Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument is a new National Park Site located in Birmingham, Alabama. The park is still a park in progress which means the National Park Service is working to build visitor services.
The Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument will encompass roughly four city blocks in Birmingham, Alabama. The National Monument was established on January 12, 2017.
Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument
- Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument
- Things to know when booking a trip to Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument
- National Park Sites near the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument
A.G. Gaston Motel
The motel which served as the headquarters for the Birmingham campaign. From April to May 1964 civil rights leaders including Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. took up residence at the hotel while planning how to target Birmingham’s civil rights laws in a non-violent manner.
The A.G. Gaston Motel was a product of segregation. Arthur George Gatson, a successful African American businessman opened the Gaston Motel to address the needs of the segregated community in 1954.
Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Reverend Ralph David Abernathy occupied the motel’s main suite, room 30, located on the second floor above the office and lobby. The suite’s sitting room was where most of the strategy meetings were held.
16th Street Baptist Church
On a Sunday morning in 1963, the Ku Klux Klan detonated a dynamite bomb through the side of the 16th Street Baptist Church killing four African American schoolgirls.
The bombing horrified the nation and was a turning point in the civil rights movement.
Bethel Baptist Church
The Bethel Baptist Church has been credited with helping to shape the Civil Rights Movement. Civil Rights Leader, Reverend Fred L. Shuttlesworth was the pastor of the church. The church often would serve as a gathering place for African Americans to discuss civil rights. These meetings angered white supremacists who in 1958 bombed the church. Thankfully the church was empty at the time. This event cemented Reverend Shuttlesworth determination to bring Birmingham to the center of the Civil Rights Movement.
Kelly Ingram Park
In the early 1960s, the Kelly Ingram Park served as a spot for demonstrators to congregate.
Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (BICR) is located across the street from Kelly Ingram Park. The institute is a cultural and educational research center. They opened their doors in 1992 and have been visited by over 2 million visitors.
St. Paul United Methodist Church
St. Paul United Methodist Church was established to allow newly freed African American slaves an opportunity to gather and worship in 1869.
The church was one of the earliest churches to hold mass meetings and played a significant role in the civil rights movement.
Portions of the 4th Avenue Business District.
The 4th Avenue Business District was home to barbers and beauty shops, restaurants, theaters, and motels that African Americans could visit without discrimination.
Things to know when booking a trip to Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument
Check the parks Facebook page for updates on park progress.
Visit the parks partner sites for information:
Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (located right next to the Gaston Motel)
520 16th Street N.
Birmingham, Alabama 35203
The Gaston Motel is currently closed to the public!
National Park Sites near the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument
Freedom Riders National Monument – 61 miles
Little River Canyon National Preserve – 97 miles
Russell Cave National Monument – 144 miles
Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park – 148 miles
Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park – 146 miles