Letters from Prison

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Martin Luther King Jr. looks out the window of his cell at the Birmingham City Jail. The photo was taken by the Rev. Wyatt Tee Walker in October 1967, when both leaders served time in the Jefferson County Jail in Birmingham. (UPI)

When she saw many references to MLK’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” on social media recently,  Anne K. Knafl, Bibliographer for Religion, Philosophy, and Jewish Studies at the University of Chicago Library, compiled the following sources of that transcendent letter as well as other letters from prison. We thought our readers might enjoy having these resources as well. 

Hover over the text for the hyperlink. 

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. “Letter from A Birmingham Jail draft,” Albert Burton Boutwell Papers, 1949-1967, Collection Number 264, Archives Department, Birmingham Public Library, Alabama. Published, print versions are available at the University of Chicago here.
  • Oscar Wilde, De profunis. 2nd edition. London: Methuen, 1905. (T. and A. Constable) From HathiTrust.
  • The Prisons Foundation: open access distribution of creative works by incarcerated and formerly incarcerated men and women.