Ever knew Martin Luther King Jr. was arrested 29 times for his civil rights work?

Michael Eli Dokosi February 23, 2020
Martin Luther King, Jr. via blackhistory.com

You might know about Martin Luther King, Jr. being assassinated in 1968, you might even know about his mother Alberta King’s murder on June 30, 1974. Perhaps you also know about King’s brother A. D. King’s drowning on July 21, 1969.

Are you, however, aware that the civil rights leader went to jail 29 times often detained in various cities in the south?

According to the King Center, he was arrested for acts of civil disobedience and on trumped-up charges, such as when he was jailed in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1956 for driving 30 miles per hour in a 25-mile-per-hour zone.

Image result for dates martin luther king was arrested

Blackhistory.com offers a few times King was arrested.

January 26, 1956 — He was arrested in Montgomery, Alabama as part of a “Get Tough” campaign to intimidate the bus boycotters. Four days later, on January 30, his home was bombed.

March 22, 1956 — King, Rosa Parks and more than 100 others were arrested on charges of organizing the Montgomery Bus Boycott in protest of Parks’ treatment.

September 3, 1958 — While attempting to attend the arraignment of a man accused of assaulting Abernathy, King is arrested outside Montgomery’s Recorder’s Court and charged with loitering. He is released a short time later on $100 bond.

Image result for dates martin luther king was arrested
via Wikimedia Commons

September 5, 1958 — King was convicted of disobeying a police order and fined $14. He chose to spend 14 days in jail, but was soon released when Police Commissioner Clyde Sellers paid his fine.

October 19, 1960 — He was arrested in Atlanta, Georgia during a sit-in while waiting to be served at a restaurant. He was sentenced to four months in jail, but after intervention by then presidential candidate John Kennedy and his brother Robert Kennedy, he was released.

May 4, 1961 — He was arrested in Albany, Georgia for obstructing the sidewalk and parading without a permit.

July 27, 1962 — He was arrested again and jailed for holding a prayer vigil in Albany, Georgia.

Image result for dates martin luther king was arrested

April 12, 1963 — He and Ralph Abernathy were arrested in Birmingham, Alabama for demonstrating without a permit. During his time in jail, he wrote what is now known as his historic “Letter from Birmingham Jail.”

June 11, 1964 — He was arrested for protesting for the integration of public accommodations in St. Augustine, Florida.

February 2, 1965 — He was arrested in Selma, Alabama during a voting rights demonstration, but the demonstrations continued leading to demonstrators being beaten at the Pettus Bridge by state highway patrolmen and sheriff’s deputies.

Last Edited by:Kent Mensah Updated: February 23, 2020


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