Contact: Andi Martin, Marketing and Public Relations Manager, 334-230-2680


September 12, 2019


Freedom Rides Museum Welcomes Hezekiah Watkins,

the Youngest Freedom Rider, for Weekend Events in Alabama


(Montgomery, AL) On Friday, September 13, join the Alabama Historical Commission and the Freedom Rides Museum in welcoming Hezekiah Watkins, the youngest Freedom Rider, to Alabama. As part of his visit to Montgomery, Watkins will be meeting with Montgomery area school children to share his story and inspire the next generation of 13-year-olds set to change history. Media are invited to this photo and interview opportunity Mr. Watkins between 8:30am and 9:00am.

Hezekiah Watkins was on summer break between 8th and 9th grade when he was pushed into history, becoming the youngest person arrested during the 1961 Freedom Rides. Five days inside a Mississippi death row cell transformed him from a comic book-loving kid into a lifelong activist. Watkins was recently awarded the Civil Rights Legends Award from the International Association of Official Human Rights Agencies.

On Saturday, September 14, Watkins will be at The Freedom Rides Museum from 11:00am-12:30pm to share insights from his new memoir, Pushing Forward. Hear his moving story and learn more about youth activism in 1960s Mississippi. This is a family-friendly event that will be especially powerful for middle and high school students.

Regular museum admission rates apply. The Freedom Rides Museum is located at 210 South Court Street in Montgomery. This event is co-sponsored by the Friends of the Freedom Rides Museum.

About the Freedom Rides Museum
Working with concerned citizens, The Alabama Historical Commission saved the Greyhound Bus Station from demolition in the mid-1990s. The Museum is located at the intersection of S. Court St. and Adams Avenue in downtown Montgomery. An award-winning exhibit on the building's exterior traces the Freedom Riders' history. It uses words and images of the Freedom Riders, those who supported them, and those who opposed them. Interior exhibits highlight additional information on the Freedom Riders and the way in which buildings were designed for racial segregation. Today, the Alabama Historical Commission operates this significant site.


About the Alabama Historical Commission

Located in historic downtown Montgomery at 468 S. Perry Street, the Alabama Historical Commission is the state historic preservation agency for Alabama. The agency was created by an act of the state legislature in 1966 with a mission to protect, preserve and interpret Alabama‚Äôs historic places. AHC works to accomplish its mission through two fields of endeavor: Preservation and promotion of state-owned historic sites as public attractions; and, statewide programs to assist people, groups, towns, and cities with local preservation activities. For a complete list of programs and properties owned and operated by the AHC, hours of operation, and admission fees please visit  


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