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Chronological Listings

But the African-American community also took legal action against the city ordinance arguing that it was unconstitutional based on the Supreme Court's "separate is never equal" decision in Brown v. Board of Education. After being defeated in several lower court rulings and suffering large financial losses, the city of Montgomery lifted the law mandating segregated public transportation.

Flush with victory, African-American civil rights leaders recognized the need for a national organization to help coordinate their efforts. They would help conduct non-violent protests to promote civil rights reform. King's participation in the organization gave him a base of operation throughout the South, as well as a national platform.

The organization felt the best place to start to give African Americans a voice was to enfranchise them in the voting process. In February , the SCLC sponsored more than 20 mass meetings in key southern cities to register black voters in the South. King met with religious and civil rights leaders and lectured all over the country on race-related issues. The trip affected him in a deeply profound way, increasing his commitment to America's civil rights struggle. African-American civil rights activist Bayard Rustin , who had studied Gandhi's teachings, became one of King's associates and counseled him to dedicate himself to the principles of non-violence.

Rustin served as King's mentor and advisor throughout his early activism and was the main organizer of the March on Washington. But Rustin was also a controversial figure at the time, being a homosexual with alleged ties to the Communist Party, USA. Though his counsel was invaluable to King, many of his other supporters urged him to distance himself from Rustin. In February , a group of African-American students began what became known as the sit-in movement in Greensboro, North Carolina.

The students would sit at racially segregated lunch counters in the city's stores. When asked to leave or sit in the colored section, they just remained seated, subjecting themselves to verbal and sometimes physical abuse. The movement quickly gained traction in several other cities. By August of , the sit-ins had been successful in ending segregation at lunch counters in 27 southern cities.

By , Martin Luther King Jr. He returned to Atlanta to become co-pastor with his father at Ebenezer Baptist Church but also continued his civil rights efforts. On October 19, , King and 75 students entered a local department store and requested lunch-counter service but were denied. When they refused to leave the counter area, King and 36 others were arrested. Realizing the incident would hurt the city's reputation, Atlanta's mayor negotiated a truce and charges were eventually dropped. But soon after, King was imprisoned for violating his probation on a traffic conviction.

The news of his imprisonment entered the presidential campaign when candidate John F. Kennedy made a phone call to Coretta Scott King. Kennedy expressed his concern for King's harsh treatment for the traffic ticket and political pressure was quickly set in motion. King was soon released. In the spring of , Martin Luther King Jr. Entire families attended. City police turned dogs and fire hoses on demonstrators. Martin Luther King was jailed along with large numbers of his supporters, but the event drew nationwide attention. However, King was personally criticized by black and white clergy alike for taking risks and endangering the children who attended the demonstration.

In his famous Letter from Birmingham Jail, King eloquently spelled out his theory of non-violence: "Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community, which has constantly refused to negotiate, is forced to confront the issue.

Muriel Rukeyser

On August 28, , the historic March on Washington drew more than , people in the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial. It was here that King made his famous "I Have a Dream" speech, emphasizing his belief that someday all men could be brothers. The rising tide of civil rights agitation produced a strong effect on public opinion.


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Many people in cities not experiencing racial tension began to question the nation's Jim Crow laws and the near century second class treatment of African-American citizens. This resulted in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of authorizing the federal government to enforce desegregation of public accommodations and outlawing discrimination in publicly owned facilities.

King's struggle continued throughout the s. Often, it seemed as though the pattern of progress was two steps forward and one step back. On March 7, , a civil rights march, planned from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama's capital, turned violent as police with nightsticks and tear gas met the demonstrators as they tried to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge.

King was not in the march, however, the attack was televised showing horrifying images of marchers being bloodied and severely injured. Seventeen demonstrators were hospitalized in a day that would be called "Bloody Sunday. A third march was planned and this time King made sure he was part of it. Not wanting to alienate southern judges by violating the restraining order, a different approach was taken.

