A Lady of Courage
Born in Tuskegee, AL on February 4, 1913, to James McCauley, a carpenter, and Leona Edwards, a teacher. Moved with mother and brother to Pine Level, AL after parents' separation.
Enrolled in Mrs. White's School for Girls at age 11 and received her high school diploma from Alabama State Teachers College Laboratory High School. Married Montgomery barber Raymond Parks in 1932; both became active in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), which Mrs. Parks served as local chapter secretary. Family relocated to Detroit, MI in 1957 as result of hostility received after her courageous refusal to give up her bus seat. In 1988, the "Mother of the Civil Rights Movement" was inducted as an honorary member into Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, the oldest African American sorority in the nation. Rosa Parks was the sole class of 2008 inductee into the Alabama Women's Hall of Fame.
The Montgomery Bus Boycott
At the stop on this site on December 1, 1955, Mrs. Rosa Parks boarded the bus which would transport her name into history. Returning home after a long day working as a seamstress for Montgomery Fair department store, she refused the bus driver's order to give up her seat to boarding whites. Her arrest, conviction, and fine launched the Montgomery Bus Boycott. The Boycott began December 5, the day of Parks's trial, as a protest by African-Americans for unequal treatment they received on the bus line. Refusing to ride the buses, they maintained the Boycott until the U.S. Supreme Court ordered integration of public transportation one year later. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led the boycott, the beginning of the modern Civil Rights Movement.