Federal Legislation Could Connect Civil Rights Sites


National Civil Rights Museum - JUSTIN FOX BURKS
  • Justin Fox Burks
  • National Civil Rights Museum
Federal legislation that would establish a nationally linked system of historic sites considered imperative to the Civil Rights Movement has been introduced in the U.S. Senate.

U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander cosponsored legislation that, if passed, will establish the African American Civil  Rights Network and connect more than 50 sites in 20 states and in D.C., providing technical and preservation assistance to the landmarks.

"This network will ensure the Civil Rights Movement remains at the front of our history and will help our children grow up learning about this pivotal movement," said Alexander.

In Memphis, two buildings that hosted Martin Luther King Jr in his final hours — the Lorraine Motel and the Mason Temple, Church of God in Christ — are included in the list of proposed sites. 

Absent from the list of proposed sites is the recently reopened but only slightly renovated Clayborn Temple, which served as a major hub for the Memphis Sanitation Worker's Strike of 1968, the same strike that brought King to Memphis, where he was assassinated 49 years ago.

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