I was born in Montgomery, Alabama on Maxwell AFB. It was in 1963 I entered the world. Visiting family annually is a usual tradition for me and I make it a point to take in a few of the sites when back to my hometown. The city had begun a restorative process a few years back showcasing its rich history. These are a proud people in a new generation wanting to bring truth to light. The National Memorial for Peace and Justice does that and is quite sobering.
While home in Seattle (where I have lived for 25 years) , I had the radio on NPR and the discussion centered around Montgomery, Alabama’s new museum The National Memorial for Peace and Justice . Its opening coincided with my upcoming trip so I put it on my radar to check it out. Montgomery, Alabama is a spread out city of rich history, strong values (maybe not yours), and a welcoming people.
While on the second leg of my trip from Atlanta to Montgomery , I had the pleasure to sit next to a cardiologist considering a move to the city. We talked of its robust history and what living in this area might be like for him. He was a young gentleman from Pakistan originally . He asked me questions about the city that I warmly answered and I asked him questions how I should control my blood pressure. Fair trade I thought.
When we landed we said our farewells, but our conversation made me think about how misunderstood a place could be if not fully understood from a time in history (that we can not fathom) until today. It is only natural it identify a place to its history. Montgomery is more than that. Much more. If you drive though the south, consider a stop over to downtown and see history. If you are history buff as myself, you will have a hard time with just one day. Get a hotel room and stay two. I am repeating in my top spots to call ahead in advance for museum hours. You do not want to come to the area to be disappointed because they are closed.
Top spots to check out:
- Do a walking tour of downtown and get a layout of the landscape of the city.
- Walk in the Union Station and check out the Riverwalk.
- Buy tickets for the National Memorial for Peace and Justice. It is $10.
- This is for two museums. It will take you at least 2 hours to see each one.
- Take in the Rosa Parks Museum and make sure to call a head for times open.
- Parking is very cheap.
- The Alley has great places to eat.