On March 9, , a procession of 2, marchers, both black and white, set out once again to cross the Pettus Bridge and confronted barricades and state troopers. Instead of forcing a confrontation, King led his followers to kneel in prayer and they then turned back. Alabama governor George Wallace continued to try to prevent another march, however, President Lyndon B. Johnson pledged his support and ordered U. Army troops and the Alabama National Guard to protect the protestors.

On March 21, approximately 2, people began a march from Selma to the capitol in Montgomery.

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On March 25, the number of marchers, which had grown to an estimated 25,, gathered in front of the state capitol where Dr. King delivered a televised speech. Five months after the historic peaceful protest, President Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act. From late through , Martin Luther King Jr. But he met with increasing criticism and public challenges from young black power leaders. King's patient, non-violent approach and appeal to white middle-class citizens alienated many black militants who considered his methods too weak, too late and ineffective.

To address this criticism, King began making a link between discrimination and poverty, and he began to speak out against the Vietnam War. He felt that America's involvement in Vietnam was politically untenable and the government's conduct in the war discriminatory to the poor. He sought to broaden his base by forming a multi-race coalition to address the economic and unemployment problems of all disadvantaged people. By , the years of demonstrations and confrontations were beginning to wear on Martin Luther King Jr.

He had grown tired of marches, going to jail, and living under the constant threat of death. He was becoming discouraged at the slow progress of civil rights in America and the increasing criticism from other African-American leaders. Plans were in the works for another march on Washington to revive his movement and bring attention to a widening range of issues. In the spring of , a labor strike by Memphis sanitation workers drew King to one last crusade.

I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight that we, as a people, will get to the promised land. The shooter, a malcontent drifter and former convict named James Earl Ray , was eventually apprehended after a two-month, international manhunt. The assassination sparked riots and demonstrations in more than cities across the country. In , Ray pleaded guilty to assassinating King and was sentenced to 99 years in prison.

He died in prison on April 23, Years after his death, he is the most widely known African-American leader of his era. His life and work have been honored with a national holiday, schools and public buildings named after him, and a memorial on Independence Mall in Washington, D. But his life remains controversial as well. In the s, FBI files, released under the Freedom of Information Act, revealed that he was under government surveillance, and suggested his involvement in adulterous relationships and communist influences.

Over the years, extensive archival studies have led to a more balanced and comprehensive assessment of his life, portraying him as a complex figure: flawed, fallible and limited in his control over the mass movements with which he was associated, yet a visionary leader who was deeply committed to achieving social justice through nonviolent means. Day, a federal holiday honoring the legacy of the slain civil rights leader.

In Jacksonville built the county courthouse in the center of a large square. When the county seat was removed to Anniston in , the Jacksonville people placed a handsome Confederate monument in the center of one square. Their highest peaks range from 1, to 2, feet above sea level. These mountains are separated from the Coldwater Mountain to the southwest, by the narrow, faulted valley between Oxford and Anniston, and from the Terrapin Mountains, to the northeast, by the similar valley between Piedmont and White Plains. In the top strata of the mountains there are many deposits of limonite.

McSpadden, John M. Caldwell, James Crook, W. Howell, Wm. Hames, D. Aderholt, H. Stevenson, W. Alexander, J. Nisbet, L. Grant and John D. Hammond, and the superintendent of education, was named in the act. Hames was subsequently chosen president of the board, and John M. Caldwell, secretary.

The school opened in the fall of , with James G. Ryals, Jr. The first class was graduated in Through the assistance of Dr. In an experimental garden and field was established in connection with the study of botany and physiography. In the trustees arranged a system of scholarships, whereby one person from every county in the State might receive tuition free of charge.

In Mrs. Fannie Atkins made a donation to the school of acres of land and the dwelling thereon in memory of her husband, David Atkins. Legislative History. This was changed by act of February 15, , the governor was added to the board, and upon him was conferred the power of appointment. In Miss Susan Lancaster, a graduate librarian, was engaged. The library at once took its place as a laboratory of real service to both faculty and students, standard rules were substituted for haphazard use, a love of reading was stimulated, and courses offered in library methods and in the use of books.

