NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Pieces of a Civil Rights plaque broken during a protest in downtown Nashville in 2020 were dedicated Tuesday to Fisk University.
The pieces will be part of a new exhibit at the Fisk University John Hope and Aurelia Elizabeth E. Franklin Library.
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In the summer of 2020, a protest in downtown Nashville in response to the death of George Floyd became violent and destructive and the permanent Civil Rights plaque near the Historic Courthouse was broken.
Pieces of the plaque were then used to break courthouse windows, according to a release.
The Civil Rights plaque was originally dedicated on April 19, 1995 and commemorated the 1960 desegregation of Nashville. On the morning of April 19, 1960, the home of black Councilman Z. Alexander Looby was bombed and several thousand marchers walked to the Metro Courthouse in protest. Mayor Ben West met them there and told the crowd, in a public exchange with Fisk University student Diane Nash, shop owners were wrong to sell to Black residents while denying them service at lunch counters.
The pieces of the plaque will be part of a new, permanent exhibit in the Special Collections and Archives area of the John Hope and Aurelia Elizabeth E. Franklin Library, which will include a digital display with a documentary about desegregation of Nashville and the historical significance of the plaque, according to a release.
During the dedication ceremony, Mayor John Cooper, Fisk President Vann Newkirk, Council-At-Large Sharon Hurt, Jianne McDonald with K & L Gates, and Spencer Fane attorney William J “Paz” Haynes, III spoke.