Martin Luther King Jr. Day falls on the third Monday every January. As a nation, we take that day to celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr., as well as, to celebrate providing service. This year that day falls on January 21, 2014– which, for the first time ever coincides with the weekend of the Presidential Inauguration. As Martin Luther King Day approaches, we wanted to share some little-known facts about Martin Luther King Jr. and the holiday we honor him on.
In 1934, five years after his birth, his family discovered Martin’s name had been recorded wrong on his birth certificate. The certificate said Michael King, so his name had to be legally changed to Martin Luther King Jr.
In 1939, Martin sang with his church choir in Atlanta at the gala premiere of the movieGone with The Wind.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
He skipped the 9th and 12th grades in school and entered Morehouse College at age 15.
He had Bachelor degrees in sociology and theology. In 1955 he received his Ph.D. from Boston University.
From 1957 until his death in 1968, he traveled more than 6 million miles. He gave over 2500 speeches during his travels. He also wrote 5 books and had published countless numbers of articles in newspapers and magazines.
In 1964, at age 35, he was the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
According to a 1999 Gallup poll, King is the second most admired person in the 20th century .
Presently there are 730+ U.S. cities that have streets named after King.
King is 1 of 10 20th century world martyrs who has a statue at Westminster Abbey
Martin Luther King, Jr. day was not recognized as a paid national holiday by all 50 states until 2000.
The U2 song, “Pride (In The Name of Love)” was written about Martin Luther King, Jr.
He helped save the original series of Star Trek by encouraging Nichelle Nichols, who played Uhura, to stay on the show.
He was the first black American to be named TIME Man of the Year.
The words ‘I Have a Dream’ were not originally in the speech and were ad-libbed on the day of.
Martin Luther King Jr
Kings autopsy revealed that although he was thirty-nine years old at his death, he had the heart of a sixty year old. It can be assumed that it was due to the stress of thirteen years in the civil rights movement. King verbally predicted he would not live to see 40.
The Lorraine Hotel where King was assassinated is now the site of the National Civil Rights Museum
Martin Luther King’s “traveling bible” will be used to swear in President Obama at his second inauguration.