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    Martin Luther King Jr. Signed Copy of "An Appeal to the Honorable John F. Kennedy President of the United States." Fifty-nine pages, 8.5" x 11", Atlanta, May 17, 1962. Dr. King presented the appeal to President John F. Kennedy, on the 100th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, in hopes that the United States would return to the principles contained in Lincoln's famous order and abolish the segregation laws that had prevailed over the (mostly) Southern states since the end of the Civil War. Signed and inscribed by King, in blue ink, on the front cover. Toned edges; 1.5" tear at the upper edge of the first ten pages,

    While being guided on a tour of the White House by President John F. Kennedy in October 1961, King passed by the Lincoln Bedroom. Contained with the very room in which it had been signed was a framed copy of the Emancipation Proclamation. King seized the moment. He proposed the issue of a "second" Emancipation Proclamation - Kennedy himself could eliminate segregation through an executive order and he could do it on the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Antietam, September 17. Kennedy, intrigued by the idea, asked King to draft a proposal. The fruit of his labor was this appeal.

    Sadly, the idea never came to fruition. Kennedy realized it would be political suicide if he wished to serve a second term. After two great anniversaries passed with no radical changes, King realized that Kennedy could not be counted on and he would need to take matters into his own hands. Without the knowledge of his family and friends, King went to Alabama to help with the struggle. After Kennedy's assassination, the new president, Lyndon B. Johnson, inspired by King's actions in Selma, proposed the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2013
    17th-18th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 911

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    We had a wonderful time in New York during the October 2013 Historical Manuscripts auction that featured my mother’s papers collected during her tenure as Martin Luther King, Jr.’s secretary. In fact, the entire experience from beginning to end has been a pleasure.
    Howard Ballou,
    Brandon, MS
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