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National Holidays

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Good Question: How Did MLK Jr.’s Birthday Become A Nat’l Holiday?

The third Monday of every January is one of ten national holidays that government employees get every year. Most children have no school and every state and federal employee receives a paid day off. The first official observation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a federal holiday was on January 20, 1986 – 18 years after the Civil Rights leader was shot. But David Chang, a professor of U.S. history at the University of Minnesota, says the idea for the holiday came just four days after the assassination in 1968.

01/20/2014

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