Selma is a city in and the county seat of Dallas County, in the Black
Belt region of south central
Alabama and extending to the west.
Located on the banks of the
Alabama River, the city has a population
of 20,756 as of the 2010 census.
The city is best known for the 1960s Selma Voting Rights Movement and
the Selma to Montgomery marches, beginning with "Bloody Sunday" in
March 1965 and ending with 25,000 people entering Montgomery at the
end of the last march to press for voting rights. This activism
generated national attention to social justice and that summer, the
Voting Rights Act of 1965
Voting Rights Act of 1965 was passed by Congress to authorize federal
oversight and enforcement of constitutional rights of all citizens.
It had been a trading center and market town during the years of King
Cotton in the South. It was also an important armaments manufacturing
and iron shipbuilding center during the Civil War, surrounded by miles
of earthen fortifications. The Confederate forces were defeated during
the Battle of Selma.
1.1 Selma during the Civil War
1.1.1 Battle of Selma
2 Post-war period
3 Twentieth century
3.1 Selma Voting Rights Movement
7 Arts and culture
7.2 Museums and points of interest
11.1 Radio stations
11.2 Television stations
12 Notable people
14 In popular culture
16 Additional reading
17 External links
Before settlement by European peoples, the area of present-day Selma
had been inhabited for thousands of years by varying cultures of
indigenous peoples. The Europeans encountered the historic Native
American people known as the Muscogee (also known as the Creek), who
had been in the area for hundreds of years.
French explorers and colonists were the first Europeans to explore
this area. In 1732, they recorded the site of present-day Selma as
Écor Bienville. Later Anglo-Americans called it the Moore's Bluff
settlement. Selma was incorporated in 1820. The city was planned and
named as Selma by William R. King, a politician and planter from North
Carolina who was a future Vice President of the United States. The
name, meaning "high seat" or "throne", came from the Ossianic poem
The Songs of Selma.
Selma during the Civil War
Main article: Selma, Alabama, in the Civil War
During the Civil War, Selma was one of the South's main military
manufacturing centers, producing tons of supplies and munitions, and
building Confederate warships such as the ironclad Tennessee. The
Selma iron works and foundry was considered the second-most important
source of weaponry for the South, after the
Tredegar Iron Works
Tredegar Iron Works in
Richmond, Virginia. This strategic concentration of manufacturing
capabilities eventually made Selma a target of Union raids into
Alabama late in the Civil War.
Because of its military importance, Selma had been fortified by three
miles of earthworks that ran in a semicircle around the city. They
were anchored on the north and south by the
Alabama River. The works
had been built two years earlier, and while neglected for the most
part since, were still formidable. They were 8 feet (2.4 m) to 12
feet (3.7 m) high, 15 feet (4.6 m) thick at the base, with a
ditch 4 feet (1.2 m) wide and 5 feet (1.5 m) deep along the
front. In front of this was a 5 feet (1.5 m) high picket fence of
heavy posts planted in the ground and sharpened at the top. At
prominent positions, earthen forts were built with artillery in
position to cover the ground over which an assault would have to be
The North had learned of the importance of Selma to the Confederate
military, and Federal military planned to take the city. Gen. William
Tecumseh Sherman first made an effort to reach it, but after advancing
from the west as far as Meridian, Mississippi, within 107 miles
(172 km) of Selma, his forces retreated back to the Mississippi
River. Gen. Benjamin Grierson, invading with a cavalry force from
Memphis, Tennessee, was intercepted and returned; Gen. Rousseau made a
dash in the direction of Selma, but was misled by his guides and
struck the railroad forty miles east of Montgomery.
Battle of Selma
Union General James H. Wilson
Main article: Battle of Selma
On March 30, 1865, Union General
James H. Wilson
James H. Wilson detached Gen. John T.
Croxton's brigade to destroy all Confederate property at Tuscaloosa,
Alabama. Wilson's forces captured a Confederate courier, who was found
to be carrying dispatches from Confederate General Nathan Bedford
Forrest describing his scattered forces. Wilson sent a brigade to
destroy the bridge across the
Cahaba River at Centreville, which cut
off most of Forrest's reinforcements from reaching the area. He began
a running fight with Forrest's forces that did not end until after the
fall of Selma.
