This coming Monday our nation will celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, but today President Obama celebrated by designating three new national monuments to civil rights history and to promote continued diversity in public spaces like our national parks.
The effort continues to build on the Administration’s aim to protect places that are important to the stories of the American people, this time the locations are in Alabama and South Carolina. The monuments are the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument, Freedom Riders National Monument, and Reconstruction Era National Monument.
The Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument projects the A.G. Watson Motel that served as the headquarters for Dr. Kin’s civil rights campaign, which led to the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
The Freedom Riders National Monument in Anniston, Alabama has two sites that showcase the importance of the Freedom Riders to the civil rights movement, including the Greyhound Bus Station that hosted a racially integrated bus of Riders.
The Reconstruction Era National Monument is in coastal South Carolina and has four sites in Beaufort County that hold the story of the community that was developed by former slaves.
The Administration is calling for protection of the sites by everyone from the community to government officials to take care and protect each of these monuments.