Alabama Tourism Agency Launches Civil Rights Podcast

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama's state tourism agency has launched a podcast that both tells stories about the civil rights movement and encourages people to visit places linked to the era.

The three-part Alabama Civil Rights Podcast, available through the Alabama Tourism Department website and other sites where podcasts are available, mentions prominent sites including the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church in Montgomery; Selma's Edmund-Pettus Bridge and 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham.

Episodes explore topics including the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and nonviolence; the groundbreaking Freedom Rides of 1961; the Birmingham campaign of 1963; and the Selma-to-Montgomery voting rights march of 1965. Listeners can find details about visiting those sites and others through the agency's website.

“Our goal is for listeners to learn more about the history of the movement and how Alabama played a critical role in shaping voting rights and equality for everyone,” Lee Sentell, the state tourism director, said in a statement.

Civil rights tourism has become big business in cities including Birmingham and Montgomery, where thousands each year visit places including Alabama's Capitol, the Dexter Avenue church, which was the first pastorate of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., and the national lynching memorial.