On this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, explore these historic photos showing the iconic civil rights leader at both work and play, tracing his steps from the streets of Selma to the bus boycotts of Montgomery, the "I Have a Dream" speech in Washington, D.C., and the Nobel Peace prize ceremony in Norway.
Related: The 15 best quotes from Martin Luther King's 'I Have a Dream' speech
Related: 'I Have a Dream' and other major events in civil rights history
In this 1948 file photo, Martin Luther King, Jr., third from left, listens to a speaker during an assembly at Morehouse College in Atlanta. As a teenager in 1944, King worked on a tobacco farm in Connecticut. That experience influenced his decision to become a minister.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., right, accompanied by Rev. Ralph D. Abernathy, center, is booked by city police Lt. D.H. Lackey in Montgomery, Ala., on Feb. 23, 1956. The civil rights leaders are arrested on indictments turned by the Grand Jury in the bus boycott.
The Rev. Ralph Abernathy, left, shakes hands with the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., in Montgomery, Ala., March 22, 1956, as a big crowd of supporters cheer for King who had just been found guilty of leading the Montgomery bus boycott. Circuit Judge Eugene Carter suspended the fine of $500 pending an appeal. King's wife Coretta stands next to him.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. is welcomed with a kiss by his wife Coretta after leaving court in Montgomery, Ala., March 22, 1956. King was found guilty of conspiracy to boycott city buses in a campaign to desegregate the bus system, but a judge suspended his $500 fine pending appeal.
Two black ministers who were active in the long boycott of segregated buses in Montgomery, Ala., were among the first to ride after the Supreme Court's integration order went into effect, Dec. 21, 1956. At left, front seat, is the Rev. Ralph Abernathy, while at left in the second seat is the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Beside King is white minister, Rev. Glenn Smiley of New York, who said he was in Montgomery as an observer. Woman at right is unidentified.
Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Montgomery, Ala., reads the telegram sent to U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower by the Southern Negro Leaders Conference at a meeting in New Orleans, La., Feb. 14, 1957. The telegram says that a mass pilgrimage will be made to the nation's capitol if the president does not make a stand calling for enforcement of the Supreme Court's ruling outlawing segregation.
Pictured left to right at the Freedom Pilgrimage rally at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C., May 17, 1957, are: Roy Wilkins of New York, executive secretary of the NAACP; the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. of Montgomery, Ala.; and A. Philip Randolph of New York, president of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., of Montgomery, Alabama speaks at a mass demonstration before the Lincoln Memorial in Washington as civil rights leaders called on the government to put more teeth in the Supreme Court's desegregation decisions, May 17, 1957. King said both Democrats and Republicans have betrayed the cause of justice on civil rights questions.
Jackie Robinson, former Brooklyn Dodgers infielder, now a New York restaurant chain executive, is followed by Martin Luther King, Jr., leader of the Montgomery, Ala., bus boycott, as they walk in Howard University's academic procession, June 7, 1957. Both men received honorary doctorates of law at commencement exercises.
A makeup man puts a little powder on Martin Luther King's brow before a television program in Washington, Aug. 13, 1957. The president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference discussed the current racial situation on NBC's "Meet the Press" program.
Dr. Emil A. Naclerio, member of the surgical team that operated on the Rev. Martin Luther King, at King’s bedside in Harlem Hospital in New York on Sept. 21, 1958. Rev. King, stabbed by an African American woman as he appeared at a Harlem Department store on September 20, was still on the critical list after an operation.
Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., seen with his wife, Coretta, is at a Harlem hospital in New York City during a news conference on Sept. 30, 1958. The clergyman was stabbed near the heart by a woman who asked for his autograph in a Harlem department store on Sept. 20. The nurse in the background is Louise Stone.
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., of Alabama, waves to the nearly 500 people waiting outside Harlem hospital in New York City on Oct. 3, 1958. Dr. King was stabbed on Sept. 20.
American civil rights leader Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. removes his shoes before entering Mahatma Gandhi's shrine in New Delhi, India, Feb. 11, 1959.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. under arrest by Atlanta Police Captain R.E. Little, left rear, passes through a picket line in front of a downtown department store on Oct. 9, 1960. with King is another demonstration leader, Lonnie King and an unidentified woman. The integration leader was among the 48 African-Americans arrested following demonstrations at several department and variety stores protesting lunch counter segregation.
Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., integration leader, is escorted from the Atlanta, Ga. jail by two unidentified officers as he is taken to neighboring DeKalb county courthouse October 25, 1960, for a traffic hearing. The hearing was to show cause why a 12 month suspended sentence should not be revoked because of King's part in a sit-down demonstration in an Atlanta department store.
Martin Luther King speaks in Atlanta in 1960.
Martin Luther King speaks in Atlanta in 1960.
In this 1960 file photo, Martin Luther King Jr. speaks in Atlanta.
Freedom riders stand at ticket counter of the bus station in Montgomery, Alabama, May 24, 1961 as they purchase tickets to continue their ride through the south. At center is integration leader Rev. Martin Luther King.
The Rev. Martin Luther King, JR., whose Ebenezer Baptist church of Atlanta, Ga., was admitted to membership in the predominately white American Baptist Convention in session in Philadelphia on May 25, 1962, gestures as he said: “There probably is some arming taking place among Negroes in Birmingham” at the present time. Dr. King, who addressed the Baptist group, branded Birmingham as the most difficult big city in race relations in the United States.
Integration leader Martin Luther King, Jr., second from left, talks to a newsman on July 12, 1962, after he and Rev. Ralph Abernathy, second from right, walked out of jail after their fines were paid. Both said they did not know who paid the $178 fines. Far right is an unidentified city detective. Police arrested 32 African American demonstrators on July, 11, 1962 in Albany, Ga., when the group tried to march on City Hall.
Integration leader Martin Luther King Jr., Atlanta minister, speaking to a church filled to overflowing, in Albany, Georgia on July 22, 1962, about the legal fights ahead. King and other integration leaders and organizations fighting to break down segregation will start court action in a effort to upset a Federal injunction issued on banning protest demonstrations.
Dr. W.G. Anderson (white shirt, no tie) and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., (2nd from right, foreground) join in signing farewell to about 40 Chicagoans who left for home after their release from jail in Albany, Ga., August 31, 1962. They were among 75 persons, mostly clergymen, arrested for holding a prayer vigil in front of city hall in protest to segregation.
In this Dec. 17, 1962 file photo, Ambassador Adlai Stevenson, the U.S. delegate to the United Nations, shakes hands with Martin Luther King Jr., president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Atlanta, Ga., at the White House in Washington with President John F. Kennedy at right. The meeting occurred as Kennedy met with members of the American Negro Leadership Conference on Africa. Historians generally agree that Kennedy's phone call to Coretta Scott King expressing concern over her husband's arrest in October 1960, and Robert Kennedy's work behind the scenes to get King released, helped JFK win the White House that fall. King himself, while appreciative, wasn't as quick to credit the Kennedys alone with getting him out of jail, according to a previously unreleased portion of the interview with the civil rights leader days after Kennedy's election.
Rev. Ralph Abernathy, left, and Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. lead a column of demonstrators as they attempt to march on Birmingham, Ala., city hall April 12, 1963. Police intercepted the group short of their goal.
Rev. Ralph Abernathy, left, and Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., right are taken by a policeman as they led a line of demonstrators into the business section of Birmingham, Ala., on April 12, 1963.
A police officer holds the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. by his belt as he leads him to the paddy wagon, following arrest at an anti-segregation protest in downtown Birmingham, Ala., on April 13, 1963. An unidentified cameraman is documenting the scene.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., right, and his close associate, Rev. Ralph Abernathy, are released after 8 days from a jail in Birmingham, Ala., on April 20, 1963.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., attends a news conference in Birmingham, Ala. May 9, 1963.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, addresses marchers during his "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. Aug. 28, 1963.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. acknowledges the crowd at the Lincoln Memorial for his "I Have a Dream" speech during the March on Washington, D.C. Aug. 28, 1963.
In this Aug. 28, 1963 file photo, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, speaks to thousands during his "I Have a Dream" speech in front of the Lincoln Memorial for the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in Washington. Actor-singer Sammy Davis Jr. is at bottom right.
In this Aug. 28, 1963, black-and-white file photo Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, addresses marchers during his "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington.
In this Aug. 28, 1963, file photo Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., center left with arms raised, marches along Constitution Avenue with other civil rights protestors carrying placards, from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington.
