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Memorandum of Understanding Between U.S. Department of Transportation,
Federal Highway Administration and
U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service.

To Foster Cooperation and Joint Activities Along the Selma to Montgomery
National Historic Trail and the Selma to Montgomery All-American Road

Whereas, on September 19, 1996, the Secretary of Transportation designated the Selma to Montgomery Scenic Byway as an All-American Road under the National Scenic Byways Program.

Whereas, the National Park Omnibus Act of 1996 officially established the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail, consisting of 54 miles of city streets and United States Highway 80 from Crown Chapel A.M.E. Church in Selma to the State Capitol Building in Montgomery, Alabama.

Whereas, U. S. 80 was the scene of the 1965 Voting Rights March, led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., to secure equal voting rights for African Americans.

Whereas, when the Voting Rights March reached the State Capitol Building in Montgomery on March 25, 1965, Dr. King addressed the marchers, saying, "Let us march on to the realization of the American dream. Let us march on the ballot boxes, march on poverty, march on segregated schools and segregated housing, march on until racism is annihilated and America can live at peace with its conscience. That will be a day not of the white man, not of the black man. That will be the day of man as man. How long will it take? I come to say to you this afternoon, however difficult the moment, however, frustrating the hour, it will not be long, because truth pressed to earth will rise again."

Whereas, the Selma to Montgomery March helped inspire congressional passage of voting rights legislation that President Lyndon Johnson signed on August 6, 1965, empowering African Americans and all Americans to cast their ballot for the American dream of which Dr. King spoke.

Whereas, the Federal Highway Administration is delegated the responsibility to administer the National Scenic Byways Program.

Whereas, the National Park Omnibus Act designated the National Park Service (NPS) to be the lead Federal agency in administering this Trail as part of the National Trails System.

Whereas, the Parks Omnibus Act directs the NPS to cooperate with other Federal, State, and local authorities to preserve historic sites along the route.

Now Therefore Be It Resolved, that the Federal Highway Administration and the National Park Service will coordinate program plans, resources, and technical assistance associated with designation of U.S. 80 from Selma to Montgomery as an All-American Road and a National Historic Trail to maintain, enhance, and interpret the national historic significance of the highway, of the events associated with the 1965 Voting Rights March, and of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and other civil rights advocates who marched along the route and who agreed with Dr. King when he said on March 25, 1965, that "the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice."

Original signed by:

____________________________
Administrator
Federal Highway Administration

Witnessed by:

Original signed by:

_____________________________
Secretary
Department of Transporation

 

Original signed by:

____________________________
Director
National Park Service

Original signed by:

_____________________________
Secretary
Department of Interior

 


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United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration