If he were alive, Martin Luther King Jr. would be celebrating his 84th birthday this weekend. The life of the civil rights leader is being remembered across the country with marches, speeches, exhibits and memorial services. In Central Kentucky several events are planned. King, a minister, Nobel Peace Prize winner and leader in America's civil rights movement, gave his most famous speech in 1963, calling for an end to racial discrimination that later became known as the "I Have a Dream" speech. He was assassinated in 1968 in Memphis, Tenn. The national holiday was set in 1983 as the third Monday of January. Coincidentally, the inauguration of the second term of President Barack Obama will take place on MLK Day.
Other civil rights leaders
Herald-Leader graphic artist Chris Ware has created an article called "Did You Know?" for the February issue of Cobblestone, a magazine about U.S. history for ages 9-14. In "Did You Know," Ware shares information about four black women. Here's a sneak peek at his work:
In the 1950s and '60s, black women were fighting for their rights as blacks and as women. Here's a look at some remarkable black females who made a difference.
On Sept. 25, 1957, the National Guard escorted Elizabeth Eckford and eight other students into the all-white Central High School in Little Rock, Ark. This group of students became known as the Little Rock Nine. It was against the law to segregate students, but it took these nine young people facing abuse to test enforcement of the law. Ultimately, the high school was desegregated.