Interview with Rev. Andrew Young


Rev. Andrew Young:

the t- when we got to Montgomery, ah, John Door came to me and said, "Look, we understand that therets a plot on martin Luther King's life," ah, and said, "we can't search every house in Montgomery. We'd like for you to drive him from the city limits down to the capitol. Not let him walk through this entire town." Well, we normally didn't discuss things like that with Martin. And we just told him we thought that he needed to ride and didn't tell him the reasons. And he said, "No." He wanted to walk. He was going to walk in with everybody else. And so finally then we told him what the situation was, and he said that he didn't care. He still wanted to walk. You know. And ah, so he had a… I mean Martin always wore the good preacher blue suit. And um, I… I figured since we couldn't stop him from marching we just had to kind of believe that it was true when white folks said we all look alike. So everybody that was about Martin's size and had on a blue suit I put in the front of the line with him. Ah, and… and of course I had on my blue suit. Ah, and we all just lined up. But there were some very important people who felt as though they were being pushed back. Ah, but all of the preacher's loved the chance to get up… to get up front in the front line With Martin Luther King, but I don't think to this day most of them know why they were up there.** But it, I think when we finally got through, I mean that created a kind of a tension where you're looking around and you never know where a bullet's coming from, you know, walking all through town for an hour or so. And when you finally got downtown to the state capitol and past the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church, ah, and you could see the capitol and you knew sort of made it, ah, I think then I just… ah, I really then felt you know, filled with jo at… ah, and his ah, his sermon was different, you know, his speech was different from the March on Washington. But I thought just as good, though he didn't get the kind of publicity. I mean it wasn't new anymore. In the March on Washington people were shocked that here was such a great orator. Ah, by Selma they'd come to expect him to say brilliant things, and I think he did.

[unintelligible background conversation]