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Aug. 19, 1965: Martin Luther King Jr. answers questions during a news conference at Los Angeles City Hall. Mayor Samuel W. Yorty, right, listens with hands over his eyes. Yorty later criticized King's suggestion that Police Chief William H. Parker resign following LAPD actions during the 1965 riots in Los Angeles. This photo was published in the Aug. 20, 1965, LA Times.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Larry Sharkey / Los Angeles Times

July 9, 1960: Martin Luther King Jr., left, and the Rev. Maurice Dawkins, minister of the People's Independent Church of Christ, pose for a Times photographer. King was in Los Angeles for a civil rights rally and the Democratic National Convention.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jack Carrick / Los Angeles Times

June 18, 1961: The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. sits with California Gov. Edmund G. "Pat" Brown at the Sports Arena. Brown introduced King at the Freedom Rally. This photo was published the next morning in The Times. Photo credit on the back of the print has both Ken Dare and Bill Murphy -- both photographers must have covered the event.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bill Murphy/Ken Dare / Los Angeles Times

June 18, 1961: Interior of the Sports Arena with a crowd of 18,000 gathered to hear Martin Luther King Jr.'s speech during the Freedom Rally.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bill Murphy/Ken Dare / Los Angeles Times

June 18, 1961: An overflow crowd outside the Sports Arena was able to hear Martin Luther King, Jr. address the Freedom Rally after a sound system was hastily set up. Over 25,000 showed up, but only 18,000 were allowed into the Sports Arena. This photo was published in the June 19, 1961, Times.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bill Murphy / Los Angeles Times

May 31, 1964: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. speaks at a civil rights rally at the Memorial Coliseum. Listening from left are entertainer Walter O'Keefe, the Rev. Bryon C. Cole, the Rev. Joseph Francis and the Rev. John H. Burt. This photo was published in the June 1, 1964, Times.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Cal Montney / Los Angeles Times

Oct. 27, 1964: Martin Luther King Jr. pauses to chat with young girl during a tour of the Nickerson Gardens housing project. This photo was published in the Oct. 28, 1964, Times.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bruce Cox / Los Angeles Times

Feb. 24, 1965: Martin Luther King Jr. is welcomed by a crowd of admirers on his arrival at LAX. King was in Los Angeles for a series of speeches. This photo appeared in the Feb. 25 Times.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jack Carrick / Los Angeles Times

April. 27, 1965: Martin Luther King Jr. addresses students at UCLA.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: John Malmin / Los Angeles Times

Aug. 17, 1965: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at a podium after his arrival at Los Angeles International Airport. King arrived to try and help ease racial tensions following the Los Angeles riots. Backing him are Rev. H. H. Brookins at left, chairman of the United Civil Rights Committee; and Norman B. Houston, local NAACP president.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jack Carrick / Los Angeles Times

April 12, 1967: Martin Luther King Jr. during a press conference at the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles. King responded to criticism of his anti-Vietnam War activities. He told the media that "until we get rid of this [Vietnam] war," national problems of poverty, slums and urban blight cannot be solved.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jack Carrick / Los Angeles Times

April 7, 1968: A crowd of over 20,000 attends a memorial at the Coliseum for Martin Luther King Jr. following his assassination on April 4 in Memphis, Tenn.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Art Rogers / Los Angeles Times

Jan. 16, 1987: Coretta Scott King, lower left, gazes up at a bronze bust of her late husband Martin Luther King Jr., after it is unveiled in the Capitol in Washington. She called the statue a reminder "of our moral obligation to civil rights."

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bernie Boston / Los Angeles Times

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L.A. Times' images of Martin Luther King Jr.

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L.A. Times’ images of Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr., born Jan. 15, 1929, assassinated April 4, 1968, changed America forever with his leadership of the civil rights movement. His determination to bring change through nonviolent methods contributed to passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

King’s 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech is regarded as one of the finest in American history. In 1964 Dr. King won the Nobel Peace Prize.

For more on King, check out The Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change website.

During King’s 13 years in the civil rights movement, he often visited Southern California. This photo gallery consists of images taken by Los Angeles Times photographers.

1 Comment

  1. January 16, 2012, 4:28 am

    I like the photo with Yorty. Every person harbors a distinct emotion.

    By: TheLizMariani

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