April 5, 1968: Martin Luther King Jr. killed

On the evening of April 4, 1968, civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated on the balcony of a Memphis hotel. He was visiting the city to lead a protest march in support of local sanitation workers.

The next day, The Herald published two articles: One that detailed the events of King’s death and the Attorney General’s hope to find his murderer, another that relayed President Lyndon B. Johnson’s proclamation of the following Sunday as a day of mourning. Read excerpts from both front-page stories below:

Clark Hopeful of Finding Slayer

“Before King’s bronze and copper casket was closed for the journey home, his body was on view at the R. S. Lewis and Sons funeral home in Memphis.

About 200 Negroes filed past the coffin, and most of them were visibly shaken.

One elderly woman walked up to the casket, shaking her head from side to side.

‘I didn’t know you,’ she whispered, ‘but I loved you.”

Proclamation Sunday Day of Mourning

“Johnson, addressing the nation on radio and television ‘in this hour of national need,’ vowed that ‘American shall not be ruled by the bullet.’

The President met with top Negro and government leaders earlier.

He had hastily arranged the meeting after Negroes took to the streets in more than a dozen big city ghettos, smashing windows, looting and hurling bricks.

In designating Sunday a national day of mourning, Johnson urged the nation to pray for an end to racial hatred.

In our churches, in our homes, in our private hearts, let us resolve before God to stand against the divisiveness in our country and all its consequences,’ the President said.”

Read through the April 5, 1968 edition in our collection of historical front pages.

More in Local News

Spring start set for big Everett apartment complex

The building will be eight stories tall, with seven of those visible from Broadway.

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s top images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

Clues in recovered backpack help identify robbery suspect

Police find a ticket with the man’s name on it after an attempted shoplifting at a Safeway.

Police presence returns to Edmonds School District

Jacob Hubby is set to walk the halls of Meadowdale High School as a school resource officer.

County budget takes effect without Somers’ signature

The council passed its version with unanimous support and could have overridden an executive veto.

Separate Everett fires send man to hospital, damage boat

The man was hospitalized for smoke inhalation from the early morning fire.

Suspected escort charged with felony assault, robbery

She allegedly told police she shot the man in the head “because he was performing (a sex act) wrong.”

Mukilteo crabber missing; his boat was found at Hat Island

Frank Urbick set out Thursday morning but did not return.

Police looking for leads in case of missing Snohomish man

Henry John Groeneveld, 63, was last seen on Monday, when he said something about going to “the river.”

Most Read