MONTGOMERY, Ala. —Inspired by the Holocaust Museum in Berlin, the National Memorial For Peace & Justice opens tomorrow in Alabama.
“The National Memorial for Peace and Justice, which opens Thursday on a six-acre site overlooking the Alabama State Capitol, is dedicated to the victims of American white supremacy. And it demands a reckoning with one of the nation’s least recognized atrocities: the lynching of thousands of black people in a decades-long campaign of racist terror.”
Photos by Audra Melton for the New York Times
“Mr. Stevenson and a small group of lawyers spent years immersing themselves in archives and county libraries to document the thousands of racial terror lynchings across the South. They have cataloged nearly 4,400 in total.
Inspired by the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin and the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg, Mr. Stevenson decided that a single memorial was the most powerful way to give a sense of the scale of the bloodshed. But also at the site are duplicates of each steel column, lined up in rows like coffins, intended to be disseminated around the country to the counties where lynchings were carried out. People in these counties can request them — dozens of such requests have already been made — but they must show that they have made efforts locally to “address racial and economic injustice.”
For Mr. Stevenson, the plans for the memorial and an accompanying museum were rooted in decades spent in Alabama courtrooms, witnessing a criminal justice system that treats African-Americans with particular cruelty, or indifference,” (NYTimes).
Read the full article: