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How the Baton Rouge bus boycott inspired Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Free Ride System, Baton Rouge 1953
Ernest Richie, Rembrandt Studios
LSU Libraries
Free Ride System, Baton Rouge 1953

This episode of Louisiana Considered aired on Monday, Jan. 16, 2023. Here's what it featured:

Today is Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Day, a time to remember the life and legacy of the civil rights icon. While King is largely remembered for his role in multiple de-segregation movements, what many don’t know is that many of his ideas and frameworks were largely inspired by the Baton Rouge Bus Boycott of 1953.

Back in 2010, the LSU Libraries’ T. Harry Williams Center created an oral history podcast, and in one episode, they explored the relationship between Baton Rouge activists and Dr. King. Today, we listen to that episode to hear first-person accounts from those who met with King throughout the Civil Rights movement. Then, Jennifer Abraham Cramer, Director, T. Harry Williams Center for Oral History and podcast host, tells us why this oral history project holds up, twelve years after its release.

Today’s episode of Louisiana Considered was hosted by Karen Henderson. Our managing producer is Alana Schreiber and our digital editor is Katelyn Umholtz. Our engineers are Garrett Pittman and Aubry Procell.

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Karen Henderson is an award-winning journalist whose stories have aired nationally on NPR.
Alana Schreiber is the managing producer for the live daily news program, Louisiana Considered. She comes to WRKF from KUNC in Northern Colorado, where she worked as a radio producer for the daily news magazine, Colorado Edition. She has previously interned for Minnesota Public Radio in St. Paul and The Documentary Group in New York City.