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"Speeches"

MLK Press Statement Regarding Riots in Los Angeles

Friday, August 20, 1965

In this statement to the press, Dr. King comments on the Watts Riots that took place in Los Angeles, California. He further discusses the economic, social and racial inequalities that he feels were the cause of the violence.

Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech

Thursday, December 10, 1964

This version of Dr. King's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech is typed in all capitals, probably to make it easier to read from while delivering the speech.

Beyond Vietnam

Tuesday, April 4, 1967

In Dr. Kings Beyond Vietnam address, he discusses seven major reasons for bringing Vietnam into "a field of moral vision," five things that the government should do to remove itself from conflict with Vietnam, the National Liberation Front of South Vietnam, and Premier Diem. Dr. King also encourages those in the churches and the synagogues to speak out against the war in Vietnam.

MLK Statement at Peace Event in Geneva

Monday, May 29, 1967

Dr. King delivered this statement in Geneva at the Pacem In Terris ("Peace on Earth") II Convocation about the "costly, bloody and futile war in Vietnam."

Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy on House Resolution 7152

Tuesday, October 15, 1963

Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy comments on House Bill 7152, the bill that eventually culminated in the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Kennedy argues that the bill is a "test" to white Americans and that it must "effectively eliminate racial discrimination in voting, education and in employment." He addresses the eleven titles of the bill and describes the differences between the current bill and the version introduced by the president. Kennedy finally asserts that if the bill is not passed, then "the whole nation will be the loser."

MLK's Statement Upon Return to Montgomery

Friday, October 24, 1958

Dr. King expounds on his brutal attack by the "deranged woman" Izola Ware Curry, in which he was stabbed near the heart. He stresses the importance of remaining committed to nonviolence and says he is grateful for the outpouring of sympathy and affection he received while in the hospital.

MLK Remarks at the Launching of SCLC's Crusade for Citizenship

Wednesday, February 12, 1958

Dr. King delivered this speech at a launch meeting for the Crusade for Citizenship in Miami, Florida. He discusses the denial of African Americans' right to vote by relating it to other former disfranchised Americans such as those who did not own property and women. Dr. King discusses the hypocrisy in some American officials' advocacy of democratic election in other European countries as well as the social and economic welfare of all Americans.

Methodist Church Statement on Vietnam Conflict

The Board of Christian Social Concerns of the Methodist Church releases a statement regarding the conflict in Vietnam and possible outcomes and solutions. The board urges steps leading to a withdrawal of US forces from Vietnam.

The Montgomery Story

Wednesday, June 27, 1956

Dr. King delivers an address entitled the "Montgomery Story" at the NAACP 47th Annual Convention. He address several issues throughout the address including: segregation, civil rights, equality, slavery and religion.

Statements on Jobs and Poverty

Friday, November 6, 1964

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.

The Task of Christian Leadership Training for Education in the Local Community

This undated manuscript was used as the basis for a speech Dr. King gave at the National Sunday School and Baptist Training Union Congress in Atlantic City, New Jersey in 1944. Dr. King defines community, lists three current problems within the community and explains the role of Christian leaders and education in a community. Dr. King identifies the most pressing problems as the economy, divisions within Christianity and race relations.

Retirement Speech from MLK to Dr. Benjamin E. May

Dr. King honors Dr. Mays for serving as the President of Morehouse College as he enters into retirement.

Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech Draft

This is a draft of Dr. King's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech. Handwritten notes are written in the margins to indicate future amendments. Dr. King states that he experiences this moment of acceptance for himself and "those magnificent devotees of nonviolence who have moved so courageously against the ramparts of racial injustice."

MLK Discusses Plans for the 1963 March on Washington

Wednesday, January 23, 1963

While in Detroit, Michigan, Dr. King discloses his intentions for the upcoming March on Washington.

Eulogy for Robert W. Spike

Dr. King highlights the life and work of American clergyman, theologian, and civil rights leader, Robert W. Spike. Spike was a leader known for mobilizing church participation for the Civil Rights Movement. Less than one year after accepting a professorship at the University of Chicago, he was murdered.

