Borrego Springs, CA

Friday, May 11, 2012

An historic march

While I lived through the times of the Civil Rights Movement, it wasn’t until today that I gained a better understanding of the struggles involved in securing the right to vote for all citizens.


I furthered my education today at the Lowndes Interpretive Center that is located at the site of the second campsite for the folks participating in the famous Selma to Montgomery Right to Vote March for five days in March of 1965.


Hundreds of people made the 54 mile march to freedom along route 80.  I, of course, knew about the march, but didn’t appreciate its true significance until today.

67 On the way to NC 20123

What a time in history it was.  A march had been tried two weeks earlier which resulted in “Bloody Sunday”.  As the 600 marchers reached the apex of the Edmund Pettus Bridge leaving Selma, they encountered scores of Alabama State Troopers outfitted with gas masks and Billy clubs.  The troopers attacked the non-violent marchers, and beat them bloody.  It took President Lyndon Johnson’s calling in of Federal troops to allow the march to occur on March 21-25. 1965.

IMG_7986 _MG_7990

This march brought the plight of the struggle to register to vote for Black Americans to the attention of Alabama, the Nation, and to the World.  I am in awe of the bravery of these citizens.


          One of the results of this march was the 1965 Voting Rights Act signed by the President in August.


One of the awful results of this march was the fact that landowners in Alabama evicted the black sharecroppers that registered to vote from their homes.  The evicted black farmers and their families lived in tent cities for up to two years before they could find work or get their own land.  The people living in tent city were harassed during that time and local whites would drive into the camp and shoot at them.  How horrid for those people to have to live like that in this country.

It was a very sobering morning for me to visit the Interpretive Center, but I would recommend it anyone interested in understanding better one of those historic times that made the 60’s so eventful in my opinion.

IMG_7994                                                   NOT THE END, BUT PERHAPS THE BEGINNING…

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy


  1. Sometimes we forget that it was not that long ago when events of this magnitude were occurring. I was a teenager at the time but did not really understand all the reasons for what was happening. Brave men and women.

  2. We all saw it happening around us in our own young lives. My parents were incredibly prejudice. My father died when I was 16, and after that my Mother ran their family bar by herself. I remembered her saying things like "they" had better not try to get served in her place, or if one of "them" tried to rent her upstairs apartment she would prefer to burn the place down then rent it out. This was in Milwaukee Wisconsin. We had protest walks and a weekend of riots, but things did change. I don't think I notice race all that much. I think I see people as people. I think I could have accepted my daughter having a mix race marriage. She married a New Zealander, but she did date a very nice young man who was not white in High School.

    We do still have a long way to go however. I wish our religions would be more giving.

  3. It's jarring to think this happened in our lifetimes. I'd like to visit this museum.

  4. I will have to spend time in the area checking things out next time around. Very interesting. I remember living in downtown Milwaukee as Merikay said...lots of Molotov Cocktails exploding and curfews as Father Groppi led his Civil Rights marches. As you stated...not the end, just the beginning!!!

  5. George Stoltz May 12

    Very interesting post, Judy.

    Like so many others I read the stories in the Chicago Daily News and the Chicago Tribune, but it wasn't until I was much older that I fully appreciated what actually took place in this march.

    Another outstanding post, and you continue to create clever endings.

  6. A terrible time in the life of our nation. I grew up in the south in a very prejudiced family, can remember our church voting to have the deacons escort out any black person who dared try to attend worship. Thanks for the great post Judy!

  7. Very good post. Not a good time in our history but something we need to remember as we struggle with our fear of change in the future.

  8. I lived the first 12 years of my life in Elgin, IL..and we had many people of color there. When we moved to Sandwich, there was only one colored person here, and I beleive she was a maid in someone's home...Times have changed for sure, but if you go into the back country of the South, the prejudice is very much still there..sadly. This tour of yours is a grim reminder of how awful we can be to each other.

  9. Growing up in Montana, the civil rights movement was so foreign to us that it could have happened on another planet. We had one black family in town and nobody thought anything about it. They were just our neighbors. It wasn't until I moved to Washington DC that I really started to comprehend what a terrible time in our history this actually was.

  10. great informative post, learned something new today..thank you for sharing.

  11. This history still makes me shake my head to think that any human being had to fight for rights. It's also sad to know that such racism is still out there. :(

  12. Great post, Judy. It sure brings back a lot of memories having watched those marches on TV news and the violent aftermath. Just imagine, that was only 50 years ago and 100 years AFTER the American Civil War.

  13. Wow! Powerful place. We tried to visit the new museum at the lunch counter place in Greensboro, NC, but it was still in the concept stage. I'd like to go to all these places some day.

    Women's rights, black rights, gay rights. I don't understand why some insist all people are not equal!

  14. Really fine post on a very sad time in our country's history. And while parts of the situation are much better, clearly the prejudice is not gone. Look at all the barely veiled racism controversy over President Obama and at what is going on in North Carolina today. Some times I'm ashamed of my fellow citizens. We are hardly the land of the free if everyone isn't free to have the same rights and opportunities as any one else.

  15. What a moving museum that must be. I'd like to experience it too. Thank you for taking us along. And thank you for going. I hope you have a good Mom's Day today.