Birmingham, in History: September 15, 1963

LaDawn Sullivan, Board Chair, reflects on how Birmingham’s history, civil rights and nonviolence resonate in our world and our work today.

September 15th marked the morning that 49 years ago, a church

from the 16th Street Church in Birmingham

4 Little Girls from Birmingham’s 16th Street Church

bombing in Birmingham, Alabama resulted in the death of four precious little girls: Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Denise McNair.

The pain and outrage of this senseless loss of innocent lives was a driving force for the demand for change on every level of our society – in how we act, think, govern and feel towards one another.

As the African American history portal, states:

The attack was meant to disrupt black community activists who had been demonstrating for weeks for an end to segregation in the city. It had the opposite effect. Because the four young girls killed were on their way to a basement assembly hall for closing prayers on a Sunday morning, the national public’s anger and revulsion at the slaughter of children at a place of worship helped build support in the John Kennedy administration for civil rights legislation….
Sixteenth Street Baptist Church had been a rallying point for civil rights activists throughout the spring and summer leading up to the bombing.

In two weeks, giving circles made up of like-minded donors of color from across the country will convene in Birmingham at the Community Investment Network Conference — to learn and share collective ways to positively impact our communities. We hope returning to a place steeped in the struggles of our past will seed creative, strategic, philanthropic solutions to continue on our path to an inclusive, just, and equitable future for ALL!

Please join us from October 4-7. Go to the conference website for more details! Register for the conference where you can select a three-day, one-day or half-day pass; and which Bus or Walking Tour you would like to choose during the conference.

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