Speech from MLK about Jews Living in the Soviet Union

In this document, Dr. King protests the Soviet Union's treatment of the Jews there. He stresses the need for the Soviet Union to treat its Jewish community fairly. He says: "[w]e cannot sit complacently by the wayside while while our Jewish brothers in the Soviet Union face the possible extinction of their cultural and spiritual life."

MLK Address at the Georgia State Capitol Regarding Julian Bond

Friday, January 14, 1966

Dr. King delivers this speech at the State Capitol of Georgia protesting the legislation refusal to seat black politician Julian Bond. King calls this a "grave injustice" particularly since the state legislature of Georgia considers itself protecting the United States Constitution. Dr. King points out the irony of this act and exposes other irresponsible actions of the legislature.

MLK Addresses the District 65 AFL-CIO

Saturday, September 8, 1962

This is an address given by Dr. King to District 65 of the National AFL-CIO Convention in Miami, Beach. Dr. King recognizes their contribution to the Southern Christen Leadership Conference.

Otline: The Philosophy of Nonviolence

This document outlines Dr. King's speech, "The Philosophy of Nonviolence." He notes both the means and ends of nonviolence and explains that the "highest expression" of non-injury is love. He describes nonviolence as an activism technique and outlines the goals of the philosophy.

House Un-American Activities Committee

Friday, May 15, 1964

This article summarizes the consequences that derive from the House Un-American Activities Committee labeling Civil Rights leaders as communists.

MLK Address to the Tenth Anniversary Convention of the SCLC

Dr. King, at the Tenth Anniversary Convention of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, addresses numerous civil rights issues the organization is addressing throughout America.

MLK Address at the AFL-CIO Fourth Constitutional Convention

Monday, December 11, 1961

Dr. King delivers a speech at the Fourth Constitutional Convention of the AFL-CIO to address the lack of equality and rights for laborers and people of color. Dr. King encourages those at the convention to remain steadfast in the fight for social justice in order to overcome the mountain of oppression.

The Wind of Change is Blowing

Wednesday, June 27, 1962

Dr. King addresses the positive changes that have taken place across the world and how they should continue to occur until equality is reached.

MLK's Statement at Prayer Rally in Albany, Georgia

Wednesday, August 15, 1962

After the bombing of a local church, Dr. King delivered this statement attempting to both criticize the actions of the perpetrators and provide a sense of calm to Albany demonstrators.

Excerpts from The Negro and the American Dream

Sunday, September 25, 1960

In this address to the Charlotte, North Carolina branch of the NAACP, Dr. King outlines five actions that Negroes must address in order to ensure their own first-class citizenship.

Unitarian Universalist Statement of Consensus on Racial Injustice

Friday, May 20, 1966

The Fifth General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association listed several laws adopted by the association. Some of the laws incorporate civil rights, demonstrations, voting rights, equality, civil disobedience, and discrimination in employment and housing.

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.

1967 Geneva Convocation

Monday, May 29, 1967

Dr. King provides introductory remarks to participants of the Pacem In Terris II Convocation held in Geneva, Switzerland. He addresses several moral and political concerns as it relates war and Vietnam.

MLK Speech at SCLC Staff Retreat

Monday, November 14, 1966

Dr. King addresses the staff of the SCLC at a retreat in Frogmore, South Carolina. He divides his speech into three parts: "whence we have come, where we have come, and where do we go from here." Dr. King thoroughly discusses his thoughts on Communism, the practice of nonviolence, the belief that racism is an "ontological affirmation,"and the weaknesses of Black Power.

Press Statement Regarding Crusade for Citizenship

Saturday, October 5, 1957

Dr. King delivers a statement surrounding the civil rights struggle of the Negro community and the appeals for justice to public officials. He asserts that in regards to the Prayer Pilgrimage, there cannot be a citizen whom does not have the right to vote. With the initiation of the Crusade for Citizenship, the citizenship of the Negro has the opportunity to be a reality.