On the afternoon of April 1, after skirmishing all morning, Wilson's
advanced guard ran into Forrest's line of battle at Ebenezer Church,
where the Randolph Road intersected the main Selma road. Forrest had
hoped to bring his entire force to bear on Wilson. Delays caused by
flooding, plus earlier contact with the enemy, resulted in Forrest
mustering fewer than 2,000 men, many of whom were not war veterans but
home militia consisting of old men and young boys.
The outnumbered and outgunned Confederates fought for more than an
hour as reinforcements of Union cavalry and artillery were deployed.
Forrest was wounded by a saber-wielding Union captain, whom he shot
and killed with his revolver. Finally, a Union cavalry charge broke
the Confederate militia, causing Forrest to be flanked on his right.
He was forced to retreat.
Confederate General Nathan B. Forrest
Early the next morning, Forrest reached Selma; he advised Gen. Richard
Taylor, departmental commander, to leave the city. Taylor did so after
giving Forrest command of the defense. Selma was protected by
fortifications that circled much of the city; it was protected on the
north and south by the
Alabama River. The wall was high and deep,
surrounded by a ditch and picket fence. Earthen forts were built to
cover the grounds with artillery fire.
Forrest's defenders consisted of his Tennessee escort company,
McCullough's Missouri Regiment, Crossland's Kentucky Brigade, Roddey's
Alabama Brigade, Frank Armstrong's Mississippi Brigade, General Daniel
W. Adams' state reserves, and the citizens of Selma who were
"volunteered" to man the works. Altogether this force numbered less
than 4,000. As the Selma fortifications were built to be defended by
20,000 men, Forrest's soldiers had to stand 10 to 12 feet (3.7 m)
apart to try to cover the works.
Wilson's force arrived in front of the Selma fortifications at 2 p.m.
He had placed Gen. Eli Long's Division across the Summerfield Road
with the Chicago Board of Trade Battery in support. Gen. Emory Upton's
Division was placed across the Range Line Road with Battery I, 4th US
Artillery in support. Altogether Wilson had 9,000 troops available for
The Federal commander's plan was for Upton to send in a 300-man
detachment after dark to cross the swamp on the Confederate right;
enter the works, and begin a flanking movement toward the center
moving along the line of fortifications. A single gun from Upton's
artillery would signal the attack to be undertaken by the entire
At 5 p.m., however, Gen. Eli Long's ammunition train in the rear was
attacked by advance elements of Forrest's scattered forces approaching
Selma. Both Long and Upton had positioned significant numbers of
troops in their rear for just such an event. But, Long decided to
begin his assault against the Selma fortifications to neutralize the
enemy attack in his rear.
Long's troops attacked in a single rank in three main lines,
dismounted and shooting their Spencer's carbines, supported by their
own artillery fire. The Confederates replied with heavy small arms and
artillery fire. The Southern artillery had only solid shot on hand,
while a short distance away was an arsenal which produced tons of
canister, a highly effective anti-personnel ammunition.
St. Paul's Episcopal Church, burned following the
Battle of Selma
Battle of Selma and
rebuilt in 1871
The Federals suffered many casualties (including General Long) but
continued their attack. Once the Union Army reached the works, there
was vicious hand-to-hand fighting. Many soldiers were struck down with
clubbed muskets, but they kept pouring into the works with their
greater numbers. In less than 30 minutes, Long's men had captured the
works protecting the Summerfield Road.
Meanwhile, General Upton, observing Long's success, ordered his
division forward. They succeeded in overmounting the defenses and soon
U.S. flags could be seen waving over the works from Range Line Road to
After the outer works fell, General Wilson led the 4th U.S. Cavalry
Regiment in a mounted charge down the Range Line Road toward the
unfinished inner line of works. The retreating Confederate forces,
upon reaching the inner works, united and fired repeatedly together
into the charging column. This broke up the charge and sent General
Wilson sprawling to the ground when his favorite horse was wounded. He
quickly remounted his stricken horse and ordered a dismounted assault
by several regiments.