The library uses the Dewey decimal classification, and is carefully catalogued. It is kept open every day except Sunday. It numbers about 2, volumes. General Details. For details see Normal Schools. Public lecture courses are provided during the sessions. Active branches of the Y. A summer school of 12 full weeks if offered as a permanent part of the school plan. Physical culture courses are required, modeled upon the Ling-Swedish system. The department of rural school work is designed to meet the growing demand for teachers with special preparation for rural work.

Opportunity is given the students to observe work of the rural schools near Jacksonville.

Two of these schools are used as model and practice schools, one at Merrillton and one at Cedar Springs. The effort is made to use the county rural schools of Calhoun as training schools for the teachers of the State enrolled here. A lyceum course is maintained for them, school associations encouraged, industrial work stressed, county supervision had, better teachers, fewer schools, longer terms, and better roads advocated. The efforts put forth by the school in this work are discussed with the pupil teachers.

The vital problems of the rural school which are met and dealt with furnish valuable lessons to them. A county commencement and a fair demonstrate the results obtained and furnish a strong incentive to get the work started in their home counties. Harris Chappell, ; Charles B.

Gibson, ; Jacob Forney, ; Clarence Wm. Daugette, History of education in Alabama , p. Bureau of Education, Bulletin 12 , ; and Publications supra. Additional information, including current history, can be found on the Encyclopedia of Alabama web site. This institution was established in by the late Samuel Noble as a day school for girls. In accordance with his plans, his widow and children erected an adjoining building in which is used as a dormitory for boarding pupils.

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These buildings are of stone and brick, and equipped throughout with steam heat, and are well lighted and ventilated. The school has an excellent library and a good corps of instructors. At different times the following scholarships have been awarded: Wilmer, Spaulding, Tyler, and Grace Church. It is incorporated under the municipal code of It rents all its municipal buildings except the jail and fire department buildings.

The First National Bank is the only banking institution, and the Oxford Tribune, a weekly, its only newspaper. It is the location of the Calhoun County High School. There is a playground or park, occupying a large block in the city, and under the supervision of the school improvement association.

In John L. Dodson founded Oxford College there q. The Piedmont Journal, a Democratic weekly, established in , is published there. Its industries are large cotton mills, 2 cotton ginneries, and a rim-binding factory. It was first called Cross Plains, from its situation on the edge of a plain and at the crossing of two important stagecoach roads. The name was changed to Piedmont about The first settlers were Neal Ferguson, Jacob F. Ledbetter, James Price, Dr.

Teague and Dr. John B. He married Sallie Sara Walker in Due to failing health, he had to resign his position in March He was a deacon at Parker Memorial Baptist Church for many years. He was also a Mason and an Elk. Arnold, W. Cooper, and J. Judge Thomas W. Wilson Coleman.

He married Carrie Arnold in , in Anniston. He was a lawyer, and began his practice in Anniston, Alabama in He was a member of the legislature from - 97; attorney for the City of Anniston from - 99; Judge of the City Court of Anniston from - Judge S. Elbert Boozer was elected, but took office early by appointment, due to the death of Judge Thomas W. Judge G. He was a graduate of Auburn University. Judge Arthur C. Murray, formerly a businessman, was appointed by Governor George C. Wallace as Probate Judge in Judge Murray is among only a few who served as Probate Judge for over thirty years.

Built in with funds donated and collected by the Variosa Club, and organization of civic-minded Alexandria women, it antedated the opening of the Anniston Carnegie Library almost three full years an led the way toward a future expansion of library facilities over all this area. The library and the club are well-nigh inseparable. The club was organized July 21, by Miss Margaret Woodruff, and one of its first activities was to make plans to build a public library. Miss Woodruff died in the spring of , but her work and interest were remembered so vividly by club members that the library, which was opened later that year, was named out of respect for her inspiration.

