Statue of Martin Luther King Jr. overlooking the Civil Rights Institute
Photo by: fotobot-d, Creative Commons
The American Civil Rights Movement covers a period in the history of the United States when African Americans struggled to get equal and fair treatment. It has undoubtedly etched its place in history not leaving any wonder as to why different memorials and museums have been put up in its memory. One such place is the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, a museum and research center rolled into one complex that is dedicated to the remembrance and depiction of the struggles faced by the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s to 1960s.
The institute is rightfully located in the Civil Rights District, a site of other historic venues such as the 16th Street Baptist Church, the Kelly Ingram Park, and the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame. The establishment of the institute in 1992 only served to cement Birmingham’s pride in its history as well as its fervor to forge and promote unity among its communities.
Through the Institute’s museum, you can take a walk through the Birmingham’s past especially as it is associated with the Civil Rights Movement. Different permanent exhibits showcase the city’s many contributions to the movement. A slew of multimedia exhibits on the other hand provide a good background on the African American life and struggle for civil rights. The most popular of these exhibits is the Oral History Project, which tells the story of Birmingham’s role through taped voices of those included in the movement.
The Institute’s research center is another treasure trove for those who want to learn more about the civil rights movement with its collection of different archived materials such as documents and artifacts. These are made available to researchers and educators. The place may also serve as a meeting place for different organizations as well as a venue for seminars and workshops.