Mixed units of Confederate troops had also occupied the Selma railroad
depot and the adjoining banks of the railroad bed to make a stand next
to the Plantersville Road (present day Broad Street). The fighting
there was heavy, but by 7 p.m. the superior numbers of Union troops
had managed to flank the Southern positions. The Confederates
abandoned the depot as well as the inner line of works.
In the darkness, the Federals rounded up hundreds of prisoners, but
hundreds more escaped down the Burnsville Road, including generals
Forrest, Armstrong, and Roddey. To the west, many Confederate soldiers
fought the pursuing Union Army all the way down to the eastern side of
Valley Creek. They escaped in the darkness by swimming across the
Alabama River near the mouth of Valley Creek (where the present day
Battle of Selma
Battle of Selma Reenactment is held.)
The Union troops looted the city that night and burned many businesses
and private residences. They spent the next week destroying the
arsenal and naval foundry. They left Selma heading to Montgomery. At
the war's end, they were en route to Columbus and Macon, Georgia.
Selma became the seat of Dallas County in 1866 and the county
courthouse was built here. Planters and other slaveholders
struggled to figure out how to deal with free labor after the war.
Insurgents tried to keep white supremacy over the freedmen, and most
whites resented former slaves being granted the right to vote. As in
other southern states, white Democrats regained political power in the
mid-1870s after suppressing black voting through violence and fraud;
Reconstruction officially ended in 1877 when federal troops were
withdrawn. The white Democratic state legislature imposed Jim Crow
laws of racial segregation in public facilities and other means of
white supremacy. The city developed its own police force and county
law enforcement was run by an elected County Sheriff, whose
jurisdiction included the grounds of the county courthouse.
In 1901 the state legislature passed a new constitution, with
electoral provisions such as poll taxes and literacy tests, that
effectively disenfranchised most blacks and tens of thousands of poor
whites. This left them without representation in government, as well
as depriving them of participation in juries and other forms of
citizenship. Selma, Dallas County, and other jurisdictions carried out
the segregation laws passed by the state.
African Americans and poor whites both participated in fighting in the
two World Wars, and returned to the US to enjoy the freedoms they had
fought for. Especially in the post-
World War II
World War II period, through legal
challenges by the NAACP against southern discriminatory laws, and
activities of private citizens, blacks became increasingly active in
trying to exercise their constitutional rights as citizens.
Selma Voting Rights Movement
See also: Selma to Montgomery marches
Selma to Montgomery marches, 1965
Selma maintained segregated schools and other facilities, enforcing
the state law in new enterprises such as movie theaters. The Jim Crow
laws and customs were enforced with violence if necessary.
In the 1960s, blacks who pushed the boundaries, attempting to eat at
"white-only" lunch counters or sit in the downstairs "white" section
of the movie theater, were still beaten and arrested. Nearly half of
Selma's residents were black, but because of the restrictive electoral
laws and practices since the turn of the century, only one percent
were registered to vote. This prevented them from serving on juries or
serving in local office. All the members of the city council were
elected by at-large voting. Blacks were prevented from registering to
vote by the literacy test, administered in a subjective way; economic
retaliation organized by the White Citizens' Council in response to
civil rights activism,
Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan violence, and police repression.
After the Supreme Court case
Smith v. Allwright
Smith v. Allwright (1944) ended the use
of white primaries by the Democratic Party, the
legislature passed a law giving voting registrars more authority to
challenge erstwhile voters under the literacy test. Also, in Selma,
the county registration board opened doors for registration only two
days a month, arrived late, and took long lunches.
In early 1963,
Bernard Lafayette and Colia Lafayette of the Student
Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) began organizing in Selma
alongside local civil rights leaders Sam, Amelia, and Bruce Boynton;
Rev. L.L. Anderson of Tabernacle Baptist Church, J.L. Chestnut
(Selma's first Black attorney), SCLC Citizenship School teacher Marie
Foster, public school teacher Marie Moore, and
Frederick D. Reese
Frederick D. Reese and
others active with the
Dallas County Voters League (DCVL).
