Atlanta Walmart Unveiled As History Marker for MLK Family

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is a global icon whose birthplace of Atlanta is a focal point of his mission for racial justice. In a new discovery, a Walmart in suburban Atlanta has been revealed to be a part of the civil rights leader’s familial history.

A  biography of the life of Dr. King led to uncovering the retail store location in Stockbridge as the grounds the activist’s ancestors sharecropped. As confirmed by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the biography’s author, Jonathan Eig, learned its history through his research on the late reverend.

The designation led to a historical marker being made at the store’s location. The marker was unveiled at a ceremony with Eig present and other Atlanta civic leaders and members of the King family, such as U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young and Dr. King’s nephew, Isaac Farris Jr.

The ancestors stem from Dr. King’s paternal side, as his namesake grew up sharecropping on that land before working to become a religious leader.

“It was in Atlanta that he began to remake himself and to remake history,” shared Eig as attendees honored King Sr. “That’s why this land that we stand on today should be recognized as a historical place.”

The patriarch of the King family, before the famous orator and activist was ever born, was a symbol of dedication and strength that became instilled in his son, having learned to read and write as a teenager before becoming the pastor of the famed Ebenezer Baptist Church. He then transitioned to Morehouse College, where his son followed in his educational and professional footsteps.

The life of the senior King signifies that the obstacles he overcame to fulfill his destiny were a catalyst for his offspring to make a change on a global scale.

“We call (Stockbridge) the ancestral home of the King family,” expressed City Councilman Alphonso Thomas, also in attendance at the ceremony. “This is the cradle of civil rights because … without Daddy King, what would the civil rights movement be?”

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