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Conception of Man

Dr. King documents a passage from Reinhold Niebuhr's work "The Nature and Destiny of Man." He would later cite this work in his essay "The Theology of Reinhold Niebuhr," written during his career at Boston University.

Crozer Theological Seminary: The Bulletin

Saturday, July 1, 1950
North Carolina (NC), Pittsburgh, PA, Pennsylvania (PA), Philadelphia, PA, Delaware (DE), New York (NY), Atlanta, GA

The Bulletin, a newsletter sent to Dr. King from the Crozer Theological Seminary, includes information on the 1950 commencement. This is this institution from which Dr. King himself will graduate from in 1951.

Letter to MLK Regarding Support and Donation

Saturday, September 27, 1958
New York, NY, New York (NY)

A New York couple and their 9 year old son, mailed Dr. King this get well letter praying for his recovery and saluting him for his work.

The Drum Major Instinct Sermon Outline

Monday, February 5, 1968

Dr. King outlines on scraps of paper his great sermon based on Mark 10:37. Everyone wants to be first, to get attention, he says, starting with our first cry as a baby. Adults want to do good and be praised. If the drum major instinct is not harnessed, the personality is distorted and we become boastful, gossip, put others down. On a societal level, this leads to exclusive social groups, racial prejudice and war. King states that Jesus’ answer is to dedicate this great force to worthy ends – goodness, moral excellence, generosity, kindness and service. .

A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart

GHANA, ISRAEL

Dr. King uses Matthew 10:16 as the text for this sermon delivered August 30, 1959 at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery. Soft mindedness, he asserts, makes men gullible, superstitious, and fearful of change and fosters the belief that science and religion are in conflict. It contributes to racial prejudice and is capitalized upon by dictators. But tough mindedness, King says, must be tempered by a compassionate heart. The nonviolent struggle for freedom and justice must combine tough mindedness and tenderness of heart.

Letter from Dora McDonald to Linda F. Neslage

Tuesday, June 20, 1967
Illinois (IL)

Dora McDonald informs Linda F. Neslage that she has the permission to print Dr. King's "I Have A Dream" speech in the textbook, "Principles and Types of Speech."

Letter from Lynn Ewell to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. about Comments on College Course

Tuesday, March 12, 1968

In this letter Lynn Ewell inquires as to whether Dr. King will offer any comments pertaining to the college course "Education of the Adolescent" and the class research topic of "Building an Enduring Peace."

Letter from Sheldon Rambell to MLK

Monday, April 17, 1967
New York, NY, New York (NY)

Sheldon Rambell congratulates Dr. King on the success of the peace demonstrations in New York. He also compliments Dr. King's confidence and strength illustrated through his appearance on CBS.

Letter from Ernest Shaefer to Dora McDonald

Sunday, November 6, 1966
Pennsylvania (PA), Georgia (GA), Atlanta, GA

Mr. Shaefer, Executive Secretary of the Hadley Executive Committee, requests information from Ms. McDonald regarding Dr. King's scheduled lecture in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania.

Revised School Desegregation Policies Under Civil Rights Act of 1964

Thursday, December 1, 1966

This document, published by the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, gives revised policies for school desegregation. The list of areas covered includes unequal programs and facilities, desegregation of staff and dismissals.

The Boycott Explained

Saturday, April 10, 1965
Alabama (AL)

Dr. King writes this article in the form of questions and answers to explain the purpose and impact of an upcoming boycott in Alabama.

Anonymous Sender Criticizes MLK

Michigan (MI), VIETNAM

This anonymous writer challenges Dr. King with his complaints concerning the Civil Rights Movement. He argues that a Negro man should be held responsible for breaking the law and should expect rightful punishment.

Letter from Carey Preston to Dora McDonald

Thursday, October 11, 2012
Illinois (IL), Chicago, IL, Georgia (GA), Atlanta, GA, Pennsylvania (PA), Philadelphia, PA

Mrs. Preston acknowledges receipt of letter from Dora McDonald regarding the possibility of Dr. King speaking at the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Convention. Due to the Sorority's intense desire to have Dr. King as the speaker, Ms. Preston is willing to wait for the confirmation.

Letter from Mr. William A. Rutherford to Marlon Brando

Wednesday, February 28, 1968
California (CA)

In this letter, Mr. Rutherford writes on behalf of Dr. King to Mr. Brando. Dr. King is inquiring if Mr. Brando would be able to host a fundraising event in Hollywood on March 16, 1968.

