Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Facts

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is just a few days away. There are many things everyone know about him, like his “I Have a Dream” speech, and how he lead the civil rights movement. But to celebrate his upcoming birthday we thought we share a few not so known facts with you.


  • His given name was not Martin Luther. When he was born, his parents name him Michael Lewis King, Jr. After his father, Michael Lewis King, Sr., went on a trip to Germany and met the famous reformer, Martin Luther, his father changed his name in tribute. There are different accounts to when Jr. changed his name. Some say right when his father did, and some say not til he was a teen. It is also said that his immediate family forever called him “Mike” despite his name change.
  • King Jr. started college at the young age of 15! He skipped both 9th and 11th grades in college. He received his bachelor’s degree in sociology at the age of 19.
  • Today, he is remembered as an amazing public speaker with excerpts from his speeches being quotes and shared all of the time. In his first year of seminary, however, he received a C in public speaking. Never fear. By the time he graduated he was at the top of his class with straight A’s, and he was valedictorian and class president.
  • He is the youngest male to date to win a Nobel Peace Prize. He won in 1964 at the age of 35. He donated all of his winnings to the Civil Rights movement. He has also won a Congressional Gold Medal, a Medal of Freedom and a Grammy. He won his Grammy in 1971 for Best Spoken Word Album for “Why I Oppose the War in Vietnam.”
  • Stress took a major toll on his body. His autopsy revealed that despite being just 39 upon his death, his doctors noted that he had the heart of a 60 year old.


We hope you all enjoy this upcoming holiday and enjoyed learning a little bit more about the man behind the holiday!

As a reminder, all BH offices will be closed to observe Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Have a great day!


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