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Friday, December 11, 2009

~~~ Litttle Rock Part II ~~~

After visiting the Clinton Presidential Library we checked out a few other sites in Little Rock. There were several thing we wanted to see & do but couldn't get them all accomplished in one day. We always try to visit the State Capitals and so off to the Little Rock State Capital Building we went. Here is a picture of Capital building which shows you how grand and impressive this building was. We usually like to take the tour inside but arrived there to late to do it.

We also visited Little Rock Central High School National Historic Landmark. Built in 1927 , it was the focal point of the Little Rock Integration Crisis of 1957. Nine African-American students, known as the Little Rock Nine, were denied entrance to the school in defiance of the 1954 U.S. Supreme Court ruling ordering integration of public schools. This provoked a showdown between the Governor Orval Faubus and President Dwight D. Eisenhower that gained international attention. On the morning of September 23, 1957, the nine African-American high school students faced an angry mob of over 1,000 Americans protesting integration in front of Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. As the students were escorted inside by the Little Rock police, violence escalated and they were removed from the school. The next day, President Dwight D. Eisenhower ordered the 1,200-man 327th Airborne Battle Group of the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division from Fort Campbell, Kentucky, to escort the nine students into the school. By the same order, the entire 10,000 man Arkansas National Guard was sent, to remove them from the control of Governor Faubus. At nearby Camp Robinson, a hastily organized Task Force 153rd Infantry drew guardsmen from units all over the state. Most of the Arkansas Guard was quickly demobilized, but the Task Force 153 Infantry assumed control at Thanksgiving when the 327th withdrew, and patrolled inside and outside the school for the remainder of the school year. As Melba Pattillo Beals, one of the nine students, remembered, and quoted in her book, "After three full days inside Central High School, I know that integration is a much bigger word than I thought." Little Rock Central HS was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on August 19, 1977, and was designated a National Historic Landmark on May 20, 1982. The school itself continues to be used as an educational facility. I was to young to remember the severity of this event and was shocked over details inside the museum that I read. It was one small step to the beginning of unity & equal rights in this country.

On our way out of town we decided to look for a pedestrian walk over a dam that someone we met had told us about. The Big Dam Bridge is built over the Arkansas River and is 4,226 feet long, the bridge over the Corps of Engineers' Murray Lock and Dam is the longest bridge built specifically for pedestrians and bicyclists in the world (the longest in the United States is the Chain of Rocks Bridge on the north edge of St. Louis, Missouri at 5,350 feet, but it was originally a highway bridge). The bridge connects about 17 miles of trail in the cities of Little Rock and North Little Rock, bridging the Arkansas River from Little Rock's Murray Park to North Little Rock's Cooks Landing. Sadly we didn't get a chance to walk up onto the bridge itself.

This was the rest of our day while visiting Little Rock... It is a wonderful city with historic landmarks, a Presidential Library and much more to see & do. We really wanted to visit the Riverside area but never made it there. Don't forget that to get a closer look at any of the photos just click on it and they will open up larger.

Until Later... Have FUN & enjoy life!!!


Rick said...

Donna, thanks for the great informative post today, it was terrific. I was just 13 or so but I still remember watching the Little Rock integration crisis on TV. It was a turning point in American history for sure and it would be great to see the place where it happened. Thankfully, times have sure changed.

Love Bears All Things said...

I'm happy that you are feeling well enough to visit the sites again.
It makes me sad to think about the prejudice of Americans toward those of other races, both African-American and Native American. Such a non-Christian attitude. What a large High School that is. Looks more like a college.
That is a long walk over the river. Did you walk it?
Hoping you're having wonderful days leading up to Christmas.
Mama Bear

Hootin' Anni said...

Fascinating!!! Now, I'm not so sure I could say I'd like the big dam bridge tho.

Lovely, wonderful photos!

Anonymous said...

Have you ever figured out how many state capitols you have visited? This was like a history lesson. Very informative, now if I could only remember some of it. :) Great photos too. And yes, you should come home to our warm sunny weather. Of course, be prepared to turn your air on for a cold Christmas.

Love ya and miss ya,

Happytrails said...

Another great walk through history, thanks Donna. I also enjoyed the visual tour as well. Our country is just full of so many historic places to visit and that is what makes this lifestyle so wonderful.
Take care and travel safely.


Margie M. said...

Thanks for the great tour of the capital and environs. The high school was particularly interesting. Glad you had such a great time.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

I now know all about Arkansas! I remember the integration all too well. I was living in South Georgia and the county I lived in fought it. Seems like much ado about nothing significant now. Skin color matters so little to most of us.

Tootsie said...

you always take us on such great adventures!!! what a beautiful building!!!
have a great weekend friend

Wandering Willy said...

Donna,great informative post as always.You have a fantastic blog layout.I wish I had your kind of know-how.

SmilingSally said...

I remember the integration of Little Rock and how the soldiers walked the children to school. It was a scary time.

Justine said...

Well Waaaaaaaaaaaaa! The first half of your post made me incredibly sad. That ANYONE needed military intervention to enjoy the HUMAN right of education just blows me away. I wish I could meet those 9 students and give each and every one of them a huge hug for what they had to endure.

Justine :o )

John Z Wetmore said...

Too bad you didn't make it up onto the Big Dam Bridge. If you ever get back, you don't need to walk the whole way across to enjoy it. Just getting to the top of the bridge gives you a fantastic view up and down the Arkansas River.


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