6 The city of Fayetteville has been inducted onto the North Carolina Civil Rights Trail after city staff and religious, educational and local non-profit organizations partnered to highlight the 1963 protests against segregation.

The city will host a ceremony to unveil the Civil Rights marker on June 16 at 11 a.m. at 116 Green St., where City Hall was located in 1963. The marker will be installed outside of the southwest corner of the Fascinate-U museum.

“I am elated we are able to have Fayetteville placed onto this significant and innovative trail highlighting historic advancement throughout our state,” said Mayor Mitch Colvin. “This accomplishment is a true testament of collaboration between our community, our city, and the great state of North Carolina showing what we can achieve when we work together.”

The marker commemorates the leadership of protest organizers and the courage of each participant.

During the summer of 1963, residents organized various activities protesting racial segregation in Fayetteville. Often, demonstrations like picketing and marching culminated in the downtown area, where they also conducted sit-ins at businesses along Hay Street.

The community’s actions resulted in the necessary political pressure to influence elected leadership to enact policy directing businesses to desegregate Fayetteville, one year prior to the 1964 Civil Rights Act being adopted by the federal government.

The city’s Special Projects Manager Brook Redding worked closely with a group of community stakeholders to complete the application. The N.C. Civil Rights Trail program accepted the city’s application in October 2022 after six months of development.

The N.C. African American Heritage Commission leads the N.C. Civil Rights Trail with funding from the William G. Pomeroy Foundation, and with support from Visit North Carolina and the North Carolina Office of Archives & History.

The commission works with communities across the state to designate up to 50 sites where trail markers are being placed, including 10 in Hometown Strong communities.

An interactive web portal highlights these places and others to guide people to history and experiences from the past.
To learn more about the project or to apply for a marker, please visit https://aahc.nc.gov/programs/nc-civil-rights-trail/nc-civil-rights-virtual-trail

N.C. African American Commission

Created in 2008, the African American Heritage Commission is a division of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. The Commission works to preserve, protect and promote the state’s African American history, art and culture.

Its endeavors include the identification of heritage sites, compiling resources for educators, extending the work of national programs such as the National Park Service’s Network to Freedom Underground Railroad, and independent initiatives including the NC Civil Rights Trail.

North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources

The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina.

NCDNCR's mission is to improve the quality of life by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina. Efforts seek to stimulate learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the state’s history, conserving the state’s natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development.

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