from Private Civil Rights Tour of Atlanta
Walk in the footsteps of Martin Luther King through the heartlands of the Civil Rights Movement in Atlanta where racial integration and equality had a spiritual home and King first had “his dream”.
On your private Civil Rights Tour of Atlanta, you will:
- See Dr King’s birthplace in Auburn Avenue, just one of several buildings that make up the Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site.
- Visit the site of King’s baptism and funeral - the Ebenezer Baptist Church - which has become the most meaningful symbol of civil rights in America.
- Learn how Martin Luther King Jr. Day became an annual US federal holiday.
- See the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) Headquarters.
- Discover the events that led to the Montgomery Bus Boycott.
- Experience Prince Hall Grand Lodge, a hidden treasure of the Civil Rights Movement.
- Hear how the struggle for equality continues to this day, and how Atlanta is grappling with necessary change.
- Enjoy a snack and a drink at a place recommended by your guide.
- Finish your tour at the King Center - where your guide will leave you to explore at your own leisure.
Known as “The Cradle of the Civil Rights Movement,” Atlanta emerged as the epicentre for activism from 1940 to 1970 when it became the cultural catalyst for freedom without discrimination or repression. Black leaders called for voting rights, access to public facilities and institutions, and economic and educational opportunities for African Americans. The civil rights movement had a spiritual home in Atlanta, specifically in the Sweet Auburn district, where the influence of Martin Luther King Jr. and his wife on civil rights history can still be felt to this day. It is here that King first had “his dream” while honing a particularly powerful speech that would have a seismic impact on US race relations.
Segregation, inequality and discrimination once defined the city, a policy firmly established and backed by state law, just as elsewhere in the South. Atlanta had a more progressive attitude to racial integration to the rest of America’s South, even prior to the Civil Rights Movement. It had appointed several black officials, desegregated public transport (in 1959) and inching towards wider social and political change.
By the early 1960s, Sweet Auburn had become the hub for the activism that would go on to power the city’s remarkable civil rights journey.