The city of Anniston has announced the completion of the Anniston Civil Rights Trail, which recognizes and remembers several key sites and events significant to the Civil Rights Movement.
Here’s what we know about the project & background on some of the historical sites featured on the trail.
Where to find a map
Beginning in February, citizens and tourists alike will be able to pick up updated Trail Map Brochures through Anniston City Hall, the Main Street Anniston office, Freedom Riders National Monument, and the Calhoun County Chamber of Commerce Tourism Department, Visit Calhoun County, Alabama
Background on the project
The project by the Anniston Civil Rights and Heritage Trail Committee first began in 2010 when conversations with locals revealed that many residents were unaware of the various civil rights events that occurred in Anniston.
The 10 sites will be marked with brown and gold markers along with a QR code. Each marker provides information about the specific event that took place at each trail site.
Historic significance of Anniston
One significant marker, the Greyhound Bus Station, was the location of the terminal where on May 14, 1961, a bus carrying Civil Rights activists known as “Freedom Riders” were attacked by an angry and violent mob who were protesting desegregation of public transportation facilities.
Another marks the place where an innocent Black man named Willie Brewster, was shot and killed in 1965 by white extremists after NSRP members encouraged white Annistonians to commit acts of violence against Black people. When his killer was convicted, it became the first instance in Alabama history that a white jury penalized a white person for racially motivated murder.
10 Historic sites
Here’s a list of all the sites featured on the trail:
- Southern Railways Station
- Saint John United Methodist Church
- Trailways Bus Station
- Greyhound Bus Station
- Willie Brewster
- Human Relations Council
- Desegregation of the Library
- Anniston Memorial Hospital
- West 15th Street Historic District
- Seventeenth Street Baptist Church
For more information about the Anniston Civil Rights Trail, visit this link.
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