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The U.S. Civil Rights Movement gallery presents the brave fight for equality in the U.S. Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s. Visitors will be immersed in a visceral experience of sights, sounds, and interactive displays depicting the courageous struggles of individuals working to transform the United States from Jim Crow laws to equal rights for all. The exhibit concludes with a tribute to Dr. King and all martyrs who lost their lives to make the United States a stronger nation. Rolls Down Like Water is curated by Tony Award–winning theatrical playwright and film director George C. Wolfe.
This exhibit explores life in the 1950s in the Urban South through interactive displays featuring Jim Crow laws and the people in power who vocally and violently enforced segregation. Despite this adversity, African-American Institutions thrived in Atlanta with a a dynamic community network of churches, colleges, schools, fraternal orders, social clubs, and a range of commercial ventures.
On May 14, 1961 near Anniston, Alabama, a bus carrying Freedom Riders was firebombed. While there were many Freedom Rides prior to this one, the exhibit focuses on this particular tragic event. Visitors enter a reconstruction of the same Greyhound Bus that Freedom Riders rode that day and are immersed by oral histories from the Riders, as well as a short film inside of the bus.
After learning about the training involved in non-violent protests, visitors are invited to participate in a lunch counter sit-in simulation and place themselves in the shoes of non-violent protestors in 1960.
One of the most iconic and joyful moments of the U.S. Civil Rights Movement, the March on Washington gallery is a multimedia experience that highlights the events of the day. View footage of King giving his seminal “I Have A Dream” speech, hear the exciting sounds of protests and songs, and learn more about key players in the event’s successful planning and execution.