Founders of Birmingham Urban League recall Alabama in 1960s

Feb 12, 2013

The Urban League was just one of many civil rights groups working in Alabama during the 1960s. Above, NAACP attorney Arthur Shores' Birmingham house after it was bombed in 1963.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Alabama in the 1960s was at the heart of the Civil Rights Movement. The bus boycotts, the marches, the sit-ins, the snarling dogs and gushing fire hoses -- many of that era’s iconic moments happened in Alabama.

Under the leadership of Whitney Young, the National Urban League, which is one of our country’s oldest civil rights organizations, joined the NAACP, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and others in the fight to end Jim Crow segregation in the Deep South.

Our guests today were dispatched by Mr. Young to open an Urban League chapter in Birmingham, Ala. in 1965.

The chapter's former deputy director, Willard Walker, and former director, Clarence Wood, of the recall their work in Alabama in the 1960s and remember Whitney Young.

Mr. Walker will also be featured as a guest speaker on WKAR's panel discussion following a short preview of the upcoming PBS Independent Lens documentary “Powerbroker: Whitney Young’s Fight for Civil Rights” on Feb 13 at 7 p.m.