21    Jan 20130 comments

Holidays: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Martin Luther KingToday, the US observes Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a Federal holiday.

Dr. King was world-renowned for his work for the civil rights movement in America, leading to the Civil Rights Act of 1968.

Martin Luther King, Jr. was born Michael King, Jr. in 1924 in Atlanta, Georgia. His name was changed 10 years later, after his family visited Eisleben, Germany, the birthplace of Martin Luther, who founded Protestantism. His father, Michael King Sr., changed both his name and his son's name to Martin Luther in honor of him.

You can read more about his family history.

At Presidential inaugurations, it is traditional for the President of the United States to take the oath of office with one hand on a Bible.  At President Obama's inauguration today he used two Bibles, one belonging to Abraham Lincoln, and the other to Martin Luther King, Jr..

One of the most famous moments in Dr. King's short life, was a speech he gave and known as "I have a dream," in which he lays out his vision for an America that celebrates freedom and equality.

Here's a short excerpt from the speech.

Do you remember the speech? How do you commemorate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day?

Let us know in the comments below.

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