A question arises every year in Bridgeport. Did Martin Luther King visit Bridgeport?
On at least four occasions, Reverend Martin Luther King spoke to crowds in Bridgeport. The first time was in 1961 when the Reverend King was invited by the University of Bridgeport to give a lecture at Klein Auditorium.
More than 2,700 people attended the lecture.
In 1962, Reverend King spoke at Central High School in a program co-sponsored by the NAACP and the Interdenominational and Ministerial Alliance of Greater Bridgeport.
In early 1964, just months after President Kennedy’s assassination, King spoke again to a capacity crowd at Klein Auditorium.
King said, “I think that the greatest tribute Americans can pay to the memory of John F. Kennedy is to see the civil rights bill is passed just as Kennedy presented it.”
The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King’s last visit was on March 13, 1966. He spoke to a large and racially mixed crowd at Klein Auditorium.
When the civil rights leader was assassinated in 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee, a local memorial service was held at Klein Auditorium. The audience overflowed out into the street.