Martin Luther King Jr.
(1929 - 1968)
One year after assuming the pastorship of a Baptist church in Montgomery, Alabama, Martin Luther King Jr. was selected by the city’s black leaders in 1955 to head up the protest of Rosa Parks’ arrest. He became the founding president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957, emerging as the era’s most prominent civil rights activist; for leading an antisegregation march in 1963, he was imprisoned in a Birmingham jail. King was assassinated at the age of thirty-nine in 1968.