||Accessing the Collection
|| Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection: Frequently Asked Questions
What is the history of the Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection?
The Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection was purchased by a group of prominent Atlantans in June 2006 on behalf of King’s alma mater, Morehouse College. As the sole academic library of Morehouse College, the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc., was designated as archival custodian. Learn more about the Woodruff Library’s custodial role at: http://www.auctr.edu/mlkcollection/custodian.asp.
What materials are included in the collection?
The Morehouse King Collection includes typed and handwritten manuscripts, correspondence, index cards and office files. In addition, there are more than 1,100 books from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s personal library with his handwritten notes throughout. More information about items in the collection is available at: http://www.auctr.edu/mlkcollection/collection-overview.asp.
The collection has been digitized and can be viewed only on a computer in the Archives Research Center of the AUC Robert W. Woodruff Library.
Is there a guide to the Morehouse King Collection papers?
Yes. The “guide”, or finding aid, can be viewed at: www.auctr.edu/mlk-public/public.asp. The finding aid is searchable using key words or phrases.
We recommend that you review the Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection Finding Aid to gauge the availability and relevance of included items before visiting the Woodruff Library Archives Research Center.
How do I find books in the collection?
Books in the collection can be located in the Library’s online catalog, WOODI (www.auctr.edu). Books located only in the Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection are accessible with Archives Research Center staff approval from 1:00-5:00 pm, Monday through Friday.
Access to some of the Morehouse King Collection books has been restricted due to their fragile condition. Archives Research Center staff will be able to tell you whether those same titles are available in other Woodruff Library collections or accessible in digital format through the King Papers Project at Stanford University.
Where is the Archives Research Center located?
The Archives Research Center is on the upper level of the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, 111 James P. Brawley Drive, Atlanta, GA 30314
Can anyone use the Morehouse King Collection?
Yes. Anyone who agrees to the reference policies and procedures of the Archives can use the King Collection.
When is the collection available for research?
The Morehouse King Collection can be accessed during the Archives’ hours of operation:
Monday-Thursday, 1 PM-7 PM
Friday, 1 PM-5 PM
Saturday, NOON-5 PM
Closed on Sunday
Hours of operation are subject to change, so researchers should consult the Woodruff Library web site (www.auctr.edu) or call the Archives Research Center (404-978-2052) for scheduled hours.
Do I need an appointment to use the Morehouse King Collection?
Researchers are encouraged to make an appointment. After scheduled appointments have been accommodated, walk-in visitors will be given access on a first-come, first-served basis.
Researchers visiting by appointment will be granted a maximum of 90 minutes of access to be requested and given in 30-minute slots; walk-in visitors will be limited to 30 minutes of research time. If no other researchers are waiting, additional access may be granted.
How do I make an appointment?
Call 404-978-2052 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to make an appointment to research the collection.
Are there special policies and procedures for accessing the Morehouse King Collection?
Yes. Researchers must read and sign an agreement outlining Morehouse King Collection policy and procedures before being granted research access. View and download the policy and procedures at: Access Policy.
Can I make copies from the collection?
No. Downloads, photocopies and photographs of any collection materials are strictly prohibited.
How do I obtain permission to publish from the Morehouse King Collection?
Requests for permission to publish any of Dr. King’s copyrighted speeches, sermons, books, or other writings, in whole or in part, shall be addressed to:
Intellectual Properties Management, Inc.
449 Auburn Ave.
Atlanta, GA 30312
How do I cite materials from the collection?
Materials should be cited as: The Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection at the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc. Researchers are encouraged to furnish the Archives with two (2) copies of any publication that cites materials from the Collection.
COMMON REFERENCE QUESTIONS
These questions are designed to direct you to popular items in the Morehouse King Collection and to illustrate how to find certain types of documents.
Can I see the original draft of “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”?
Unfortunately, the original draft version has not survived. The collection does have a printed version with detailed annotations and corrections written in Dr. King’s own hand. It can be found in Series 2: Writings by Martin Luther King, Jr.
Where is Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech delivered at the March on Washington?
There is no exact draft of this speech, as much of it was extemporaneous. Nevertheless, the collection does include an early draft of the speech entitled “Normalcy Never Again”. It was typed by one of Dr. King’s assistants, but has one page of handwritten prose by MLK. Only a small portion of this version found its way into the speech delivered at the March on Washington. The collection also contains several early printed versions of “I Have a Dream”. All are located in Series 2: Writings by Martin Luther King, Jr.
Where can I find documents about the Montgomery Bus Boycott?
Series 7: Montgomery Improvement Association Organizational Records contains items related to the boycott.
Where are the SCLC files?
These files are still being processed and are currently unavailable.
Where is the “Lovett School Letter”?
It is in Subseries 1.1.: Correspondence: General L-R under “McDowell, James R.”, the person who sent it.
How do I find information about CORE?
Please search under “Congress of Racial Equality”.
Are there any photographs of Dr. King?
There are very few photographs in the collection. The Photographs series is not available at this time.
My relative wrote to Dr. King. Do you have her letter?
We have many letters to Dr. King from all over the world. Search the finding aid for your relative’s name, or browse the “Correspondence” series.