In 1963 the public library of Selma-Dallas County was integrated under
the leadership of Patricia Swift Blalock.
Brown Chapel A.M.E. Church in Selma. A gathering place for meetings
and a starting point for the Selma to Montgomery Civil Rights marches
of 1965, it has been designated as a National Historic Landmark.
Against fierce opposition from Dallas County Sheriff Jim Clark and his
volunteer posse, blacks continued their voter registration and
desegregation efforts, which expanded during 1963 and the first part
of 1964. Defying intimidation, economic retaliation, arrests, firings,
and beatings, an ever-increasing number of Dallas County blacks tried
to register to vote, but few were able to do so under the subjective
system administered by whites.
In the summer of 1964, a sweeping injunction issued by local Judge
James Hare barred any gathering of three or more people under
sponsorship of SNCC, SCLC, or DCVL, or with the involvement of 41
named civil rights leaders. This injunction temporarily halted civil
rights activity until Dr.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. defied it by
speaking to a crowd about the struggle at Brown Chapel AME Church on
January 2, 1965. He had been invited by local leaders to help their
Beginning in January 1965, SCLC and SNCC initiated a revived Voting
Rights Campaign designed to focus national attention on the systematic
denial of black voting rights in Alabama, and particularly Selma.
Blacks had followed a campaign to register, thwarted by subjective
tests administered by white registrars. Over the next weeks, more than
3,000 African Americans were arrested, and they suffered police
violence and economic retaliation. Jimmie Lee Jackson, who was
unarmed, was killed in a cafe in nearby Marion after state police
broke up a peaceful protest in the town.
Activists planned a larger, more public march, from Selma to the state
capital of Montgomery, to publicize their cause. It was initiated and
organized by James Bevel, SCLC's Director of Direct Action who was
directing SCLC's Selma Movement. This march represented one of the
political and emotional peaks of the modern Civil Rights Movement. On
March 7, 1965, approximately 600 civil rights marchers departed Selma
on U.S. Highway 80, heading east to the capital. After they passed
over the crest of the
Edmund Pettus Bridge
Edmund Pettus Bridge and left the boundaries of
the city, they were confronted by county sheriff's deputies and state
troopers who attacked them using tear gas, horses, and billy clubs,
and drove them back across the bridge. Governor
George Wallace had
vowed that the march would not be permitted. Seventeen marchers were
hospitalized and 50 more were treated for lesser injuries. Because of
the brutal attacks, this became known as "Bloody Sunday." It was
covered by national press and television news, reaching many American
and international homes.
Two days after the first march, on March 9, 1965, Martin Luther King,
Jr. led a symbolic march over the bridge. By then local activists and
residents had been joined by hundreds of protesters from across the
country, including numerous clergy and nuns. Whites made up one-third
of the marchers. That day King pulled the marchers back from entering
the county and having another confrontation with county and state
forces. But that night, white minister James Reeb, who had traveled to
the city from Boston, was attacked and killed in Selma by white
members of the KKK.
King and other civil rights leaders filed to get court protection for
a third, larger-scale march from Selma to Montgomery, the state
capital. King was also in touch with the administration of President
Lyndon B. Johnson, who arranged for protection for another march.
Frank Minis Johnson, Jr., the Federal District Court Judge for the
area who reviewed the injunction, decided in favor of the
The law is clear that the right to petition one's government for the
redress of grievances may be exercised in large groups...and these
rights may be exercised by marching, even along public highways.
