A Black-and-White Shot of Martin Luther King Jr. in a Suit Waving a Hand

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This year marks the 54 years since Martin Luther King Jr. traveled to Tennessee to support 1,300 sanitation workers in their quest for equal rights. It wasn't his first stop, but that fateful evening on April 4, 1968, at exactly 6:05 p.m., it would prove to be his last.

Today, Kennedys and King take you further into the events of the day of this brave leader's assassination.

A Death Prompted by Death

MLK's death wasn't directly prompted by death; it was more of a butterfly effect—a melting pot that had gone unwatched for quite a while. Let us explain.

  • February 1, 1968: A garbage truck malfunctions, killing two sanitation workers.
  • February 12, 1968: After several attempts at negotiating better working conditions for Black sanitation workers, a strike is announced, picket lines are erected, and signs are held to protest poor working conditions for Tennessee's sanitation workers.
  • April 3, 1968: King and his aides arrive in Memphis to support the protest.
  • April 4, 1968: King falls after someone fires a single shot from a high-powered rifle.

MLK quote

The Reason Behind Staying at the Lorraine Motel

When MLK checked into Room 306 at the Lorraine Motel on April 3, 1968, he had no idea it would become a crime scene the next day. His reasons for staying at the motel were simple: it was one of those rare places that hosted African American guests.

A few hours after checking into the motel, King gave his last public speech at Mason Temple Church. Famously titled "I’ve Been to the Mountaintop,” a slightly under-the-weather MLK would end up talking about his mortality, entirely unaware of his impending demise.

The Details of the Martin Luther King Jr. Assassination

We all know that MLK was standing on the balcony of his room when he was shot. But why was he there? There are more what-ifs in his assassination than any other political assassinations of the 1960s:

  • What if MLK hadn’t been invited to have dinner with Reverend Samuel Billy Kyles at his home?
  • What if he hadn’t emerged on the balcony of his room?
  • What if Andrew Young hadn’t asked him to get his coat?
  • What if the fatal shot had landed on his shoulder instead of his face?

The activist and leader died an hour after a single rifle shot shattered his jaw and spinal column and severed his spinal cord.

Discover the Aftermath on Kennedys and King

Do you want to know what happened after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.? Explore the manhunt that followed his demise and the documents revealed since the events of that fateful day in April 1968 on Kennedys and King.

Read our articles, blogs, and archives to learn the truth behind the political murders of the 1960s, particularly those of Malcolm X, Robert F. Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, and Martin Luther King Jr.

Reach out to know how you can contribute to our cause.


A Toy Recreation of the Parade from the John F. Kennedy Assassination

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The Warren Commission was set up to investigate the deaths of President John F. Kennedy and his alleged killer, Lee Harvey Oswald. Chaired by US Chief Justice Earl Warren, the Commission’s results experienced heavy criticism as soon as they became public.

In today’s Kennedys and King blog, we’ll go over some details behind the details of its 888-page report.

1. Earl Warren’s Personal Stake in the Investigation

While committees have previously returned with more credible results, personal affairs notwithstanding, Earl Warren’s wasn’t one of them. The US Chief Justice was a close friend of the Kennedy family. His sentiments shouldn’t have impeded the investigation, but records show otherwise.

From limiting access to Kennedy’s autopsy photos to barring the Commission from interviewing Jackie Kennedy, there’s no shortage of instances where he fell short of his duty, which might’ve affected the warren commission results.

2. The Super-Secret Fidel Castro Interview

The idea that Fidel Castro might’ve killed Kennedy is just that, an idea. However, it’s a conspiracy theory that the Commission thought fit to look into.

During a three-hour off-the-record interview, which was so lowkey it wasn’t even revealed to key Warren Commission members, Castro denied the charges against him repeatedly, just like he did in public.

Unfortunately, we’ll never see a transcript of this interview as no one took notes during the proceedings, and the people who knew are long gone.

Fidel Castro

3. The Gerald Ford Leaks

Gerald Ford was one of the congressmen on the Warren Commission, but he was also an FBI informant. He constantly leaked information about their progress to the Bureau’s Director, J. Edgar Hoover.

What’s more interesting is that this reveal wasn’t common knowledge until 2006, months after Ford’s death, when a cache of declassified documents suggested Ford as the one to approach the FBI with this information.

4. The FBI-CIA Interference

The FBI and CIA might’ve interfered with the investigation by telling lies and destroying evidence that could’ve changed the report drastically. Their transgressions included:

  • Not admitting to surveilling Oswald in the days leading up to the investigation.
  • Destroying a note left by Oswald threatening an FBI agent before the assassination.
  • Removing the FBI agent’s name from the address book transcript.
  • Lying about their activities in the days leading up to the assassination.

5. The Motiveless Murder

You’d think a president’s murder would have a rhyme and reason to it, but the Commission thought otherwise. While they recreated the event and proposed the assassin, they didn’t provide a plausible motive for the President’s assassination.

The Warren Commission experienced collusion, breach of privacy, and conflict of interest, among other things. There were enough of them to alter the course of the investigation.

Visit our website if you’re interested in the findings of the Warren Commission. Check out all the analyses on a report that concealed the truth behind the JFK assassination, learn important facts about Lee Harvey Oswald, and show your support through text and audio contributions.

Get in touch for further assistance.

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