Attempts Continue to Be Added to National Parks List

Friday, October 28, 2016

A former Freedom Rider talks about efforts to give official designation to Anniston for the events that put the city in the center of the Civil Rights Movement. U.S. Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell and Director of National Park Services, Jonathan Jarvis toured Anniston today. Their visit will help determine whether to add two sites in the city to the national parks list. The officials toured the Greyhound bus station on Gurnee Avenue and the site off Highway 202 where protesters firebombed a bus carrying a group of men and women challenging segregation on public buses. Hank Thomas was among those Freedom Riders that day back in 1961 and he says he wants his actions to make a difference. After the tour, members of the community were invited to meet with local and federal officials to talk about the significance of the iconic sites. Freedom Riders Park Committee Chairman, Pete Conroy says the work is just getting started and there’s a long way to go. The federal officials also visited Birmingham today. It’s a move that many think signifies President Obama is ready to designate these Alabama sites as National Parks before he leaves office. There’s no word on when a decision might be announced.

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