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Dr. King Cancels Demonstration for “Day of Penance” over Violence

July 25, 1962 - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (right) canceled plans to lead a mass demonstration in Albany, Ga., today and declared a day of penance for an outbreak of violence last night. Dr. King met today with operators and clientele of shops, pool rooms, and taverns along South Jackson Street, in the neighborhood known locally as Harlem, and sought to discourage further outbursts. Gov. S. Ernest Vandiver asserted today at a news conference in Atlanta that he would dispatch the state’s 12,000 National Guardsmen to Albany to maintain the peace if necessary. Mayor Asa D. Kelley Jr. said the Governor had made this offer on other occasions and that the city had no intention of accepting it unless the situation deteriorated. A jeering crowd of 2,000 Negroes blocked the street last night following the arrest of 39 Negroes and 1 white as they sought to march to City Hall. The Negroes threw bottles, bricks, and rocks toward more than 100 policemen and state highway patrolmen. One policeman and one trooper were injured, but not seriously.


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