— Frank Johnson
On March 21, 1965, a Sunday, approximately 3,200 marchers departed for
Montgomery. Marching in the front row with King were Rev. Ralph
Abernathy, Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, Greek Orthodox Father Iakovos
(later Archbishop Iakovos of America), and Roman Catholic nuns. They
walked approximately 12 miles a day, and slept in nearby fields. The
federal government provided protection by National Guard and military
troops. Thousands of people joined the march along the way. By the
time the marchers reached the capitol four days later, on March 25,
their strength had swelled to around 25,000 people. Their moral
campaign had attracted thousands of people from across the
The events at Selma helped increase public support for the cause;
later that year the US Congress passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965,
an effort whose bill was introduced, supported and signed by President
Lyndon B. Johnson. It provided for federal oversight and enforcement
of voting rights for all citizens in state or jurisdictions where
patterns of under-representation showed discrimination against certain
populations, historically ethnic minorities.
By March 1966, a year after the Selma to Montgomery marches, nearly
11,000 blacks had registered to vote in Selma, where 12,000 whites
were registered. Registration increased by November, when Wilson Baker
was elected as Dallas County Sheriff to replace the notorious Jim
Seven years later, however, blacks had not been able to elect a
candidate of their choice to the city council. Its members were
elected at-large by the entire city, and the white majority had
managed to control the elections. Threatened with a lawsuit under the
Voting Rights Act because of this system, the Selma city council voted
to adopt a system of electing its ten members from single-member
districts. After the change, five African-American Democrats were
elected to the city council, including activist Frederick Douglas
Reese, who became a major power in the city; five whites were also
elected to the council.
The city and rural region have struggled economically, as agriculture
does not provide enough jobs. There was a downturn after restructuring
in industry that had done well into the 1960s.
Selma is located at 32°24′26″N 87°1′16″W / 32.40722°N
87.02111°W / 32.40722; -87.02111, west of Montgomery.
According to the U.S.
Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.4
square miles (37 km2) of which 13.9 square miles (36 km2) is
land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km2) is water.
U.S. Decennial Census
As of the 2010 census, there were 20,756 people residing in the city.
The racial makeup of the city was 80.3% Black or African American,
18.0% White, 0.20% Native American, 0.60% Asian, 0.1% other races,
0.80% from two or more races and Hispanics or Latinos, of any race,
comprised 0.60% of the population.
As of the census of 2000, there were 20,512 people, 8,196 households,
and 5,343 families residing in the city. The population density was
1,479.6 square miles (3,832 km2). There were 9,264 housing units
at an average density of 668.3 per square mile (258.0/km2). The racial
makeup of the city was 70.68% Black or African American, 28.77% White,
0.10% Native American, 0.56% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.22% from
other races, and 0.66% from two or more races.
There were 8,196 households, out of which 30.3% had children under the
age of 18 living with them; 34.2% were married couples living
together, 27.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and
34.8% were non-families. 32.6% of all households were made up of
individuals and 14.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age
or older. The average household size was 2.44 and the average family
size was 3.10.
In the city, the population was spread out with 27.3% under the age of
18, 9.7% from 18 to 24, 24.9% from 25 to 44, 21.8% from 45 to 64, and
16.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years.
For every 100 females there were 78.2 males. For every 100 females age
18 and over, there were 72.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $21,261, and the
median income for a family was $28,345. Males had a median income of
$29,769 versus $18,129 for females. The per capita income for the city
was $13,369. About 26.9% of families and 31.7% of the population were
below the poverty line, including 41.8% of those under age 18 and
28.0% of those age 65 or over.
Industries in Selma include International Paper, Bush Hog
(agricultural equipment), Plantation Patterns, American Apparel, and
Peerless Pump Company (LaBour), Renasol, and Hyundai.
Civil rights tourism has become a new source of business.:146
Arts and culture
Sturdivant Hall, completed in 1856 and now a historic house museum.
Edmund Pettus Bridge
Edmund Pettus Bridge over the
Alabama River in Selma, site of some
of the events of "Bloody Sunday" during the Civil Rights Movement.
Cultural events are held at Mira's Avon Fan Club House, the Performing
Arts Center, and the Selma Art Guild Gallery.
