Discover the ultimate American Roadtrip

The Road to <strong>Civil Rights</strong>

The Road to Civil Rights

Atlanta - Louisiana

The fight for Civil Rights for African Americans in the 1960s is widely celebrated all over the United States. Hit the road to discover the landmarks that shaped the struggle to which so many important figures dedicated their lives, along with museums and memorials that chart the history of the movement, honour its heroes and heroines, and keep their remarkable legacy burning bright.

The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 1: Martin Luther King, Jr National Historic Site 1/9

Martin Luther King, Jr National Historic Site

Dr Martin Luther King, Jr was a pivotal figure in the Civil Rights movement. He spent his early years in the Sweet Auburn neighbourhood of Atlanta, a portion of which has been transformed into a Historic Site celebrating his life. The shotgun houses and Victorian homes of the period have been carefully preserved to seal the memories in time. Take a guided tour of the King House, before taking a moment by the reflecting pool near his tomb to remember the impact of this extraordinary man’s life and work.

Visitor Center, 450 Auburn Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30312

https://www.nps.gov/malu/

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 2: Rosa Parks Museum 2/9

Rosa Parks Museum

The town of Montgomery, Alabama was where the Civil Rights movement found its footing after the 1955 arrest of Rosa Parks. Parks’ refusal to give up her seat for a white passenger sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott – a pivotal step in the struggle for equality. Today Parks is remembered with a museum dedicated to her. Take a look at the police reports and court documents from her case, along with a 1955 station wagon that was used to ferry boycotters around.

252 Montgomery St, Montgomery, AL 36104

http://www.troy.edu/rosaparks/index.html

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 3: National Voting Rights Museum 3/9

National Voting Rights Museum

The Selma to Montgomery marches in 1965 were vital in securing the right to vote for racial minorities. The National Voting Rights Museum was named in honour of this momentous law change, in the town where it all began. Located at the foot of the famous Edmund Pettus Bridge, where marchers were brutally attacked as they began their protest, the museum features iconic images taken by photographer James Karales, along with the poignant footprints of those who marched their way into history.

6 US-80 BUS, Selma, AL 36701

http://nvrmi.com

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 4: Birmingham Civil Rights Institute 4/9

Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

The institute forms part of Birmingham’s Civil Rights District – a collection of key locations commemorated by the US government as a National Monument. Here you can tour the permanent exhibits which chart the history of the Civil Rights movement through fascinating photographs and gripping archive footage. Special exhibitions explore the themes of separation and segregation while guest lectures from people who lived through the changing times offer first-person testimonies of the era-defining events.

520 16th St N, Birmingham, AL 35203

http://www.bcri.org

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 5: Fifth Avenue, Nashville 5/9

Fifth Avenue, Nashville

As the Civil Rights movement grew in size and strength, Nashville was witness to some of the most seismic events of the late 1950s and early ‘60s. At department stores along the city’s Fifth Avenue, segregated lunch counters were the scene of peaceful sit-ins that ultimately brought an end to segregated public services. Tour the sites of the sit-ins including the old Woolworth’s store, before heading to the Civil Rights Room at Nashville Public Library to browse archives that capture the drama of the time.

5th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203

https://library.nashville.org/research/collection/civil-rights-room

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 6: National Civil Rights Museum 6/9

National Civil Rights Museum

Dr King met his untimely death on April 4, 1968, when he was assassinated while standing on a balcony at the Lorraine Motel. In the 1980s this rundown motel was transformed into what’s now one of Memphis’ most important landmarks. Take a tour through the Civil Rights Museum and be confronted with some of the movement’s most unsettling moments before ending your visit with a trip to King’s room, set up just as it was on that fateful day.

450 Mulberry Street Memphis, TN 38103

https://www.civilrightsmuseum.org/

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 7: Mississippi Civil Rights Museum 7/9

Mississippi Civil Rights Museum

Jackson was a focus of the Civil Rights movement, and a centre for some of its most recognised struggles. At the newly-opened Mississippi Civil Rights Museum, visitors will witness the freedom struggle in eight interactive galleries that show the systematic oppression of black Mississippians and their fight for equality that transformed the state and nation. Seven of the galleries encircle a central space called ‘This Little Light of Mine’. There, a dramatic sculpture glows brighter and the music of the movement swells as visitors gather.

222 North St, Jackson, MS 39201

https://mcrm.mdah.ms.gov

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 8: Medgar Evers Home and Museum 8/9

Medgar Evers Home and Museum

Medgar Evers was a World War II veteran who campaigned to overturn segregation at the University of Mississippi until his death in 1963. A mile away from the statue dedicated to him in Jackson, Mississippi, is Evers’ humble home. Used as a movie location, the studio left the flat-roofed home furnished when filming ended to evoke a real sense of the era. There’s also a museum room inside where you can learn about his life and work.

2332 Margaret W Alexander Dr, Jackson, MS 39213

https://www.tougaloo.edu/library/archives-special-collections

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The Road to Civil Rights

Stop 9: Whitney Plantation 9/9

Whitney Plantation

Just under an hour’s drive from New Orleans, Whitney offers the chance to see an historic example of a working plantation. Many of the original buildings from the late 18th century are still standing today; including the Big House, a French Creole-style cottage, and the Oldest Kitchen in Louisiana. Through museum exhibits, memorial artwork and hundreds of first-person narratives, visitors to Whitney will gain a unique perspective on the African-American experience.

5099 LA-18, Edgard, LA 70049

http://whitneyplantation.com

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