Martin Luther King’s Assassination: Watch the Original News Broadcasts

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Flip Schulke / Corbis

From the standpoint of history, April 4, 1968 has gone down as one of the most infamous dates of the 20th century. It was on that evening, 43 years ago today, that Martin Luther King was cut down by an assassin’s bullet at a Memphis motel.

King had come to the city to support striking garbage workers and was just days away from going to Washington to launch what he called his “Poor People’s Campaign.” Instead, as he prepared to go to dinner at a fellow civil rights leader’s home, he was murdered. Almost immediately news reports went out alerting the nation of King’s death.

(More on Hear audio interviews with King’s last living aides to witness his murder)

Below are the original CBS breaking news broadcasts that went out minutes after the assassination, and the report from later that evening.

CBS News

Part 1


Part 2


(More on See a report looking back at King’s assassination)

Part 3


CBS Evening News