Memorandum from John Gunther to Urban Coalition Steering Committee

Monday, December 11, 1967

John Gunther submits a report to the members of the Steering Committee of the Urban Coalition stating that the Urban Coalition should be concerned with issues related to education, employment and housing. The memorandum outlines the job of the Council of Local Coalitions and states that the Steering Committee may add to the Coalition's numbers at any time. Lastly, Gunther informs the members of the staffing polices explaining how staffing will be planned on a yearly basis.

Letter from MLK and Associates to Mr. Grover Hall

Friday, January 11, 1957
Alabama (AL), Montgomery, AL, Georgia (GA), Atlanta, GA

Dr. King and associates write to Grover Hall, Editor of the Montgomery Advertiser, to express appreciation for an article the publication carried. The clergymen state that "law and order can be restored" if other periodicals throughout the South follow the newspaper's example.

Letter from Genevieve Fay to MLK

Tuesday, April 18, 1967
Illinois (IL), Washington, D.C.

This letter from Mrs. Fay gives her appreciation to Dr. King for his efforts. She expresses her deep concern for the motives of the political figures in Washington, D.C., and the importance of Dr. King's presence to counter the imbalance.

Letter from Gordon Bryant to MLK

Tuesday, February 9, 1965
AUSTRALIA

Gordon Bryant, a representative of the Parliament of Australia, extends an invitation to Dr. King to assist the Aboriginal people of Australia in gaining equal rights.

Anthropology

Dr. King outlines and references ideas on anthropology.

Letter from John W. Wydler to MLK

Tuesday, January 5, 1965
Mississippi (MS), New York (NY), Atlanta, GA

Congressman Wydler of New York responds to Dr. King's letter on the seating of the Mississippi delegation to Congress. Dr. King's letter, sent to several government officials prior to the vote, urges House Representatives to vote against the seating of the current delegation.

Citizens' Crusade Against Poverty Southern Rural Action Project Progress Report

Wednesday, August 24, 1966
Georgia (GA), Alabama (AL), Mississippi (MS), Chicago, IL, Illinois (IL), Detroit, MI, Michigan (MI), Ohio (OH), Brooklyn, NY, New York (NY), Massachusetts (MA), Atlanta, GA

This document contains the Citizens' Crusade Against Poverty Southern Rural Action Project Progress Report. Randolph T. Blackwell, former program director of the SCLC is now director of the Southern Rural Action Project.

Letter from Charles McC. Mathias, Jr to MLK

Tuesday, August 31, 1965
Washington, D.C., Atlanta, GA

Charles McC. Mathias, Jr. thanks Dr. King for his previous telegram in support of the discharge petition on home rule for the District of Columbia. The home rule gives some of congress' power over the district to the local government. The petition was finally approved in 1973.

Letter from Grandison Cherry-El to MLK

Thursday, October 21, 1965
Washington, D.C., UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, New York (NY), New York, NY, Georgia (GA), Atlanta, GA, Michigan (MI), Maryland (MD), Baltimore, MD, Detroit, MI, Illinois (IL), Chicago, IL

Grandison Cherry-El, Minister with The Moorish Science Temple of America, contacts US Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbak in reference to discrimination in citizenship in American public schools.

Letter from Hano Bailey to MLK

Friday, December 22, 1967
Washington, D.C., UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Hano Bailey praises Dr. King for asking black athletes "to sit out of the Olympics." He informs Dr. King that there are 15 teachers at his University writing letters to their relatives in support of Dr. King's campaign.

Notecard Written by MLK Regarding "Bernard of Clairvaux"

This is an example of one of the many notecards Dr. King kept in cardboard filing box for reference to quotations, ideas, books and other publications, definitions, and bible verses.

Machiavelli

Dr. King disagrees with Machiavelli's notion that political morality should be separated from social morality. Dr. King uses a quote from Heinrich von Treitschke to further analyze the issue.

Letter from MLK to Rev. M. Sardon

Tuesday, October 9, 1962
Albany, GA, Georgia (GA), Illinois (IL), Chicago, IL

Dr. King offers his gratitude to Rev. Sardon for his participation in and support of the Albany movement.

America

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Dr. King quotes a statement from American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr regarding the country's "historic situation in which the paradise of domestic security is suspended in a hell of global insecurity."

Letter from Mrs. Robert King to MLK

Ohio (OH)

Mrs. Robert King thanks Dr. King for his work and gives him a "contribution to the cause of Peace."

Letter from Peggy Hutter to Mrs. King

Friday, April 5, 1968

A white college student writes to Mrs. King, expressing her condolences and shock after the death of Dr. King.