The SCLC Story in Words and Pictures.

"Dedicated to the millions of persons who are a part of the nonviolent revolution": First Edition, First Printing of The SCLC Story; signed by Martin Luther King, Jr. and containing one of the earliest appearances of his I Have a Dream Speech

The SCLC Story in Words and Pictures.

KING, Jr. Martin Luther. Editor's note by Ed Clayton.


Item Number: 141073

Atlanta, Georgia: Southern Christian Leadership Conference, 1964.

First edition, first printing of The SCLC Story containing one of the first appearances in print of Martin Luther King Jr.’s I Have a Dream Speech. Quarto, original illustrated wrappers as issued, illustrated with photographs including a full-page photograph of King, photographs of the officers, executive board, regional, and secretarial staffs of the SCLC. Signed by Martin Luther King, Jr. on the front panel, “Best Wishes Martin Luther King.” With a letter of provenance that relays that the magazine was signed at an event where King spoke in Atlanta in 1964 and that it may have been first obtained when the Coliseum in Los Angeles hosted the Religious Witness for Human Dignity on May 31, 1964. Dr. King gave a forty-minute speech at this event, of which Pepperdine University Archives has a recording that can be hear online. In near fine condition. Very rare and desirable, containing one of the earliest appearances of King’s powerful and iconic I Have a Dream Speech.

Baptist minister and activist Martin Luther King Jr. became the most visible spokesperson and leader in the civil rights movement from 1954 through 1968. He is best known for his role in the advancement of civil rights using the tactics of nonviolence and civil disobedience based on his Christian beliefs and inspired by the nonviolent activism of Mahatma Gandhi. King led the 1955 Montgomery bus boycott and in 1957 became the first president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). With the SCLC, he led an unsuccessful 1962 struggle against segregation in Albany, Georgia, and helped organize the nonviolent 1963 protests in Birmingham, Alabama. He also helped organize the 1963 March on Washington, where he delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. On October 14, 1964, King received the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolent resistance. In 1965, he helped to organize the Selma to Montgomery marches, and the following year he and the SCLC took the movement north to Chicago to work on segregated housing. In his final years he expanded his focus to include opposition towards poverty and the Vietnam War, alienating many of his liberal allies with a 1967 speech titled "Beyond Vietnam". In 1968, King was planning a national occupation of Washington, D.C., to be called the Poor People's Campaign, when he was assassinated on April 4 in Memphis, Tennessee. He was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal. Martin Luther King Jr. Day was established as a holiday in numerous cities and states beginning in 1971, and as a U.S. federal holiday in 1986. The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., was dedicated in 2011.

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