Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. visited Madison twice in the '60s - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. visited Madison twice in the '60s

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Wisconsin Union Directorate Forum Committee member Jim Ehrman with Martin Luther King, Jr. after King’s lecture at the University of Wisconsin–Madison on March 30, 1962. Wisconsin Union photo Wisconsin Union Directorate Forum Committee member Jim Ehrman with Martin Luther King, Jr. after King’s lecture at the University of Wisconsin–Madison on March 30, 1962. Wisconsin Union photo

MADISON (WKOW) -- As Madison prepares to observe Martin Luther King Jr. day on Monday, many still remember the civil rights' leader's visit in 1965.

King made two visits to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, according to UW News. Read the post HERE

King addressed a full house at the Stock Pavilion on Nov. 23, 1965. By that time, King had already earned the Nobel Peace Prize for leading the fight against racial inequality through nonviolent resistance.

Student committee members of the Wisconsin Union Directorate lobbied to bring King to campus, and Paul Mennes extended the invitation. According to a 2006 article in the Badger Herald, Mennes also served as King’s personal campus tour guide. “(King) was one of those people who, if he met 10 people in two minutes, he would remember everyone’s name and everything about them,” Mennes said.

A crowd of nearly 3,000 — almost exclusively students — gathered in the Stock Pavilion to see King. He gave a speech titled “The Future of Integration,” in which he defined what came to be known in the civil rights movement as a “period of constructive integration.”

The speech discussed the importance of nonviolent protests, which had been a staple of the movement. “The nonviolent resistors can summarize their message in the following simple terms,” he said. “We will take direct action against injustice without waiting for other agencies to act … We will always be willing to talk and seek fair compromise, but we are ready to suffer when necessary and even risk our lives to become witnesses to the truth as we see it.”

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