Martin Luther King Jr. is one of the most notable figures in American history. Each year, we celebrate his memory and the beautiful hope he inspired in millions. However, despite the fact that MLK spent a considerable amount of time in the spotlight and under the scrutiny of the public eye, there are still some things that many people don’t know. With that in mind, here we present our list of 15 things you probably didn’t know about Martin Luther King Jr. Check out part one below, and stay tuned for part two, coming soon!
Number Fifteen: He Is the Youngest Recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. It’s true! King received the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in December of 1964. He made his acceptance speech at Oslo University in Norway.
Number Fourteen: Before He Was Martin, He Was Michael. King’s birth name was actually Michael King Jr., not Martin Luther King Jr. King’s father was named Michael King, and he changed his name from Michael to Martin when he became an ordained minister. King Jr. changed his name to Martin just like his father, although his father didn’t want him to at first.
Number Thirteen: He Attempted Suicide. King was so cut up by the death of his grandmother, he jumped out of a second-story window when he was 12 years old in an attempt to kill himself.
Number Twelve: He Graduated From College at 19. King began attending college when he was just 15 years old! He was able to enroll at Moorehouse College so young because of a program that was trying to boost enrollment by allowing bright high school students to go ahead and enroll. When he first entered college, he wanted to become a doctor or lawyer.
Number Eleven: He Spent His Wedding Night in a Funeral Parlor. Rather than honeymoon somewhere fancy, King and his new bride, Coretta, spent their first night as a married couple in – get this – funeral parlor. At the time, there were no honeymoon suites available for African Americans.
Number Ten: He Was Stabbed at a Book Signing. In 1958, a woman with poor mental faculties stabbed King while he was at a book signing. He chose not to press charges, although he almost died.
Number Nine: No, He Was Not a Communist. Many rumors have made their way to the internet implying King was closely connected to Communist organizations. However, this is decidedly untrue.