Finding Martin Luther King Jr. In America's Streets

A King's PlaceThere are nearly 1,000 streets named after Martin Luther King Jr. across the country, and each has its own unique story. The Root’s A King’s Place series explores streets throughout the nation that bear the civil rights icon’s name and tells the stories of the people who live there.

Martin Luther King Jr. is perhaps one of the most famous civil rights leaders in the United States. His name is synonymous with words like “nonviolence,” and “racial justice.” It’s easy to see Dr. King as a symbol for peace.

Somewhere along the way, King’s name became the punch line of the quintessential Chris Rock joke about Martin Luther King Jr. boulevards, and it stuck. But what’s the real story behind MLK-named streets?

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Watch the first episode of A King’s Place above to find out how Dr. King’s memory is memorialized in different cities. In the case of Harlem’s Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, more commonly known as 125th Street, is King’s legacy honored by the area’s gentrification?

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About the author

Ashley Velez

Senior Video Producer by day. Chicken connoisseur by night. Philly jawn always.

Jessica Moulite

Jessica Moulite is a Video Producer for The Root. She loves telling stories people often times can't tell themselves—and Oprah. She's probably watching Black 90s reruns.