The Urgent Necessities When You’re Stuck in One Place

I understand that I can have visitors twice a month—the second and fourth Sunday. However, I understand that everybody—white and colored—can have visitors this coming Sunday. I hope you can find some way to come down. I know it will be a terrible inconvenience in your condition, but I want to see you and the children very badly. Also ask Wyatt to come. There are some very urgent things that I will need to talk with him about. Pleas[e] bring the following books to me: Stride Toward Freedom, Paul Tillich’s Systematic Theology Vol 1 & 2, George Buttrick The Parables of Jesus, E. S. Jones Mahatma Gandhi, Horns and Halo, a Bible, a Dictionary and my reference dictionary called Increasing your Word Power. This book is an old book in a red cover and it may be in the den or upstairs in one of my bags. Also bring the following sermons from my file: “What is Man” “The Three Dimensions” “The Death of Evil” … [He listed fifteen more sermons.] Also bring a radio.

–from Martin Luther King, Jr. to Coretta King, 1960

Cited in Taylor Branch, Parting the Waters: America during the King Years, 1954-63


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