Martin is a non-violent typeface inspired by the protest signs carried by the followers of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the memphis sanitation strike of 1968.
Photo by Robert Abbott Sengstacke
Memphis sanitation workers, the majority of them African American, went out on strike on February 12, 1968, demanding recognition for their union, better wages, and safer working conditions after two trash handlers were killed by a malfunctioning garbage truck. As it dragged on through March, with the Memphis mayor refusing to negotiate, the strike gained national attention. As they marched, striking workers carried copies of a poster declaring “I AM A MAN,” a statement that recalled a question abolitionists posed more than 100 years earlier, “Am I not a man and a brother?”
Photo by Benedict Fernandez
Martin Luther King Jr. joined the cause, speaking to a crowd of 6,000 in late March and returning on April 3rd to deliver one of his most famous speeches, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop.” King placed the strike in a larger context, declaring, “The masses of people are rising up.