Celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

We celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the third Monday in January. This year marks 45 years since his death; had he lived January 15th would be his 85th birthday. If you are looking for more information about Dr. King and his work, look no farther.

First,  check out these research tools from the library. Biography Reference Center and Biography in Context are resources that provide both full length and short biographies. In Biography in Context you can even find articles from daily newspapers and wire services, plus magazine articles. If you need even more print materials, check out the Biography and Genealogy Master Index. This resource contains citations only, so it is helpful for locating biographies in other reference books and journals. If you aren’t at a Multnomah County Library location, you’ll need to log in with your library card and PIN to access these biography resources. 

For primary sources, both The King Center and The King Research and Education Institute are good sites to visit. The King Center was created by the late Coretta Scott King in 1968 and is dedicated to “educating the world on the life, legacy and teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” His papers are archived here, and you can search the digital archives from the website. The King Research and Education Institute located on the  Stanford University campus also has a great website that provides a timeline, biography, and writings by an about Martin Luther King, Jr. Audio from Dr. King’s speeches as well as videos about his work during the Civil Rights movement and other movements he inspired are available online as well.

One of the most famous speeches Dr. King is remembered for was the one he gave during The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The March took place in Washington, D.C., on August 28, 1963. Attended by around 250,000 people, it was the largest demonstration ever seen in the nation's capital. Visit InfoPlease for more information on the march. March on Washington crowd photo

For more amazing images, to enhance a project, or to get a better sense of the work of Dr. King visit The Seattle Times Special Report.The photo  below is from one of the galleries featured

Dr. King and Coretta Scott King

There are a number of great films and video clips about Dr. King. PBS featured a public television program called Citzen King.  This resource also includes primary resources including letters and speeches, a map of the Civil Rights hot spots, and a list of books, articles, and websites to find more information about Dr. King. Biography channel also has a short bio

Be sure to check The Oregonian for events around Portland in celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and also The United Way to participate in the Martin Luther King weekend of service. 

If you want to explore this topic more, or if you have questions about any of this, you know what to do: Ask a Librarian! We’re happy to help. 

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