The Book The Book Order

After the March

In the months following the Children’s March, many changes, both good and bad, occurred in Birmingham. The Alabama Supreme Court unanimously ruled Albert Boutwell the winner of the mayoral election, putting Bull Connor out of a job. Slowly, local businesses began to desegregate. Mayor Boutwell desegregated some public facilities as well.

In July, the city council overturned the infamous Segregation Ordinances.

Across the country, nearly 15,000 demonstrators, most of them young people, took part in at least 758 nonviolent protests in 186 cities throughout the spring and summer. On August 28, 1963, approximately 250,000 people participated in the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

But negative responses continued as well. On May 11, both A.D. King’s parsonage and the Gaston Motel were bombed. Fortunately, no one was killed, but Birmingham exploded in riots.

On Sunday, September 16, Sixteenth Street Baptist Church was bombed. Four little girls were killed and another twenty people were injured. The tragedy propelled President Kennedy and his successor, President Lyndon B. Johnson, to push relentlessly for the Civil Rights Bill, which became law the following summer.

Bombings | Changes | National Impact | Sixteenth Street Baptist Church Bombing

Photo: Exterior damage to Sixteenth Street Baptist Church following the 1963 bombing. ©Birmingham, Ala. Public Library Archives (File #85.1.18). Used with permission.