Civil Rights

When Emmett Till was murdered in 1955, the people of Mississippi found themselves at the forefront of one of the most pivotal periods of American history. This tragic event is widely considered the igniting spark of the modern Civil Rights movement. While the death of Emmett Till made national headlines, it was not the only event to set the scene for this great struggle. Only months before Till’s death, Reverend George Lee of Belzoni was assassinated after registering to vote. Other events in Mississippi, from the murder of Medgar Evers in 1963 to the killing of the three Civil Rights workers in Neshoba County the following year, rallied those involved with the Civil Rights movement and brought more people to the cause. Half a century later, Mississippi is the embodiment of changing times. Today, Mississippi has more elected African-American officials than any other state in the country, as the civil rights movement continues as a strong element of political, social and daily life.

The new, interactive Mississippi Civil Rights Museum in Jackson explores the true stories of the Civil Rights movement, and shows how those events shaped a state and changed the world. Once you visit the museum, venture to some of the 25 sites on the Mississippi Freedom Trail to experience history at the source.

Greenwood Civil Rights Sites and Mississippi Freedom Trail Markers

Greenwood, MS

During the 1960s, Greenwood was a hotbed of civil rights activity, including visits by Dr. Martin Luther King and Stokely Carmichael, who first used the slogan “black power” at a speech on Broad Street, a site now marked on Mississippi’s […]

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James Meredith Freedom Trail Marker

Hernando, MS

This Freedom Trail marker commemorates Civil Rights activist James Meredith, who was shot in Hernando, MS June 6, 1966. Meredith was leading the March Against Fear to encourage African Americans to exercise their voting rights when he was shot and […]

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Jacqueline House Museum

Vicksburg, MS

Vicksburg’s only museum for the study of history and culture of people of African descent features a collection of over 20,000 items. In addition, the collection houses selected artifacts, including items dating back to the slave period. […]

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Bethel AME Church

Vicksburg, MS

The first African Methodist Episcopal Church in Mississippi and the first Masonic Lodge in Mississippi were organized here in 1875. In 1890, Campbell College, the first African American College in Mississippi established without the aid of whites, operated out of […]

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Beulah Cemetery

Vicksburg, MS

The only African-American cemetery in the city was established by the Vicksburg Tabernacle # 19 Independent Order of Brothers and Sisters of Love and Charity around 1884. There are more than 5,500 graves scattered across the grassy tree-studded cemetery, which […]

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Medgar and Myrlie Evers Home National Monument

Jackson, MS

The Medgar and Myrlie Evers Home National Monument, also known as Medgar Evers House, is a historic house museum at 2332 Margaret Walker Alexander Drive in Jackson, Mississippi. Built in 1956, it was the home of African-American civil rights activist […]

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