What is Martin Luther King Day?
On January 15, 1929, Martin Luther King was born in Atlanta which is the largest city and capital of Georgia. As an African-American Baptist pastor and the leader of civil rights movement, he passed into history with his fight against racism and violence. Thanks to his struggle for equality, he won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964. In 1977, nine years after his assassination, he was granted an award named Presidental Medal of Freedom by former United States President Jimmy Carter.
Martin Luther King Day is an United States federal holiday which is celebrated on the third Monday of January. This date was specifically chosen to be a date close to Martin Luther King’s birthday. After his death, U.S. Representative John Conyers and U.S. Senator Edward Brooke introduced a bill in Congress about making his birthday a national holiday. A number of states and people in Congress resisted celebrating this day as a national holiday. After a lot of arguments, eventually, legislation of the holiday passed by the Congress. Then, it signed into law by former United States President Ronald Reagan in 1983.
However, the arguments and sensations about the holiday did not come to the conclusion. It took years for all the states to observe the holiday. On May 2, 2000, a new bill signed again to make his birthday an official state holiday by South Carolina Governor Jim Hodges. From that day on, Martin Luther King Day is the only memorial day and holiday which is in remembrance of an African-American leader. Also, it is one of the four memorial-federal holidays.
When is Martin Luther King Day?
Martin Luther King Day is celebrated on the third Monday of January to be close to his birthday. The next Martin Luther King is on January 21, 2019.
Dates for Martin Luther King Day from 2019 to 2025
- Martin Luther King Day 2020 - January 18, 2021 - Monday
- Martin Luther King Day 2021 - January 17, 2022 - Monday
- Martin Luther King Day 2022 - January 16, 2023 - Monday
- Martin Luther King Day 2023 - January 15, 2024 - Monday
- Martin Luther King Day 2024 - January 20, 2025 - Monday
- Martin Luther King Day 2025 - January 19, 2026 - Monday