Up to September, , various members of the club served as librarian; then Mrs. McBride was elected to the office and now directs the library activities. At present there are approximately 1, books in the library, exclusive of several shelves filled with volumes supplied by Mrs. Margaret Edwards, county librarian. Books in the library are available not only to residents of Alexandria and the pupils in the local schools, but they are borrowed weekly by the population of the entire surrounding area, extending over a mile radius.

The library is open two hours on Friday afternoons, and , according to club officials, has been closed only a few times since its beginning. The building, styled with early Colonial effect, is located on the old Anniston- Gadsden highway about one block from the Alexandria Postoffice. The environs of the library are worthy of considerable note, club members having landscaped the grounds with particular charm and made the adjoining natural spring and its roof of symmetrical trees one of the prettiest sites in this section.

The building which was on a level with the road in front until extensive highway work was done several years ago, was raised several feet this spring by the County Board of Revenue as a step toward preserving its eminence. Martin, who has contributed a considerable number of books, and Miss Grace Hardie, who has contributed books and mementoes for many years.

Two Anniston attorneys, J. Willett and L. Liles, addressed the club. Willett recalling many historical incidents of Alexandria Valley and Mr. Liles outlining the graphic changes that have come to the section since his boyhood days there. Liles of Gadsden, spoke to the club and visitors, immediately after the library ceremony, at the old Judge Emmett Crook home, where dinner was served.

The present enrollment is 66 members, with the ultimate club ambition a total of in the organization. It was suggested by Mrs. A copy of the novel was donated to the library by the author upon notification of the honor given his work. The Variosa Club, whose activities include civic, social, domestic and religious aspects, is widely known throughout Alexandria and the surrounding area. At present it consists of 26 members and 10 associate members. Present officers are Mrs. Alex Rowell, treasurer; Mrs. Waldrop, secretary and Mrs.

McBride, librarian. Meharg, who has served as president six times, is the only charter member now in the club. Images of the Woodruff Library as seen in and are provided below. It was fought November 3, , between the hostile Creek Indians collected in the town of Tallaseehatchee, and the forces of Gen. Jackson, under the immediate command of Gen. John Coffee. Jackson was moving his army with difficulty, owing to much needed supplies. Dyer had burned the town of Littafuchee.

Jackson began planning the erection of Fort Strother. Coffee was directed to advance on Tallaseehatchee with men. He was accompanied by Richard Brown and a company of Creeks and Cherokees. The town was situated near the head of the creek of that name, about three miles southwest of Jacksonville. It had about families, and a fighting force of warriors, had only recently been increased by warriors, brought together from the towns below, making an Indian force of fighting men. Coffee surrounded the town about sunrise of November 3. The engagement was swift and bloody. Not an Indian asked to be spared.

There is some discrepancy in the accounts of those engaged, but the Indian killed were warriors who were counted, and 18 Indian women. A number were never counted. Some escaped, and fled toward Oakfushee. Eighty-four women and children, and fourteen hopelessly crippled warriors were taken prisoners. The prisoners were sent to Huntsville. On the same day, Gen. Coffee returned to headquarters. Buell says, p. In his conduct of it, however, he exhibited skill and precision worthy a veteran of many fields.

Coffee was an instinctive soldier, an intuitive general. Long after when his native capacity had been developed in many hard-fought encounters, including the battle of the 23d below New Orleans, Gen. He was born so. Coffee in , Gov. I had almost said New Orleans itself! Upon its issue depended in great measure the morale of our troops, their confidence in their leaders and the buoyancy of spirit that would nerve them to endure the indescribable fatigues and privations to which they were subjected. Lawyer, Founder and Director Alabama State Department of Archives and History, and author of numerous historical and bibliographical publications.

Chicago The S. Clarke Publishing Company Top. Home History. Reference information can be found in each section or at the bottom of this page.