And the future President Richard M. Nixon came to pay his respects and held the widow’s hand.
The National Park Foundation announced Thursday that it had acquired and turned over to the National Park Service the home in Atlanta where King lived with his family.
The home, in Atlanta’s Vine City neighborhood, was purchased “via private philanthropy” from the estate of Coretta Scott King on Jan. 8 and handed over to the Park Service, the foundation said in a statement.
Last year, the foundation and the Park Service acquired the home in Atlanta where King was born, about three miles away.
“The National Park Service’s dedication to preserving historic properties is unmatched,” Bernice A. King, daughter of the slain civil rights leader, said in a statement on behalf of the King family.
“We are very pleased to have worked with the National Park Foundation to ensure that the family home that my siblings and I grew up in will be open and available to the public,” she said.
But the Park Service has been crippled by the partial federal government shutdown. Many sites are closed or unstaffed.
The King birthplace, on Auburn Avenue, had been closed.
It reopened temporarily on Jan. 19 thanks to a grant from the Delta Air Lines Foundation and revenue generated by Park Service recreation fees, the Park Service said. It is set to close again Feb. 3 should the shutdown continue that long.
King was living in the Vine City house, at 234 Sunset Ave., with his wife and four children when he was assassinated in Memphis on April 4, 1968.
It was a solid house with a two-car garage built in 1950. It had four bedrooms and four bathrooms, according to the Zillow real estate website.
The foundation said the house needs restoration before it can be opened to the public.
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