In this Aug. 28, 1963, file photo shows civil rights demonstrators gather at the Washington Monument grounds before noon, before marching to the Lincoln Memorial, seen in the far background at right, where the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom will end with a speech by Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., now known as the "I Have A Dream" speech.
In this Aug. 28, 1963 file photo, President Kennedy stands with a group of leaders of the March on Washington at the White House in Washington. Immediately after the march, they discussed civil rights legislation that was finally inching through Congress. The leaders pressed Kennedy to strengthen the legislation; the president listed many obstacles. Some believe Kennedy preferred to wait until after the 1964 election to push the issue. Yet in his public speeches, he spoke more and more about justice for all. From second left are Whitney Young, National Urban League; Dr. Martin Luther King, Christian Leadership Conference; John Lewis, Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee, partially obscured; Rabbi Joachim Prinz, American Jewish Congress; Dr. Eugene P. Donnaly, National Council of Churches; A. Philip Randolph, AFL-CIO vice president; Kennedy; Walter Reuther, United Auto Workers; Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson, partially obscured, and Roy Wilkins, NAACP.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., tells a mass meeting in Birmingham, Alabama Sept. 17, 1963 that “words and actions” of Alabama Gov. George Wallace were to blame for the deaths of four African American girls in a church bombing. The meeting of about 1,200 persons voted to state a march on the state capitol in Montgomery to protest racial violence.
Wire copy from the New York General Desk of The Associated Press on the day of President John F. Kennedy's assassination.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., President of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, is heavily guarded as he speaks to an estimated crowd of 2,500 who braved freezing weather to attend an anti-segregation rally in downtown Hurt Park in Atlanta Sunday, Dec. 16, 1963. Police said the integration leader’s life had not been threatened, but the officers were a precautionary measure.
In this image from the LBJ Presidential Library, from left Martin Luther King Jr., President Lyndon B. Johnson, Whitney Young, James Farmer attend a meeting on Civil Rights in the Oval Office of the White House on Jan. 18, 1964, in Washington.
In this Jan. 18, 1964 file photo, U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, right, talks with civil rights leaders in his White House office in Washington, D.C. The black leaders, from left, are, Roy Wilkins, executive secretary of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP); James Farmer, national director of the Committee on Racial Equality; Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference; and Whitney Young, executive director of the Urban League.
The Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., left, of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and Malcolm X, head of a new group known as Muslim Mosque, Inc., smile for photographers March 26, 1964, at the Capitol. They shook hands after King announced plans for "direct action" protests if Southern senators filibuster against the civil rights bill.
Integration leader Dr. Martin Luther King looks at a glass door of his rented beach cottage in St. Augustine, Fla. that was shot into by someone unknown on June 5, 1964. King took time out from conferring with St. Augustine integration leaders to inspect the house, which no one was in at the time of the shooting.
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is accompanied by his wife, Coretta Scott King, as he appears at a press conference on the occasion of the release of his book "Why We Can't Wait," in New York , on June 8, 1964.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gives a young picket a pat on the back as a group of youngsters started to picket St. Augustine, Fla., June 10, 1964.
In this June 12, 1964 file photo, Andrew Young leans into a police car to talk to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in the back seat with a police dog as he is returned to jail in St. Augustine, Fla., after testifying before a grand jury investigating racial unrest in the city.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. mops perpiration from his neck at a news conference in which he announced future plans for the integration move in St. Augustine, Fla., June 17, 1964. King remarked, "It's hotter in more ways than one in St. Augustine."
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. reacts in St. Augustine, Fla., after learning that the senate passsed the civil rights bill, June 19, 1964.
The Rev. Martin Luther King addresses a crowd estimated at 70,000 at a civil rights rally in Chicago’s Soldier Fielld June 21, 1964. King told the rally that congressional approval of civil rights legislation heralds “The dawn of a new hope for the Negro.”
