Voices Of Change: Martin Luther King Sr.
Martin Luther King Sr. faced Jim Crow and racism early in his life. He was born in 1897, one year after the Supreme Court’s Plessy v. Fergusson decision that upheld the “separate but equal” doctrine.
As a young man during the early 1900s, King (known by many today as "Daddy King”) was inspired by local ministers who risked speaking out against racial injustice. He decided to become a minister and, eventually, a civil rights activist.
King headed Atlanta’s Civic and Political League and NAACP. He organized voting rights rallies and worked to initiate equal pay for Atlanta black teachers.
A supporter of former governor Jimmy Carter, King was instrumental in garnering the support of civil rights activists for Carter’s bid for the Presidency. Carter asked King to deliver invocations at both the 1976 and 1980 Democratic National Conventions.
But perhaps King’s most significant contribution to Atlanta and the civil rights movement was the influence he had on the development of Martin Luther King Jr., who once said of his father, “He set forth a noble example that I didn’t mind following.”