Birmingham, Alabama 1963

The video below describes non-violent protests in Birmingham, Alabama.

Causes

In January 1963, Martin Luther King announced that there would be a demonstration in Birmingham, Alabama because it was one of the most segregated cities in the USA.

Birmingham was probably best summed up by the Governor, George Wallace who said segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever.

Events

  • 2 May 1963 - children were placed at the front of the march.
  • The Birmingham Police Chief, Bull Connor ordered the arrest of over 900 children.
  • Connor ordered water cannons and dogs to be used on the marchers.
  • Many police and firemen refused to attack the protesters as they looked bad in the media.
  • King was worried about the safety of the demonstrators.
  • Local businessmen were concerned about the drop in trade.

Impact

It was agreed that if the demonstrations stopped, lunch counters, rest rooms and drinking fountains would be desegregated.

The video below looks at an interview with Martin Luther King about desegregation in Birmingham, Alabama 1963.