Samuel Jackson Held MLK’s Father Hostage In College & The Details Are Wild

Posted On : July 8, 2018

Actor, Samuel Jackson, once did something to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s father that will probably leave many shocked and many others impressed by his actions. It all went down in 1969, the same year that Jackson enrolled in the infamous Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA.

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On the hills of MLK Jr.’s assassination in 1968, Jackson, along with some of his fellow Morehouse students, became outraged, by not only Dr. King’s assassination, but also with the complacency of life and injustices for minorities in America overall. So they did what they knew how to do at that time and they took action in a MAJOR way, which costs Samuel Jackson his college enrollment.

Why Jackson Held MLK’S Dad Hostage

Martin Luther King Sr.
Martin Luther King Sr.

Martin Luther King. Sr was on the Board of Trustees at Morehouse College during the time Jackson was attending the school. After MLK Jr.’s assassination, Jackson, like many other African Americans during that era, began to become more radicalized in his way of dealing with injustices. So when Jackson and a other Morehouse students determined they needed a better educational curriculum and more minorities on the school’s governing body, they decided to protest. How so? By LOCKING THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES IN A MOREHOUSE ADMINISTRATION BUILDING (MARTIN LUTHER KING, SR. INCLUDED) FOR TWO WHOLE DAYS UNTIL THEY GOT RESULTS. And guess what? It worked.

After the protest, Morehouse actually listened to Samuel Jackson and the other students. The school improved their curriculum and included more African Americans in their governing body. The only problem was that Jackson was suspended from Morehouse for two years for being one of the leaders of that protest and locking the members in the building. He was convicted of unlawful confinement, which is a second degree felony. Some of the other students who were with him didn’t get suspended, nor charged though.


After Dr. King Jr. was assassinated in 1968, his body was brought to lie in state at Spelman College, predominantly African American all-female college that sits adjacent to Morehouse. Samuel Jackson was actually an usher at Dr. King’s funeral. Shortly after the funeral, Jackson flew to Memphis to join an equal rights protest march and that’s where he says he became more pro-active and radicalized. “I was angry about the assassination, but I wasn’t shocked by it. I knew that change was going to take something different – not sit-ins, not peaceful coexistence,” Jackson stated that in a Parade Magazine interview regarding his reaction to MLK, Jr.’s death. In other words, he got tired of holding hands and simply singing for justice, he wanted more results.

samuel jackson young
Samuel Jackson’s throwback yearbook photo

Jackson begin to find ways to fight back for equal rights and soon after that, he not only formed that Morehouse lockdown/protest, he also caught the attention of the FBI (which scared the daylights out of his beloved Mother) after joining forces with others in the Black Power movement like Stokely Carmichael, H. Rap Brown:

“I was in that radical faction,” Jackson told Parade. “We were buying guns, getting ready for armed struggle. ‘All of a sudden,’ he said proudly, ‘I felt I had a voice. I was somebody. I could make a difference. ‘But then one day,’ he added quietly, ‘my mom showed up and put me on a plane to L.A. She said, ‘Do not come back to Atlanta.’ The FBI had been to the house and told her that if I didn’t get out of Atlanta, there was a good possibility I’d be dead within a year. She freaked out.’”

Two years after the Morehouse protest, Jackson was able to return to Morehouse College and re-enroll as a drama major and he graduated in 1972. He said “I decided that theater would now be my politics. It could engage people and affect the way they think. It might even change some minds.”

Now that we know how proactive Samuel Jackson was as a young man, it all makes sense with who we know him to be as a man now. He’s is a refreshing voice in a world of oftentimes fake, re-programmed, politically correct, unrealistic Hollywood actors. Jackson’s not an entertainer who will conform just to make his naysayers comfortable, and we can’t do anything but respect that.