In this compilation WSB newsfilm clip from December 1964 and June 1966, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. comments on the continued segregation of the Episcopal-affiliated Lovett School in Atlanta, and Atlanta residents welcome King back to the city after his trip to Norway to accept the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize. Segments of the clip, especially the footage after King's arrival in Atlanta, are silent.
The clip begins with Dr. King and his wife, Coretta Scott King, walking up the steps of a building, presumably the Lovett School, with Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) minister Andrew Young. Later in the clip, Reverend Albert Dreisbach, a white priest and Reverend Robert Hunter, an African American priest are seen speaking to reporters. The men were both members of the Episcopal Society for Cultural and Racial Unity (ESCRU) and had engaged in a ninety-eight hour fast to protest the Lovett School's continued segregation. Next, Dr. King comments on the continued segregation of the private Episcopal school. June 4, 1966 is the most likely date of this event. Coretta Scott King and Andrew Young stand behind King as he speaks to reporters. King says he is unaware of legal moves to force the school's integration and believes it will take pressure on the trustees from the supporting Atlanta Episcopal Diocese as well as "people of goodwill all over the country" to effect change. He comments that many of the trustees are leading business people who accepted commercial integration after the lunch counter demonstrations in 1961. King believes it is "quite tragic" that these people will integrate their businesses but not their personal or religious lives.
The Lovett School was founded in 1926 and in 1957 became affiliated with the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta. In 1963, after public schools in Atlanta began integrating, the Lovett School denied admission to three African American children, two members of the Episcopal Diocese and Martin Luther King, III. In response, the Diocese disassociated itself with the school, and in the fall of 1963, Episcopalians from Atlanta and around the country picketed the school. In 1964, 1965, and 1966, members of ESCRU protested baccalaureate services for the school held in the Cathedral of St. Philip through demonstrations and fasting. In the fall of 1966, the school announced an admission policy that did not consider race or religion.
Interspersed with the comments about the Lovett School are images of Dr. King as he returns to Atlanta from Norway after receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in December 1964. Inside the airport, well-wishers hold a sign with the slogan "Happy landing Nobel Peace prize winner." Outside reporters interview Dr. King who is followed by Reverend Ralph D. Abernathy of the SCLC. The camera also focuses on a white minister in a clerical collar and a white man. Andrew Young and Coretta Scott King also stand near Dr. King.
Later Dr. King and others exit the airplane, and Dr. King holds one of his daughters while his son is nearby. People wave and clap as Dr. King exits the plane, and an African American policeman stands behind him. Inside the airport well-wishers shake hands with Dr. King while photographers take pictures. A white man and an African American woman walk behind King with a sign with the slogan "Bon Voyage man of peace."
On October 15, 1964, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was informed he was awarded the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize. He traveled to Oslo, Norway with his wife and friends in December 1964 to receive the prize, leaving Atlanta December 4 and returning December 18.
Title supplied by cataloger.
The Civil Rights Digital Library received support from a National Leadership Grant for Libraries awarded to the University of Georgia by the Institute of Museum and Library Services for digital conversion and description of the WSB-TV Newsfilm Collection.
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Cite as: WSB-TV newsfilm clip of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. commenting on the continued segregation of the Lovett School as well as his return from the Nobel Peace Prize trip, Atlanta, Georgia, 1964 December and 1966 June, WSB-TV newsfilm collection, reel 0957, 32:05/36:13, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, The University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Ga, as presented in the Digital Library of Georgia.