U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson reaches to shake hands with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. after presenting the civil rights leader with one of the 72 pens used to sign the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in Washington, D.C., on July 2, 1964. Surrounding the president, from left, are, Rep. Roland Libonati, D-Ill., Rep. Peter Rodino, D-N.J., Rev. King, Emanuel Celler, D-N.Y., and behind Celler is Whitney Young, executive director of the National Urban League.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., right, chats with Greenwood, Mississippi African Americans on their front porch on July 21, 1964, during his door-to-door campaign, telling all them to register to vote and support his Mississippi Freedom Democratic party.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. right, and Charles Evers, Miss. NAACP field secretary, enjoy laugh during fund raising time at mass rally in Jackson, Mississippi on July 22, 1964. King later told several thousand persons there are no Communists in his movement.
In his photo released by the Vatican, Pope Paul VI poses at the Vatican with American civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., during a private audience, Sept. 18, 1964. With the pontiff and King are Msgr. Paolo Marcinkus of Chicago, who acted as interpreter, and with King is his aide, Dr. Ralph Abernathy, right.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., delivers his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech in the auditorium of Oslo University in Norway on Dec. 10, 1964. King, the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace prize, is recognized for his leadership in the American civil rights movement and for advocating non violence.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1964.
Registrar Carl Golson shakes a finger at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., during meeting at the courthouse in Hayneyville, Alabama March 1, 1965. King inquired about voter registration procedures but Golson told him that if he was not a prospective voter in Lowndes county, “It’s none of your business.” King visited two nearby countries after leading a voter registration drive in Selma.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. leads a protest march to the courthouse in Montgomery, Ala., on March 17, 1965. From left are Ralph Abernathy, James Forman, Martin Luther King Jr., Rev. S.L. Douglas and John Lewis.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., uses a megaphone to address demonstrators assembled at the courthouse in Montgomery, Alabama, March 17, 1965 after a meeting with Sheriff Mac Butler left and other public officials.
Martin Luther King leads a march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, March 1965.
Dr. Martin Luther King, leading a 54-mile, five-day march of civil rights demonstrators from Selma, Alabama, to the state Capitol at Montgomery, eases on his shoe after a roadside rest stop during second day of march on March 22, 1965 in Selma, Alabama. The march is in protest of Alabama voting laws.
The Rev. Martin Luther King, integration leader, addresses a crowd on a street in Lakeview, New York May 12, 1965. The Nobel Prize winner arrived in the day from Atlanta, Ga., for a whirlwind tour of Nassau County to advance the cause of African Americans in that area.
During a visit to a pool hall, February 18, 1966, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., campaigning in Chicago, IL. for better living conditions for African Americans, demonstrates some proficiency with a cue.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., right, who is campaigning to clean up slum areas in Chicago, Ill., helps roll a barrel of ashes at a building on the west side of the city, Feb. 23, 1966. Looking at left is the Rev. Owen Ateer of St. Agatha Catholic Church. King is the head of the Southern Leadership Conference, a civil rights organization.
Little six year old Robin Arrington, daughter of a Miami Southern Christian Leadership Conference attorney, leans on Dr. Martin Luther King's shoulder as Dr. King holds a press conference, April 11, 1966, in Miami, Fl. Dr. King arrived in Miami for a meeting to establish a local chapter of his S.C.L.C.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. walks between seven-year-old Eva Gracelemon, left, and 10-year-old Aritha Willis as he escorts black school children to formerly all-white schools in Grenada, Miss., Tuesday morning, Sept. 20, 1966. Violence erupted at the school last Monday when the schools were integrated.
Civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, victim of an assassin's bullet in Memphis Thursday Apr. 3, 1968, presented this study in that city earlier this week. Scene was Wednesday as King and his aides were being served papers by U.S. Marshal. A federal restraining order prohibited King from leading any mass marches. Violence erupted in Memphis last week when King headed a march in the city.
Aerial view of Ebenezer Baptist Church where people came in great numbers to pay respects to a fallen leader, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., April 8, 1968 in Atlanta, Ga.
Vice President Hubert Humphrey speaks to Mrs.Coretta King Jr, before funeral services for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr in Atlanta on April 9, 1968. At left is Dr. King’s brother, the Rev. A. D. King, at center is Mrs. King’s younger daughter, Bernice, 5. The civil rights leader was standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel when he was killed by a rifle bullet on April 4, 1968. James Earl Ray pleaded guilty to the killing and was sentenced to 99 years in prison. He died in prison in 1998.
Charles Arnold touches up the lettering which was stenciled on the crypt of Dr. Martin Luther King in Atlanta on April 8, 1968.