I visited the Montgomery, Alabama: New lynching memorial, Legacy Museum and civil rights history. I visited this museum in person a few years ago and just looking at pictures online does not have the same effect that it has on you in person.
This Museum is just stunningly beautiful and sad at the same time. It has a hanging metal banner for many of the counties in the each state in the United States with the name of each person that was lynched and the year that it took place! Looking at each banner, as they go on and on for over a hundred yards.
Outside of the covered building there are many more rows upon rows of metal slabs that continue to show the counties and names and dates of those lynched. It is just mind blowing that so many people were killed unnecessarily! I find it even more astounding that there are records of them! I’m sure that most of this information was in newspapers at the time but it took hours upon hours of investigation to find all of the names of the people who were killed.
There are also several statues outside on the grounds. They show slaves in chains, men, women, and children. It is very powerful.
Just thinking about looking for that type of information makes me believe that this was carried out by multiple people, due to the substantial amount of work and the many hours of looking for and finding relevant information for this museum. People had to go to all of the southeastern states to find this information, which must have been really daunting!
I think this museum was created to bring to light the injustices that have been perpetuated upon people of color, so that the deeds of our fathers won’t be forgotten and repeated! It is for anyone interested in History. It is for everyone! Everyone should go to this place and see the results of racism and hate. They might learn a thing or two.
I think this is a lovely tribute to those who were murdered, in many cases, for a very minor infraction. It tells a story of the people, remembering them forever in a beautiful, permanent display for anyone to come see, or to see online, if they wish.
I think that seeing this in person is more powerful than it is just seeing the pictures of the museum. You can hear the wind blowing when you’re there and feel the breeze. It makes you wonder if those thoughts went through the persons mind as they were being strung up….will I ever hear the wind again or feel it blowing over my skin? Just thinking about what someone was thinking at the end of their life, so unnaturally, makes me sad.
I often wonder if the people who did the lynching of someone ever felt remorse. Did they do it because they felt they had to just to show they weren’t “soft” for blacks? Did they wonder if they had done the right thing? Did they, perhaps, know the person, even just in passing? Do they see that person’s family when they go to town?
When I went there in person it was packed! People were everywhere. Buses just kept coming, bringing more and more people to see this place where history is being preserved! If you haven’t been here yet, please make it a top priority! You won’t regret it.