Over 60 years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. spoke at Portland State’s Lincoln Hall (then Old Main), delivering a speech called “The Future of Integration” to an overflowing crowd.
The visit, on Nov. 8, 1961, was reported in the Portland State Vanguard, where Dr. King was quoted as saying: “We have come a long way toward making integration a reality, but we still have a long way to go. … If democracy is to live, segregation must die. Segregation is a cancer in the body of democracy that must be removed if the health of the nation is to survive.”
The story continued, “At 11 a.m. classes were dismissed so students could attend the convocation, and the auditorium was filled to overflowing. King received an enthusiastic reception from the students, who gave him a standing ovation at the conclusion of his speech.”
King’s trip to Portland was sponsored by the Urban League, and he spoke at Portland State as part of the College’s commemoration of the centennial of the Civil War.
Portland State MLK Day events for 2022
Portland State is hosting “Living the Legacy” series of virtual campus and community events to honor the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
- “The Transforming Power of the Civil Rights and Black Power Movement,” by Rev. Dr. LeRoy Haynes, Jr., Tuesday, Jan. 18 at 5:30 pm
- “Defining Abolition: Black People Liberate Themselves,” a virtual racial justice teach-in, Saturday, Jan. 22 from 10 am-3:30 pm.
- “In Conversation: Time Traveling Through Portland’s Black Life,” a PSU faculty panel, Tuesday, Jan. 26 at 5:30 pm
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