Civil-rights sites new U.S. monuments
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s administration designated three new national monuments Thursday honoring civil-rights history as it commemorates Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birthday next week.
The monuments are the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument in Alabama, the Freedom Riders National Monument in Anniston, Ala., and the Reconstruction Era National Monument in South Carolina.
“President Obama is taking new steps to promote diversity and inclusivity in our nation’s system of national parks, national forests, monuments and other public lands and waters,” a White House statement said, adding that the designations “will protect historic sites in Alabama and South Carolina that played an important role in American history stretching from the Civil War to the civil rights movement.”
The Freedom Riders National Monument includes the Greyhound bus station where a racially integrated bus of Freedom Riders attempting to test desegregation was attacked in the spring of 1961.
The new Reconstruction Era National Monument includes four sites throughout Beaufort County, S.C., honoring a community of freed, former slaves in the Reconstruction-era South.