Dr. King knew the liberating power of education and this undoubtedly informed his efforts to make that power available to all children in America. This theme provides a selection of documents related to Dr. King’s life as a student and scholar.

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Error

This set of note cards written by Dr. King explores the causation of error. King quotes Alfred North Whitehead's "The Concept of Nature" noting several reasons as to the rise of error.

Syllabus in Preaching and Worship

This syllabus for the course "Preaching and Worship" details the topics to be covered during the course. The following key topics are included: The Preaching Ministry of the Church, The Preparation of the Sermon, and Worship.

Abelard on Universals and theMethod of Descartes

Dr. King references Peter Abelard, medieval French philosopher and theologian. He discerns that universals cannot be things or words. Rather, the universal is a concept. King maintains that this quandary is relevant to "Schoolmen" and particularly the dogma of the Church. He continues by also noting philosopher Rene Descartes, and that "he was at fault in overemphasizing mathematical method."

Dr. King's Schedule October 1967

San Francisco, CA, Los Angeles, CA, Texas (TX), Chicago, IL, Cleveland, OH, Washington, D.C., New Jersey (NJ), Philadelphia, PA, Boston, MA, Iowa (IA)

This schedule lists Dr. King's travel itinerary and speaking engagements, October 1967.

Mars Lecture Series

Tuesday, April 15, 1958
Illinois (IL), Montgomery, AL

This 1958 program features Dr. King as guest lecturer for the Mars Lectures at Northwestern University.

SCLC Newsletter: July 1963

Alabama (AL), Birmingham, AL, SOUTH AFRICA, Johannesburg, South Africa, New York (NY), Michigan (MI), Chicago, IL, Illinois (IL), Washington, D.C., Nashville, TN, Tennessee (TN), Georgia (GA), North Carolina (NC), Virginia (VA), Atlanta, GA

This SCLC newsletter features numerous articles written by members of the SCLC regarding Birmingham, Alabama. Also featured is a graphic story of the crisis in Birmingham.

Commencement Ceremony at Boston University

This photograph shows a commencement ceremony at Boston University in June of 1959.

Letter from Geraldine Ford to MLK

Saturday, December 28, 1968

The president of the Oxford Union Society invites Dr. King to a debate that will possibly be televised by the British Broadcasting Corporation. The debate will discuss topics associated with the international race issue, injustice, discrimination and more. The president addresses the concerns surrounding the Black Power Movement in the United States and in Britain.

The Pastor and His Reference Library

Pennsylvania (PA)

Here is "The Pastor and His Reference Library" by Edward C. Starr. Starr served as librarian at Bucknell. Dr. King more than likely used this resource to conduct research and organize citations while attending Crozer Theological Seminary in Upland, PA.

The Great Empire During the Sojourn In Egypt

EGYPT, SYRIA, PALESTINIAN TERRITORY, OCCUPIED

Dr. King contemplates the history of Egypt, noting that little is known about the time the Israelites spent there. At some point "Asiatic peoples," the Hyksos, invade Egypt and built a powerful empire known as the area of Syria and Palestine. Using horse and chariot technology the Hyksos conquered the land. Eventually, native rulers of Thebes in upper Egypt drove out the Hyksos.

Blue Spiral Notebook

North Carolina (NC)

Contained in this notebook is a draft of Dr. King's statement to Judge James E. Webb following his arrest during the Rich's Magnolia Tea Room Sit-In. There is also an outline of a letter to female students who were arrested during the sit-in. On other pages a child practices handwriting.

Letter from Morehouse College President to MLK

Saturday, May 7, 1966
Atlanta, GA

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.

MLK's Notes On the Influence of Radio

Dr. King records information regarding religious broadcasting. He list percentages of public influence, prize giveaways and other relevant historical details.

Citation for MLK

Sunday, June 4, 1961
Connecticut (CT)

This document contains the passage read on the occasion of the conferral of an honorary doctoral degree from University of Bridgeport to Dr. King.

Racism in the United States

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Alabama (AL), Birmingham, AL, Mississippi (MS), New York (NY), Detroit, MI, Michigan (MI), Atlanta, GA, Georgia (GA), North Carolina (NC), Albany, GA

Dr. King discusses the issues of racism, Jim Crow and nonviolence in this edition of Current. He further explains that, without the tactic of nonviolence, Negroes can become hostile and bitter. Throughout this issue several other writers are featured including Leslie W. Dunbar, Langston Hughes and Fay Bennett.

