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Born on January 15, 1929, in Atlanta, Georgia, Michael King Jr. was the middle child of Michael King Sr. and Alberta Williams King. Martin’s Jr. grandfather, A.D. Williams, a minister, moved to Alana in 1893 and took over Ebenezer Baptist Church, a struggling church with a population of 13 people. A.D. later married Jennie Parks and Alberta was the only child that survived. King Sr. came from a poor family of sharecroppers. He married Alberta in 1926 and they moved to A.D. Williams’ home in Atlanta. Upon the earth of Williams, King Sr. took over as pastor at the Baptist Church. Along with Williams, King Sr. also became a successful pastor. His name, Martin Luther King Sr., came from Martin Luther, the German Protestant regions leader. Martin Jr. has two siblings, an older sister, Willie Christine, and a younger brother, Alfred Daniel Williams King. The King home was a loving, and secure environment. Martin Sr. was the ‘mean’ parent and always disciplined the children, while Mrs. King was the opposite. Both parents tired very hard, but there was no of hiding racism and segregation in their lives. King Sr. fought against racial prejudice because he saw racism and segregation as “an affront to God’s will”.
Martin Luther King Jr. attended public school at the age of 5 in Atlanta. In May, 1936 he was baptized, however, this event had little to no effect for him. When he was at the Young’s he of 12, his grandmother, Jennie, died of a heart attack. When Jennie died, King Jr. was out without his parent’s permission and was so upset by the news, he attempted suicide by jumping out of a his two story house. He enrolled at Morehouse College in Atlanta at the very young age of 15. Throughout his time in High School, he drifted away from religion and did not care much about it, even though his family was devoted to God and worshiping. To his father’s dismay, he decided not to enter the ministry. However, in his junior year, Martin took a Bible study class and was able to renew his faith and began to look at a career in ministry.
Martin Luther King Jr. continued to study hard and earned a degree in sociology from Morehouse College and was able to attend Crozer Theological Seminary in Chester, Pennsylvania. Even as a seminarian he was able to excel and was valedictorian of class in 1951. He was also elected student body president. Going against his father again, in College he became a partner and began drinking beer, playing pool and was involved with a white women and went through some very hard times before he was able to cut it off. However, he was still able to earn a fellowship for graduate study. Fortunately, King Jr. had the privilege to study under Morehouse College President, Benjamin E. Mays. Mays had a huge impact on King’s spiritual development.
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