Learn About Martin Luther King Jr. And Rosa Parks On A Civil Rights Audio Tour Of Montgomery's Civil Rights Trail

    Courage, vision, and rebellion, you can feel it in the air when you walk the streets of Montgomery, Alabama. History has a story to tell, and if you listening you can hear it whisper tales about the Civil War and Civil Rights movements that took place in Montgomery. It has been said that we cannot move forward as a nation unless we embrace our past, and perhaps there is no better place to start than in Montgomery, where so much history has woven its self into the very fabric of America.

    Just after the New Year in 1861 Alabama seceded from the union to declared itself the Republic of Alabama. It was not long afterwards that six of the states joined together to form the government of the Confederate States of America, with Montgomery as the capitol. In the spring of 1861 a important message was sent from the Winter Building in Downtown Montgomery. The message was one that would finalize the division of the nation; the order to fire on Fort Sumter. This was the beginning the Civil War, in which brother fought against brother, and no one could be trusted.

    Many events in Montgomery's history have had a ripple effect that has crossed the nation. Such as the case when a seamstress named Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat, for a white man, on a city bus. During this time we were not all equal in America. Instead, we were segregated, but Rosa Parks bold move, and her later arrest changed everything. The Montgomery Bus Boycott was the first step on the long road to civil rights.

    Travel along the Civil Rights Trail and walk in the footsteps of civil rights pioneers from Selma through Lowndes County to Montgomery and then from Montgomery to Tuskegee. Along the way you can also stop in at local sites that highlight the triumphs and tribulations these pioneers endured on the road to equality.

    A tour of Montgomery's Civil Right's sites would not be complete without walking the streets where Martin Luther King Jr. and his family lived from 1954 to 1960. During this time, he served as the pastor of the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church, which you can visit. Martin Luther King Jr. was a leader in the community, and was later elected as president to a newly formed group, the Montgomery Improvement Association.

    Although terrorist who tried to intimidate King and other Civil Rights protestors by bombing the parsonage where he and his family lived, King did not give up. He went on to become a national leader for the Civil Rights Movement, and was the moving force behind the march for voting rights that began on the Edmond Pettus Bridge in Selma and ended at the capitol steps in Montgomery. These brave acts and dedication to Civil Rights would eventually lead to legislation passed by Congress that protected the rights of all citizens.

    When in Montgomery, you can also take a Civil Rights Audio Tour by renting an MP3 player or by downloading the new audio tour online. The audio program provides a self-guided walking or driving tour of Montgomery’s Civil Rights sites. There are 21 tracks with information about the places and people who were instrumental in the Civil Rights movement, featuring their voices and unique stories, and enhanced by sound effects that help you truly experience the place and time in history.

    These early pioneers believed our nation could change, and it has in many ways. We cannot forget what happened on the streets of Montgomery or around the country, nor can we forget the loss of lives to the quest for Civil Rights. We can however honor these brave men and women, forgive the past wrongs, and move forward to create a society that is united to helping our fellow humans around the world.

     By Melody Schubert

    Getting There:

    The 21 tracks available offer details about the places and people who were instrumental in the Civil Rights movement. Hear their stories as you take a trip to the past to relive the experience on these intriguing audio tours. Use the link provide to Download the Audio Files - size 73mb in a zipped file

    To learn more about events, attractions, and trip planning options for your trip to Alabama visit the Alabama Department of Tourism at http://www.alabama.travel/