On this dayOct 30, 1967
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rev. Ralph Abernathy Jailed in Birmingham
On October 30, 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rev. Ralph Abernathy were arrested and forced to begin serving sentences in Birmingham jail because they led peaceful protests against unconstitutional bans on race mixing in Birmingham in 1963. In April 1963, a series of civil rights protests occurred in Birmingham, Alabama, to challenge segregation in Birmingham's public accommodations. Pro-segregation white residents and local police, led by the city's notorious public safety commissioner, Bull Connor, responded to the protests with violence and legal suppression.
On April 10, 1963, a state judge granted city officials an injunction banning all anti-segregation protest activity in the city of Birmingham. Dr. King and Rev. Abernathy chose to lead a march in defiance of the injunction and were arrested on April 12, 1963. Dr. King spent eight days in jail before being released on bail, and during that time wrote his famed “Letter from Birmingham Jail."
Dr. King and Rev. Abernathy were still prosecuted after posting bail, and on April 26, 1963, they were convicted of contempt of court. Dr. King and Rev. Abernathy unsuccessfully appealed and, on October 30, 1967, returned to Birmingham to each serve five-day jail sentences. Dozens of supporters protested outside of Birmingham's jail for the duration of their incarceration.