The route from Montgomery to Selma has been designated a National Historic Trail. The town's name became internationally recognized in 1965 when, on "Bloody Sunday," state troopers clashed with civil-rights activists participating in the historic Selma-to-Montgomery protest march. The Brown Chapel A.M.E. Church and King Monument, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was the headquarters for the historical walk. At the foot of the Edmund Pettus Bridge is the National Voting Rights Museum filled with history of the struggle during that turbulent period. Phone 334-418-0800.
A century earlier, the city was a major arsenal of the Confederacy. Much of it was destroyed in the course of the war, but several vintage buildings can be seen in a visit to the Old Town Historic District. Among the older structures still standing are Smitherman Historic Building, a Greek Revival structure that was once a Confederate hospital; Sturdivant Hall Museum, a restored antebellum mansion dating from 1853 (phone 334-872-5626. http://www.sturdivanthall.com); and the Old Depot Museum, containing Civil War and civil-rights memorabilia (phone 334-874-2197). About 12 mi/19 km from Selma is Old Cahawba Archaeological Park, the site of the first permanent state capital. http://www.cahawba.com. Selma is 35 mi/55 km west of Montgomery.
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