Samuel L. Jackson is not in photo of Martin Luther King playing pool

25 January 2022
What was claimed

Samuel L. Jackson, a student at Morehouse College, can be seen in the background of a photo of Dr Martin Luther King Jr. playing pool in 1966.

Our verdict

Although Mr Jackson was a student at Morehouse College, he confirmed on Twitter he wasn’t in the photo. The picture was not taken at the College.

A Facebook post falsely claims the actor Samuel L. Jackson can be seen in a photo of Dr Martin Luther King Jr. playing pool in 1966.

A caption states: “Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. shooting pool in 1966. Samuel L. Jackson, who was a freshman at Morehouse College at the time, is in this photo.”

However, Mr Jackson confirmed on his verified Twitter account that, although he met Dr King, he was not in the photo posted on Facebook. 

He stated: “Okay, I met Dr King, but not at a pool hall. That’s NOT me!!”

Mr Jackson attended Morehouse College, based in Atlanta, Georgia, in the 1960s, where Dr King’s father, Martin Luther King Sr. was a trustee at the time. Dr Martin Luther King Jr. also studied at the college from 1944 to 1948. 

The photo of Dr King was actually taken when the civil rights activist visited Chicago, Illinois, in 1966. 

Cropped image courtesy of by Nathan Congleton, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Update 25 January 2022

The article was changed to clarify the wording of the claim.

This article is part of our work fact checking potentially false pictures, videos and stories on Facebook. You can read more about this—and find out how to report Facebook content—here. For the purposes of that scheme, we’ve rated this claim as false because Samuel L. Jackson confirmed he wasn’t in the photo.

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