Just past noon on January 15, 1929, a son was born to the Reverend and Mrs. Martin Luther King in an upstairs bedroom of 501 Auburn Avenue, in Atlanta, Georgia. The couple named their first son after Rev. King, but he was simply called "M.L." by the family. During the next 12 years, this fine two story Victorian home is where "M.L." would live with his parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and their boarders.
The home is located in the residential section of "Sweet Auburn", the center of black Atlanta. Two blocks west of the home is Ebenezer Baptist Church, the pastorate of Martin's grandfather and father. It was in these surroundings of home, church and neighborhood that "M.L." experienced his childhood. Here, "M.L." learned about family and Christian love, segregation in the days of "Jim Crow" laws, diligence and tolerance. It was to Ebenezer Baptist Church that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would return in 1960. As co-pastor with his father, "Daddy King", Dr. King, Jr. would preach about love, equality, and non-violence.
The only guided tour is of Dr. King's Birth Home. All other facilities such as Ebenezer Baptist Church, Dr. King's Gravesite, Freedom Hall, Fire Station No. 6, and the Visitor Center are self-guided. Birth Home Tours are conducted daily by park rangers. Register for a tour upon arriving on site at the information desk located in the Visitor Center.
National Park Service Visitor Center - This is the place to stop for a brief orientation to the historic site, which buildings are open, how to sign up for a Birth Home tour, and where the nearest restroom is located. The Visitors Center features several exhibits relating to the Civil Rights Movement. Video programs are presented in the Visitor Center Theater on a continuing basis. Located at 450 Auburn Avenue, NE. (404) 331-5198 ext. 3017.
Birth Home - The Birth Home of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., may be visited only with a park ranger led tour. The tours are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Register for the tour at the National Park Service Visitor Center in person upon arrival to the park. Located at 501 Auburn Avenue, NE.
Ebenezer Baptist Church - Throughout its long history, Ebenezer Baptist Church has been a spiritual home to many citizens of the "Sweet Auburn" community. Its most famous member, Martin Luther King, Jr., was baptized as a child in the church. After giving a trial sermon to the congregation at Ebenezer at the age of 18 Martin was ordained as a minister. In 1960 Dr. King, Jr. became a co-pastor of Ebenezer with his father, "Daddy" King. He remained in that position until his death in 1968. As a final farewell to his spiritual home Dr. King, Jr.'s funeral was held in the church. Located at 407 Auburn Avenue, NE.
Fire Station No. 6 - Fire Station No. was buit in 1894 and served the "Sweet Auburn" community until 1991. Hear about the desegregation of the Atlanta Fire Department and view a 1927 American LaFrance fire engine at the museum. An Eastern National Bookstore is also located here. Located at 39 Boulevard, NE.
Freedom Hall (The King Center) - Established in 1968 by Coretta Scott King, The King Center is the official, living memorial dedicated to the advancement of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., leader of America’s greatest nonviolent movement for justice, equality and peace. Located at 449 Auburn Avenue, NE.
From Interstate 75/85 North or South take exit 248C Freedom Parkway. At the 1st traffic light, on Boulevard, turn right and at the next traffic light make a right turn onto John Wesley Dobbs Avenue. The visitor parking lot will be on the left. From Interstate 20 East or West, exit at Interstate 75/85 North and follow the directions mention above.