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Martin Luther King Jr. tapes discovered in Summerville home

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SUMMERVILLE, SC (WCSC) -

Tucked away in a Summerville home and nearly forgotten, audio tapes of Civil Rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. have been discovered.

They are a forty minute recording of a speech Dr. King gave in Charleston in the summer of 1967.

What's even more important, what we hear is a much different Civil Rights leader than seen in the history books.

Until recently, the box of audio tapes had been shuffled from closet to closet in Laura and Birdie Crosby's Summerville home. The tapes passed down by Laura's father, a reporter for The State newspaper. 

The Crosby's had never listened to the tapes.

"So with great trepidation we got the tapes out of the box," Laura said."Opened them carefully, put them on the machine."


"It was so clear it was like it was recorded yesterday," Birdie said.

"Said I came to Charleston to start a riot, been here a week organizing," King is heard saying in the recording."As much as I talk about love,  how could anybody accuse me of organizing a riot?"

The Detroit riots on July 23, 1967, were one week before Dr. King came to Charleston and he spoke against the violence in the audio recordings.

"And so I'm not gonna give you a motto of preach philosophy burn baby burn," King could be heard saying in the recording."I'm gonna say build baby build, organize baby organize."

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