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There’s plenty of history in the making here at the National Civil Rights Museum.

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We Were Prepared to Die: Freedom Riders

Fifty-nine years ago, the Freedom Rides of 1961 entered the state of Alabama. Potential violence awaited in Anniston and Birmingham. Below, the backstory of how the Freedom Rides began and how one of the most pivotal protests in the Civil Rights Movement came about. While we know the names of notable activists like James Lawson and Diane Nash, there are numerous overlooked details behind the scenes of this epic event. The Freedom Riders story began fifteen years earlier in 1946 when... Read More
at Thursday, May 14, 2020
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The Children Shall Lead Them: Birmingham 1963

As you move through the galleries of the National Civil Rights Museum, you follow a timeline of struggle and strength. The sounds of freedom songs trail behind you as you step into Birmingham, Alabama – a town that became known as “Bombingham” and the center of the Civil Rights Movement. On a busy day, you might notice a life-size image of a young girl holding a sign: “Can a man love God and hate his brother?”  Your attention might be drawn to the replica... Read More
at Thursday, May 7, 2020
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400 Years Later. The Historical Truth.

Sometime around August 20, 1619 (the exact date is not known), a ship arrived on the shores of Point Comfort, Virginia with between 20 and 30 Africans…and thus the Inter-Atlantic theft and enslavement of African people began. Thanks to the 1619 Project, an initiative of the New York Times , spearheaded by Nikole Hannah Jones, a staff writer for New York Times Magazine and a 2017 MacArthur Fellow, we have accurate information being openly discussed in the media about the true... Read More
at Tuesday, September 24, 2019
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More #StolenLives

MORE #STOLENLIVES When will it be enough? by Terri Lee Freeman President, National Civil Rights Museum In the span of 24 hours America was shaken by the report of two mass shootings resulting in the deaths of 31 people – 22 killed at a WalMart in El Paso, TX and 9 killed in Dayton, OH in an entertainment district.  Not unlike most everyone who breathes fresh air, my heart grieves for every family that said good-bye to their loved ones, not expecting it would be so... Read More
Posted by Connie Dyson
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Museum Receives Top Honor

The National Civil Rights Museum is among 10 institutions the Institute of Museum and Library Services announced today as recipients of the 2019  National Medal for Museum and Library Service s , the nation’s highest honor given to libraries and museums that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities. Over the past 25 years, the award has celebrated institutions that are making a difference for individuals, families, and communities. Selected from 30... Read More
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VOTER SUPPRESSION IS VOTER SUPPRESSION

Voter Suppression IS Voter Suppression By Terri Lee Freeman, National Civil Rights Museum President Lyndon Baines Johnson signed into law the Voting Rights Acts of 1965 with the intent of eliminating the legal barriers imposed at the state and local levels to prevent African Americans from exercising their legal right to vote as stated in the 15th Amendment.  That amendment was ratified in 1870 and it guaranteed voting rights to all men regardless of race.  It’s... Read More
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Museum Mourns the Passing of Freedom Award Honoree Frank Robinson

We are saddened by the passing of baseball icon Frank Robinson, a Hall of Famer, two-time MVP, and MLB’s first African-American manager. He was honored by the National Civil Rights Museum with the Freedom Award Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014. His contributions to civil rights and baseball were many, including the integration of black players in the league. While he was with us for the Freedom Award, he spoke often about the impact his mentor Jackie Robinson, who broke Major League... Read More
Posted by Connie Dyson at Thursday, February 7, 2019
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America Has a Hate Problem

By Terri Lee Freeman, Museum President Our issues of hate are killing our country… still.  Last fall, we witnessed NBC Today Show host Megyn Kelly state, “…when I was a kid that [using blackface] was okay if you were dressing up as a character.”  Uh…no, Ms. Kelly, it wasn’t okay then, and it isn’t okay now.  And now, the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s racist exploits, either as Michael Jackson in... Read More
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Let’s stop tearing down community and build something we can all be proud of

By Terri Lee Freeman In early October the National Civil Rights Museum, along with Bridges and Facing History and Ourselves, launched a campaign to encourage empathy. Our  Open Up. Spark a Connection.  campaign was created to get people to do just what it says,  open up !   In the face of our national discourse, or possibly the lack thereof, being empathetic and recognizing the “others” as ourselves couldn’t be more important. ... Read More
at Monday, November 5, 2018
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How are the Children?

I often think of a customary greeting in some African countries, ‘How are the Children?”  The response is generally, “The children are well.”  The question is asked because child well-being is a good measure of community well-being.  Regrettably, we cannot provide that response. By all measures the children are not at all well.  The policy to separate children from parents who illegally cross the border, emphasizes just how poorly the children are,... Read More
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