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Pilgrimage to Nonviolence

Dr. King's essay "Pilgrimage to Nonviolence" provides a replete account of the thinkers, ideas and sentiments responsible for his pledge to nonviolence.

Letter from Govenor Nelson A. Rockefeller to MLK

Wednesday, September 5, 1962

New York Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller encloses a copy of "The Future of Federalism." His book "traces the development of the federal idea in the United States."

Letter from Joan Daves to MLK

Tuesday, September 8, 1964

This letter from Ms. Daves to Dr. King features requests regarding his itinerary for his trip to England.

Letter from Arthur L. Baney to the SCLC

Thursday, June 24, 1965

Arthur Baney writes the SCLC on behalf of Eastman Dillon, Union Securities & Company regarding five shares of General Electric Company stock that was gifted to the SCLC by Mary Cushing H. Niles.

Letter from John to MLK

John discusses some points on religious ethics with Dr. King and offers gratitude for a Labor Day dinner with the King family.

A Chronology of Violence and Intimidation in Mississippi Since 1961

Thursday, April 4, 1963

This pamphlet produced by SNCC includes a number of reported violent attacks and intimidation tactics imposed on black Mississippi citizens from January 1, 1961 through February 4, 1964.

Letter from Helen Marrow to MLK

Thursday, April 6, 1967

Mrs. Marrow thanks Dr. King for his leadership and position on the Vietnam War. She also encloses a special composition dedicated to Dr. King for his commitment to peace.

Letter from Herbert Jones to MLK

Wednesday, June 5, 1963

Mr. Jones informs Dr. King of a grassroots civil rights organization (STOP) that seeks to implement a "stay at home" protest nationwide. Mr. Jones seeks Dr. King's assistance to make that happen.

Letter from Edward J. Warren to Senator Jacob K Javits

Friday, March 16, 1962

Mr. Warren writes to Senator Javits to confirm receipt of a previous correspondence. He expresses gratitude for Javits position on Human Rights.


Here, Dr. King defines freedom.

Letter from Robert Stock to MLK

Thursday, April 21, 1966

Robert Stock sends Dr. King a copy of a magazine called "Petroleum Today." The magazine offers their audience public information about the oil industry as well as human interests including education, art, and history.

Memo from Tom Offenburger to SCLC Field Staff

Wednesday, March 6, 1968

Tom Offenburger released this memo to members of SCLC's field staff concerning the advertisement of the 1968 Poor People's Campaign.

Letter from Richard Bennett to MLK

Wednesday, April 12, 1967

Richard Bennett requests a letter of greeting from Dr. King to be read at the Minnesota Federation of Teachers Educational Conference.

Death of a King

Mrs. D. M. Murray wrote this poem, entitled "Death of a King," following Dr. King's assassination. Murray writes "you've set an example for us here, your very presence brought us cheer" and adds a post script asking the recipient to contact her.

Letter from Edna Smith to Ralph Helstein

Thursday, January 26, 1967

In this letter, Edna Smith writes to Mr. Helstein regarding Dorothy Ashford's participation in the Civil Rights Movement. Ashford is a student at Clemson University, who previously worked with the South Carolina Council on Human Relations.

Letter from MLK to Saul S. Sherman

Monday, January 3, 1966

In this letter, Dr. King thanks Mrs. Saul S. Sherman for her contribution to the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. He writes how monumental the change for Negroes in the South has been in the last ten years and how revolutionary the future will be thanks to her generous donation.

Letter from FLING Unifie to MLK

Wednesday, January 17, 1968

Mauricio Gregorio Okatha describes to Dr. King the harsh conditions and struggles of the people in Portuguese, Guinea in their fight for freedom. Mr. Okatha requests the SCLC’s assistance in sending medication and clothing for their soldiers, who are wounded and fighting in rags.

Telegram from MLK to Sheraton Lincoln Hotel

Monday, October 9, 1967

Dr. King makes a reservation with the Sheraton Lincoln Hotel in Texas.

Letter from W. Warner Beckett to MLK

Friday, June 23, 1967

Mr. Beckett, a publisher at New Lady Magazine, writes to Dr. King requesting that he lead an "armada" of people with the intent of focusing on businesses and industries. Mr. Beckett believes that Negroes and concerned whites should fight against large businesses by "diverting money from key industries."

Church Program of the Installation of Rev. A. D. Williams King

Sunday, March 18, 1962

This program details the installation services of Reverend A. D. Williams King at The First Baptist Church of Ensley, Alabama. A number of community and church leaders, including his older brother, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rev. Ralph Abernathy, welcome the young pastor and his family to his new pastorate position.

Letter from Ethelyn Hall to MLK

Saturday, November 30, 1963

Ethelyn L. Hall, a student at the University of Houston, writes Dr. King in reference to SCLC's distribution of literature. Hall is preparing a term paper for a sociology class and requests any available literature relating to civil rights, interracial relations, and racism. She is also interested in learning the purposes and functions of the SCLC.

Letter to Mrs. King from Jose Nieto

Friday, April 5, 1968

This letter from a middle school student in New York City is one of condolence written to Mrs. King the day after Dr. King’s assassination.

Anonymous Letter to MLK

The anonymous author details some of the hardships of his life and expresses his desire to incarcerate Dr. King permanently.

Highlander Center Press Release

This press release details the Highlander Center, an adult education center for people who come to learn how to deal with problems affecting their lives and communities, which was under investigation. The investigation was being conducted to determine if the Highland Center was integrated as stated in its charter.

Draft of I Have a Dream

Wednesday, August 28, 1963

This version of Dr. King's famous "I Have a Dream" speech reveals important changes to ideas and phrases that Dr. King chose either to alter or omit completely the day he addressed the throng gathered before the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. Dr. King's argument against the "normalcy" of bigotry remained a key message on the day he took the podium.

Letter from Jacob Broertjes to Dora McDonald

Friday, August 7, 1964

Jacob Broertjes informs Dora McDonald that Dr. King will speak at two sessions for the European Baptist Federations. The services will be brought to various European countries via television. Mr. Broertjes details the intricacies of Dr. King's visit.

Letter Dated 10/15/62 from D. McDonald to Mel Arnold

Monday, October 15, 1962

Miss. Dora McDonald, at the request of Dr. King, sent a letter to Mr. Mel Arnold acknowledging the enclosure of a sermon by Dr. King. The sermon was entitled, "How Should a Christian View Communism?"

Mr. Reed, Mr. Baldwin and Slums

Dr. King writes a story pertaining to a Mr. Reed and Mr. Baldwin to describe the importance of keeping after one's soul.

Telegram from Mrs. Mary L. Ayler to MLK

Wednesday, November 1, 1967

This telegram is an expression of support and encouragement from Mrs. Ayler of Murphysboro, IL, to Dr. King while he was incarcerated in Birmingham, Alabama.

Letter from Ludovic Luke Barrie to MLK Regarding World Bible Society

In this letter, Ludovic Luke Barrie grants Dr. King the title “Honary President of The World Bible Society, Inc.” for all of his accomplishments.