Facts about Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Find out the dates, history and background of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday.

To mark the day, here are 6 interesting facts about Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Martin Luther King Jr. was born Michael King Jr. His father, who was born Michael King, changed his name after the death of his father-in-law in 1931 adopting the name Martin Luther King in honor of the German Protestant religious leader Martin Luther. Michael Jr. later took the name, too. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Facts

Martin Luther King Jr. was arrested 30 times Martin Luther King Jr. Day Facts

Martin Luther King Jr. is one of two Americans whose birthday is celebrated as a national holiday; the other is George Washington, whose birthday is commonly celebrated as Presidents' Day. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Facts

Martin Luther King, Jr Day is the only federal holiday considered a national day of service. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Facts

Legislation to create a national holiday in honor of King first was introduced four days after his assassination in 1968, but Congress didn't act on the bill. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Facts

The first state bill recognizing a holiday for King was signed into law in 1973 in Illinois. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Facts
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