A New Civil Rights Trail Will Follow The Footsteps Of Martin Luther King Jr.
Coming to the U.S. in January 2018...
A new trail consisting of 75-100 historical locations across the continental U.S. will allow residents and visitors alike to walk in the footsteps of civil rights movement pioneers, including Martin Luther King Jr., John Lewis, and Virginius B. Thornton.
Planned by southern tourism board Travel South USA and the National Parks Service, the trail is set to launch in January 2018, coinciding with Martin Luther King Jr. Day and the 155th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, an executive order issued by President Lincoln in 1863, that changed the federal legal status of more than 3 million enslaved people in the designated areas of the South from slave to free.
Liz Bittner, president and CEO of Travel South USA, said that project leaders are working closely with academics to identify the most historically significant sites for the trail, which will include the 16th Street Baptist church bombed by the Ku Klux Klan, the Woolworth lunch counters in North Carolina where black students protested segregation, and the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Alabama where protesters were attacked by state police.
“It is incredibly important to make sure that our ancestry and our history remains an important part of telling the story of America,” Bittner told Travel + Leisure. “And the best way to do that is to engage our travelers and young people in understanding, so that atrocities don’t happen anymore”.
By Lizzie Cox