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Central High School - Civil Rights In Little Rock


View Summer, 9-11-2001 - and then the 2nd time down the ICW & 2008 Winter Road Trip & Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

After we toured through the Little Rock Historic District, we went to the Central High School National Historic Site.

I'm old enough to remember when Arkansas Governor Orval E. Faubus tried to stop school integration in Arkansas. In 1957, I was attending Oberlin College which in the 1860s was one of the stops on the Underground Railroad that helped slaves escape from the south. I wasn't sure what we would see if we went to Central High School. It was fairly difficult to find the High School which is an operating high school. as it was tucked away in a residential neighborhood.
100_2834.jpgHouses near Central HS

Houses near Central HS


There is parking at the new (2007) Visitor's Center which is across the street diagonal from the actual school.
National Historic Site

National Historic Site


The new visitor's center was a part of the 50th Anniversary Celebration. The old one had been at an old gas station across the street.
Gas station across from Central HS

Gas station across from Central HS


Reservations are necessary for groups to tour the actual school, but the visitor's center is free.
Visitor's Center entrance

Visitor's Center entrance


When we arrived there was a class of 6th graders there. The Visitor Center contained interactive exhibits on the 1957 desegregation crisis. Eisenhower was President then and when he used federal troops to ensure the rights of African-American children to attend the previously all-white school, he became the first president since the post-Civil War Reconstruction period to use federal troops in support of African-American civil rights.
Photo of that day in September

Photo of that day in September


I was very impressed by the exhibits which contained interactive oral history listening stations.
large_4695986-Visitors_Center_Little_Rock.jpg
How hard it must have been for the Little Rock Nine. In 1999 the Little Rock Nine each received the Congressional Gold Medal-our nation's highest civilian honor-for their efforts to desegregate Little Rock Central High School
NPS Store at the Visitor's Center

NPS Store at the Visitor's Center

Central In Our Lives: Voices from Little Rock

Central In Our Lives: Voices from Little Rock

DVD: Nine From Little Rock ($19.95)

DVD: Nine From Little Rock ($19.95)


Available for sale are books such as "Central In Our Lives: Voices from Little Rock Central High School 1957-1959" ($24.95) which is a compilation of accounts from white students who attended Central during the crisis. I got my passport book stamped.
Central High School

Central High School


Then we drove out toward Memphis.

We got off the Interstate for lunch and I thought we'd go to KFC, but it was behind a Shell station and there was no parking, so we went to Waffle House instead.
Waffle house sign

Waffle house sign

Full House Policy

Full House Policy


Bob's waffle

Bob's waffle

My lunch scrambled eggs toast, bacon, and cheese grits

My lunch scrambled eggs toast, bacon, and cheese grits

Landscape on the west side of the Mississippi

Landscape on the west side of the Mississippi

Posted by greatgrandmaR 13:42 Archived in USA Tagged little_rock historic_site civil_rights segregation

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Comments

I would have been interested to hear the students of the school from that period of time, were any of those in "display" or were they only in the book you could buy?

by hennaonthetrek

I am not sure, but there may have been. I think there were comments from the police.

My sister went to a university in the south (Duke) and it was still segregated at this time. I was luckier.

by greatgrandmaR

I can't imagine how that must have been!

by hennaonthetrek

I can imagine it, but I wish I didn't have to.

by greatgrandmaR

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