Black History Month 2024

'birmingham' - 3 results

Birmingham Black Rights Campaign



Birmingham, Alabama - The Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) planned protests of racial segregation. These protests were led by Martin Luther King, James Bevel, and Fred Shuttlesworth. King called Birmingham the most segregated city in the country.

As the protests continued, volunteers ran low. It was decided to include children. They came from elementary, middle, and high school.

The Commissioner of Public Safety, Eugene 'Bull' Connor acted against the children. Connor sent high pressure water hoses and attack dogs at the children. Hundreds of children and adults were arrested.

40% of Birmingham's population were Black Americans. Yet, none worked for the Birmingham Police Department.

Images of this period showed the harsh brutality of segregation in the South. Whites attacked defenseless and huddled children, because of skin color. The children were no threat to anyone.


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Birmingham May Bombings of 1963



Birmingham, Alabama - Bombs exploded at the home of A. D. King (Martin Luther King's brother), and under the room where Martin Luther King had stayed the previous nights.

The first bomb was placed by a uniformed police worker. He drove a marked police car to the home of A. D. King. There he placed a bomb near the porch. The second was thrown at Room 30, of the Gaston Motel.

There was a month-long protest in Birmingham, for racial justice. Finally, local white Birmingham politicians and bureaucrats agreed to concessions. On Friday, May 10th, they agreed to limit racial discrimination and lessen segregation.

In response, on Saturday, May 11th, a white supremacist rally was called outside Birmingham, in Bessemer, Alabama. That evening, at 10:45 p.m., a bomb exploded at A. D. King's home, planted by the Birmingham police.

Just before midnight, at 11:58 p.m., the bomb exploded at the Gaston Hotel. The explosion could be heard across town.

Later, President John F. Kennedy remarked, 'the people who've gotten out of hand are not the white people, but the Negroes by and large.' On this basis, Kennedy called on the military to enter Birmingham.

No deaths or injuries were caused by the explosive devices (bombs). Martin Luther King had left earlier, to go to Atlanta.

The guest, in the room below King's, slept elsewhere. He had planned to sleep there, to get a break from the meetings at his house. But, fatigue forced him to sleep at home.

The bomb at the home of A. D. King did not do enough damage to cause injury. No one was prosecuted for the bombings.


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Birmingham Church Bombing



Birmingham, Alabama - Four white males killed four (4) Black American girls in church. A bomb was placed at the 16th Street Baptist Church. More than a dozen people were injured. The only deaths were the children.

The victims were Addie Mae Collins, Carole Robertson, Cynthia Wesley, and Denise McNair. The bombers were in the Ku Klux Klan. They were Thomas Edwin Blanton Jr., Herman Frank Cash, Robert Edward Chambliss, and Bobby Frank Cherry.

On Sunday morning, the four (4) planted 15 sticks of dynamite at the church. The sticks were placed under the church steps, with a time delay. This was near the church basement.

About 10:22 a.m., there were five (5) children in the basement bathroom. They wore their best Sunday clothes. They changed into choir robes for the Sunday sermon.

The phone rang. The acting Sunday School secretary answered. She was Carolyn Maull, a 14-year-old girl. She heard the words, 'Three minutes.'

Less than a minute later, the bomb exploded. It threw the girls' bodies through the air like rag dolls. The explosion blew a 7-foot hole in the rear wall. A passing driver was blown out of his car. Several parked cars next to the church were destroyed.

Four of the girls were killed. The fifth was Susan Collins. She was the sister of Addie Mae. Susan was permanently blinded by the blast.

In 1977, Robert Chambliss was convicted for one of the murders. He was sent to jail for the murder of 11-year-old Carol Denise McNair.

In 2001, Thomas Edwin Blanton Jr. was convicted of all four (4) murders. He got life in prison.

In 2002, Bobby Cherry was convicted of all four (4) murders. He got life in prison.

Herman Cash died in 1994. He was never tried.


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