On Friday, March 14 Columbia SC 63, an initiative aimed at commemorating and recognizing Columbia’s Civil Rights story, will unveil permanent reminders along Columbia’s Main Street of the fight many individuals endured in the struggle for equality and justice.
“Each wayside sign signifies a defining moment that occurred between the 1940s and 1965 – the height of the Civil Rights Movement,” said Columbia SC 63 lead, historian and University of South Carolina Associate Professor, Dr. Bobby Donaldson. “We felt it necessary to create lasting elements of a time, not too long ago, that told the story of what those who came before us bore for our sake.”
The signs, nine in all, tell the stories of student activism, peaceful protests, marches, demonstrations and racial reconciliation.
“These wayside sigs will allow visitors and locals alike the opportunity to learn of something never documented before – Columbia’s noteworthy Civil Rights story,” said Bill Ellen, interim president and CEO of Columbia CVB. “This element will be a significant addition to the overall story of Columbia’s Civil Rights history.”
The unveiling will take place on Friday, March 14 at 10 a.m. at the corner of Main and Gervais Streets in downtown Columbia, S.C. Guests are invited to participate in the walking tour following the program. For more information about the Columbia SC 63 project or the upcoming unveiling, please visit ColumbiaSC63.com.
Along with the wayside sign unveiling on March 14, Columbia SC 63 will also give three bus tours of important Civil Rights sites and landmarks in downtown Columbia at 10 am, 12 pm and 2 pm on Saturday, March 15, led by USC’s Dr. Bobby Donaldson and Ramon Jackson. While the tours are free, seating is limited, so advance registration is required at CivilRightsBusTours.eventbrite.com.