Martin Luther King: 39 Years on ... 4 April 2007 Will Be Exactly 39 Years since Dr Martin Luther King Jr Was Assassinated in Memphis, Tennesee, USA. Professors A.B. Assensoh and Yvette Alex-Assensoh (Both of Indiana University, USA) Examine Dr King's Legacy by Focusing on His Archive Which Was Acquired Last June for Safekeeping by Morehouse College, One of His Alma Maters

By Assensoh, A. B.; Alex-Assensoh, Yvette | New African, February 2007 | Go to article overview

Martin Luther King: 39 Years on ... 4 April 2007 Will Be Exactly 39 Years since Dr Martin Luther King Jr Was Assassinated in Memphis, Tennesee, USA. Professors A.B. Assensoh and Yvette Alex-Assensoh (Both of Indiana University, USA) Examine Dr King's Legacy by Focusing on His Archive Which Was Acquired Last June for Safekeeping by Morehouse College, One of His Alma Maters


Assensoh, A. B., Alex-Assensoh, Yvette, New African


Civil rights scholars and activists as well as friends of Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr, who was assassinated on 4 April 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee, USA, jubilated when it was announced on 27 June last year that the important archive of the famous civil rights leader would be retained by his undergraduate alma mater, Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr King was a 1948 graduate of Morehouse College.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Deemed a historic archive of the 20th century, it is known to include Dr King's significant academic papers as well as his handwritten Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech and his famous 1963 "I Have a Dream" speech.

For many of Dr King's admirers and former fellow civil rights allies, it is very comforting that the documents are to stay in his hometown of Atlanta, and more so in the possession of Morehouse College, thanks to a $32m deal arranged by progressive businesses and philanthropists with the King family.

Dr Walter Massey, president of Morehouse College and also himself an old boy of the college said: "Given the important role Morehouse played in Dr King's intellectual, spiritual and moral development, we believe there simply is no better place for these papers to reside. We are grateful to the King family for their confidence in Morehouse to serve as the repository for this legacy, which reflects the best thinking of our nation's most outstanding leader, and of Morehouse College's most outstanding alumnus."

Morehouse College played crucial roles in Dr King's life, indeed up to the time of his death in 1968. For, apart from its famous chapel being used for part of Dr King's funeral rites, the college's president emeritus, Benjamin Elijah Mays, gave the eulogy of Dr King, as both men had planned.

Dr Mays revealed early in his eulogy: "It was my desire that if I pre-deceased Dr King, he would pay tribute to me on my final day. It was his wish that if he pre-deceased me, I deliver the homily at his funeral. Fate has decreed that I eulogise him. I wish that it might have been otherwise, for after all, I am three score years and ten and Martin Luther is dead at 39."

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

A lifesize statute of Dr King has been erected on the Morehouse campus in honour of its most famous alumnus. Therefore, his archive has proverbially come home to a befitting honour and rest. Reportedly, it was at the last minute that a group of very progressive businesses and philanthropists came together to raise the needed funds to buy the papers from Dr King's four living children: Yolanda King; Martin III; Dexter King; and Rev Dr Bernice Albertine King, who gave the powerful eulogy at her mother's funeral in Atlanta last year.

Dr King's children and other family members (initially including his widow, Mrs Coretta Scott King, who also died last year) had always wished to have a secure home for the papers instead of remaining in family hands. Therefore, the Morehouse arrangement was in line with that desire but not merely as a matter of greed as some critics have claimed against the King family members involved in the sale. Several academic institutions and their leaders initially felt uncomfortable that such a crucial civil rights throve could very easily fall into the hands of non-black institutions. It was a similar feeling that several helpless African academic institutions felt when the archive of Ghana's first president, Kwame Nkrumah, including his unpublished as well as several handwritten papers, could not be housed on an African campus. Thanks to Nkrumah's immediate family and June Milne, his literary executrix, who made sure that Howard University--a historically black institution in the US--retained the precious archive of the 20th century's foremost pan-Africanist.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

The New York-based auction house, Sotheby's, had arranged for the sale of Dr King's archive of nearly 10,000 items on 30 June last year. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Martin Luther King: 39 Years on ... 4 April 2007 Will Be Exactly 39 Years since Dr Martin Luther King Jr Was Assassinated in Memphis, Tennesee, USA. Professors A.B. Assensoh and Yvette Alex-Assensoh (Both of Indiana University, USA) Examine Dr King's Legacy by Focusing on His Archive Which Was Acquired Last June for Safekeeping by Morehouse College, One of His Alma Maters
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.