Birmingham Remembers 1963 Church Bombing

On the 48th anniversary of the blast, a stone marker is dedicated to commemorate the four girls killed.

Posted: 09/16/2011 05:35 PM EDT
Filed Under American History

Thursday marked the 48th anniversary of the Alabama church that was bombed and where four Black girls were killed.

 

On September 15, 1963, Cynthia Wesley, Addie Mae Collins, Carole Robertson and Denise McNair lost their lives to the blast that erupted just before Sunday’s morning worship service.

 

In remembrance of the victims, a stone marker with the girls’ names etched and a Bible verse was dedicated at the site as the crowd of about 100 people sang “We Shall Overcome.” The marker was placed at the spot where the powerful explosive was detonated.

 

"Not a day goes by that we don't have people coming by to ask," Carolyn McKinstry, a childhood friend of the girls told the Associated Press of the tens of thousands of visitors the church receives.

 

Three members of the Ku Klux Klan were convicted years later in the bombing and one remains imprisoned.

 

Till this day McKinstry says that people are fascinated with the violence that took place in Birmingham.

 

The deaths of the girls symbolized the profundity of racism in the South during the embryonic civil rights movement of the 1960s.

 

 

To contact or share story ideas with Danielle Wright, follow and tweet her at @DaniWrightTV.

 

(Photo: Birmingham News/Landov)

From Our Partners