Martin Luther King and The Montgomery Story

By: (Hassler, Alfred and Benton Resnik)

Price: $500.00

Quantity: 1 available


Stapled comic book with image of Martin Luther King behind buses and cars in Montgomery. This copy has some age-toning and soiling along with an old dampstain that shows up on the final leaf on both sides with some very minor evidence on a few other pages.There is some edge wear, short tears and minor chips from use on a few pages. Overall for a 60+ year-old, newsprint comic book, this copy is still quite attractive. I cannot pretend to be a comic book grader, so, as a book dealer, I would say that this falls in the VG- range, with noted flaws. This comic is a rare original from 1957 or 1958. The points of the original printings are copper rather than stainless steel staples and a lightly blurred union printers emblem on the rear wrap. This copy is also from the collection of Edmund Sullivan. The comic is not dated, but several sources think that December, 1957 was the first press run, though there are those who argue for 1958. The comic is a true artifact of the Civil Rights Movement, produced at the end of the Montgomery Bus Boycott and featuring a serious portrayal of MLK and his philosophy of non-violence. The comic was published by the Fellowship of Reconciliation. There is a price of 10 cents on the front cover, but the comics were distributed at no charge throughout the South. Around 250,000 were printed, though most were destroyed through use, neglect or the actions of white authorities. This comic had a recognized influence on the Civil Rights Movement. As African-Americans all over the South read the story of MLK and Montgomery, they also learned King's ideas on non-violence, which became inspirational. Congressman John Lewis has been quoted as saying that he read this comic as a teenager and that it influenced his involvement with the Civil Rights Movement and that the comic was used in workshops where non-violent practices were taught. There was also an early Spanish version, and today Arab versions are still distributed in the Middle East. The comic has almost no publication information except for a block on the back attributing publication to the Fellowship of Reconciliation and address in Nyack, NY. Research has revealed that the authors were Alfred Hassler and Benton Resnik and the artist was Golden Age illustrator, Sy Barry. These men worked for cartoonist Al Capp's studios. Capp admired MLK and provided these services pro bono. Sy Barry has stated that his signature was originally on the cover but that it was covered by text. While the comic was widely distributed, the newsprint was fragile and only a few copies of this original remain. WorldCat locates only one, in a German library. The Smithsonian has a copy though it may be the Spanish version. A scanned copy is on-line, and there have been many, many reprints since 2006. I have found no other copies for sale. The book seems to be a true rarity. It embodies a moment in time at the start of the Martin Luther King's involvement with non-violent protest. This book is a palpable reminder of what was about to happen in the American South in the near future.; Color Drawings; Small 4to 9" - 11" tall; 16 pages

Title: Martin Luther King and The Montgomery Story

Author Name: (Hassler, Alfred and Benton Resnik)

Illustrator: Illustrated by Sy Barry

Categories: African - American,

Edition: First Edition

Publisher: Nyack, Fellowship of Reconciliation: 1957

Binding: Hardcover

Seller ID: 16420

Keywords: African - American Black Negro Comic Book Martin Luther King Montgomery Bus Boycott Alabama Civil Rights Race