Foreword of "The Power of Nonviolence"

Thursday, January 1, 1959
New York (NY), DENMARK, NORWAY, FRANCE, NETHERLANDS, GERMANY, SOUTH AFRICA, GHANA, Montgomery, AL, INDIA

This is a copy of a foreword written by Dr. King to Richard Gregg's "The Power of Nonviolence."

God

Dr. King cites the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy regarding the topic of monotheism.

The Philosophy of Life Undergirding Christianity and The Christian Ministry

In this essay fragment from his Crozer Seminary days, Dr. King writes that Christianity is a value philosophy whose values are embodied in the life of Christ. He begins to spell out what those values are. The first, King states, is the value of the world as something positive and life-affirming, in contrast to the negative view of the world of the ascetics and religions of India. The second value is that of persons, who have supreme worth. People must be used as ends, never as means to ends, although there have been periods in history where Christianity has fallen short.

Statements on Jobs and Poverty

Friday, November 6, 1964
New York (NY), New York, NY, Mississippi (MS), UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Pennsylvania (PA)

Dr. King explains the relationship between violence and the lack of employment among young people. Dr. King also speaks of the Thanksgiving Fast for Freedom and its efforts to end poverty and hunger.

Friends Journal: A Quaker Weekly

Saturday, July 26, 1958
New Jersey (NJ), Philadelphia, PA, CANADA, MEXICO, London, England, Berlin, Germany, Indiana (IN), JAPAN, LEBANON, NORWAY, Geneva, Switzerland, TURKEY, Pittsburgh, PA, Richmond, VA, California (CA), Montgomery, AL, INDIA

Dr. King's article, "Nonviolence and Racial Justice" is included in this edition of the Friends Journal. Dr. King's entry discusses the various implications of race relations in America and the beneficial elements of nonviolence.

Thoughts on Nobel Prize

Birmingham, AL, New York (NY), California (CA), Florida (FL), Philadelphia, PA, Mississippi (MS), Alabama (AL)

This draft of Dr. King's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech lends recognition to the nonviolent practices of those engaged in the fight for equality and civil rights.

Temple Sholom Concert Forum Committee Announces MLK as Guest Lecturer

Chicago, IL, Illinois (IL)

Chicago's Temple Sholom encourages interested parties to reserve their tickets soon, given the widespread enthusiasm for Dr. King's upcoming speaking engagement.

Press Conference on Chicago Movement

Wednesday, July 7, 1965
Chicago, IL, Illinois (IL), UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Dr. King shares his acceptance of the invitation to spend some time in Chicago. During his time in Chicago, Dr. King and other SCLC leaders plan to assist local civil rights organizations in organizing rallies throughout the city.

Promotional Article for Why We Can't Wait

Birmingham, AL

This Harper released publication contains a preview of the religious books to be published in the summer and fall of 1964. Dr. King's "Why We Can't Wait" is featured with the byline "The 'Man of the Year' writes the 'Book of the Year'."

Invitation from Manitoba New Democratic Party

Thursday, August 19, 1965
CANADA

B. Swailes, Provincial Secretary of the Manitoba New Democratic Party, extends a speaking invitation to Dr. King to discuss human rights.

The Weaknesses of Liberal Theology

In this paper from his Crozer Seminary days, Dr. King discusses his thoughts regarding liberal theology, which he thinks is the most logical theology that exists. There are weaknesses, however, one being that it often loses itself in higher criticism.

Letter from Sankey Blanton to MLK

Wednesday, October 3, 1951
Pennsylvania (PA), Boston, MA, Massachusetts (MA), Chester, PA

Sankey Blanton, of Crozer Theological Seminary, sends Martin Luther King, Jr. half of his fellowship grant for the 1951-1952 academic year. A second check will be sent when they have received his first semester grades and registration for the second semester.

Outline Regarding Man

Dr. King's outline regarding a number of topics pertaining to Man and ones pilgrimage through life.

The Negro Past and It's Challenge for the Future

Boston, MA, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

In honor of Negro History Week, Dr. King offers this speech on the black community's past and future in America.

Religion

Dr. King writes on the topic of religion, stating that the people living in the 18th century regarded religion as "the source of both political tyranny and social conflict."