Obama to Use Martin Luther King's Bible for Swearing In

On Jan. 21, the president will also use Abraham Lincoln's bible.

Posted: 01/10/2013 08:45 AM EST

President Obama will use the Bibles of civil rights hero Martin Luther King Jr. (pictured above) and former President Abraham Lincoln when he is sworn in for his second term on Jan. 21.

He will use the Robinson family Bible when he takes the oath of office on Sunday, Jan. 20, in a private ceremony at the White House.

King's was his “traveling Bible.” King typically traveled with a number of books that included this Bible. It was used for preparing sermons and speeches, including during his time as pastor of Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama.

"President Obama’s second inauguration will be a great moment in American history," Dexter King said. "Including my father’s Bible in the swearing-in ceremony speaks to the great progress we’ve made as a country. As we move forward as a nation, I know that we’ll continue to make great strides in the fight for equality and freedom for all. My father was a man of God, of love and of peace. I hope the presence of his Bible will provide similar inspiration to the American people as we celebrate the inauguration of our president."

The Robinson family Bible was a gift from First Lady Michelle Obama’s father, Fraser Robinson III, to his mother, LaVaughn Delores Robinson, on Mother’s Day in 1958, said the Presidential Inaugural Committee.

Historically, inauguration ceremonies are not held on a Sunday because courts and other public institutions are closed. This year, in accordance with the requirements of the Constitution, Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will be officially sworn in on Monday, Jan. 21. A public ceremonial swearing in will take place in front of the Capitol building.

“We know our father would be deeply moved to see President Obama take the oath of office using his Bible,” King’s children said in a statement Thursday. "His traveling Bible inspired him as he fought for freedom, justice and equality, and we hope it can be a source of strength for the president as he begins his second term.”

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(Photo: Courtesy of Matt Lemmon via Flickr.com)

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