Declare Civil Rights Sites A National Monument

800px-16th_Street_Baptist_Church_from_Kelly_Ingram_Park_Nov_2011_Chris Pruitt

Target: President Barack Obama

Goal: Ask that several notable civil rights sites in Birmingham, Alabama, become the nation’s latest national historical park.

Officials in Birmingham, Alabama have asked President Obama to declare the city’s civil rights sites a national monument under the National Park Service by executive order. Birmingham was the center point of some of the most notable and important civil rights events in the twentieth century.

The city saw lunch counter sit-ins, demonstrations, and horrific violence, including a bombing by the Ku Klux Klan that killed four young girls in a church. Martin Luther King Jr. helped plan what was known as the Birmingham Campaign in 1963, which directly influenced the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Over fifty years after the Birmingham Campaign, it is only fitting that the scenes of these important actions be memorialized. The bravery and courage of the men and women who fought for equal rights and against segregation should be honored. Designating the sites of the city as national memorials or parks would do much to benefit the area. Tourism would increase, thereby increasing funding for the upkeep and continued preservation of these important sites.

However, little-known sites that were vital to the Civil Rights Movement would also be commemorated. The city’s Fourth Avenue Historic District would also be included. Fourth Avenue was the major hub of black businesses during segregation. The leaders and supporters of the Civil Rights Movement shopped, dined, and relaxed here. The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute would also be part of the park. Sign the petition to ask President Obama to designate the area as a national historical monument or park by executive order. It is so important that this era of the nation’s history be remembered.


Dear President Obama,

Officials and politicians in Birmingham, Alabama, have recently voiced their support for a national historical monument or park to be established in their city, encapsulating the notable Civil Rights Movement sites. History was made in Birmingham, history that changed the twentieth century and should be remembered for centuries to come.

For many brave men and women, the city was a battleground of the Civil Rights Movement. They held peaceful protests, sat in at lunch counters, and demonstrated against segregation. They were rallied by figures such as Martin Luther King Jr. They faced brutal violence at the hands of KKK members and police. Their struggles and triumphs should be memorialized and I can think of no better figure to do so than the first African American President of the United States.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Chris Pruitt

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