Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site

Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site

Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site is traditionally black neighborhood of several blocks in Atlanta includes Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birth home, the Ebenezer Baptist Church where he was a pastor, and his gravesite. Martin Luther King, Jr., was the nation's most prominent leader in the 20th-century struggle for civil rights.

Born in 1929, he excelled as a student and graduated from Atlanta's Morehouse College in 1948. Also in 1948 he was ordained at the Ebenezer Baptist Church. Following his ordination, he became Assistant Pastor of Ebenezer. He later studied at the Crozer Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania, then graduate studies at Boston University.

In 1954, King became the pastor of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama. Following Rosa Parks' refusal to move to the back of a bus in Montgomery, Martin Luther King, Jr., led the successful Montgomery Bus Boycott from 1955 to 1956 (381 days). In 1957 he was elected president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), an organization formed to provide new leadership for the now burgeoning civil rights movement.

He moved back to Atlanta in 1960 and was co-pastor with his father at the Ebenezer Baptist Church while still President of the SCLC. Martin Luther King, Jr., worked tirelessly to assure the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

He was arrested 30 times for his participation in civil rights activities and delivered some of the most famous speeches of the 20th century including his speech at the March on Washington in 1963, his acceptance speech of the Nobel Peace Prize, his last sermon at Ebenezer Baptist Church, and his final "Mountaintop" speech in Memphis.

King was assassinated in 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was helping striking sanitation workers.