Museums and points of interest
Museums in the city include Sturdivant Hall, the National Voting
Rights Museum, Historic Water Avenue,
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Street
Historic Walking Tour, Old Depot Museum, Joe Calton Bates Children
Education and History Museum, Vaughan-Smitherman Museum and Heritage
Selma boasts the state's largest contiguous historic district, with
more than 1,250 structures identified as contributing. Area
attractions include the Old
Town Historic District, Old Live Oak
Cemetery, Paul M. Grist State Park, and Old Cahawba Archaeological
The complex history is reflected in naming and monuments as well.
Highway 80, which runs east and west through Selma and the state has
reflected this in naming patterns. In 1920 the east-west Highway 80
was designated as part of the Jefferson Davis Memorial Highway. In
1977 US 80 was named Givhan Parkway in honor of the long-serving state
senator Walter C. Givhan, a segregationist to the end. In 1996 it was
designated as part of the 'National Civil Rights Trail' by President
Bill Clinton and is administered by the National Park Service. In 2000
sections of Highway 80 leading into Selma were renamed in honor of
leaders in the Selma Voting Rights Movement: F.D. Reese, Marie Foster,
and Amelia Boynton.
As part of its Civil War history, a monument to native Nathan Bedford
Forrest, a Confederate General, was installed in Old Live Oak
Cemetery. It was torn down in 2012, reflecting the continuing
controversy about him. In August 2012, plans were announced to build a
larger monument, more resistant to vandalism, but many African
Americans object to it because of his supposed history as a postwar
leader with the KKK,an accusation which the General vehemntly denied
and for which there is no definitive proof and his earlier involvement
in the alleged massacre of black Union troops that surrendered and
then took up arms and continued to fight Fort Pillow.
Selma and Dallas County Public Library
The Selma-Dallas County Public Library serves the city and the region
with a collection of 76,751 volumes. It was established as a Carnegie
library in 1904, receiving matching funds for construction. The 25,000
square feet (2,300 m2) library is in downtown Selma.
The city government of Selma consists of a mayor and a nine-member
city council, elected from single-member districts. The current mayor
is Darrio Melton. The city council members are: Corey D. Bowie, City
Council President; Carl Bowline, Ward 1; Susan M. Keith, Ward 2; Miah
Tolbert-Jackson, Ward 3; Angela Benjamin, Ward 4; Samuel L. Randolph,
Ward 5; Johnnie Leashore, Ward 6; Jannie Thomas, Ward 7; Michael
Johnson, Ward 8.
Craig Field (SEM), located four nautical miles (4.6 mi,
7.4 km) southeast of the central business district of Selma
Colleges in Selma include Concordia
College Alabama, Selma University,
and George Corley Wallace State Community
College (Wallace Community
College Selma) located at the edge of the city limits near Valley
City Schools operates the city's public schools. The public high
school is Selma High School. Middle schools include R.B. Hudson Middle
School and the School of Discovery. The city has eight elementary
Selma has four private K–12 schools: John T. Morgan Academy, founded
in 1965, Meadowview Christian School, Ellwood Christian Academy, and
Cathedral Christian Academy.
See also: List of television stations in
Alabama and List of radio
stations in Alabama
Selma is served by the Montgomery-Selma television Designated Market
Charter Communications provides cable television service.
Dish Network provide direct broadcast satellite television
including both local and national channels to area residents.
WALX 100.9 FM (Classic Hits)
WAPR 88.3 FM (Educational)
WAQU 91.1 FM (Christian)
WDXX 100.1 FM (country)
WHBB 1490 AM (news/Talk/Gospel)
WJAM 1340 AM/96.3 FM (Urban adult contemporary)
WRNF 89.5 FM (Religious)
WBFZ 105.3 FM ([Gospel Blues R&B Talk])
WAKA (Channel 8) CBS
WBIH (Channel 29) Independent
Selma Times-Journal (daily)
Main article: List of people from Selma, Alabama
Zinn Beck - former
MLB infielder; managed the first Selma Cloverleafs
from 1928 - 1930, winning the
Southeastern League pennant in 1930
Patricia Swift Blalock, librarian and civil rights activist
Jo Bonner - former U.S Representative
Edgar Cayce - famed psychic who worked and lived in Selma
J.L. Chestnut - author, attorney, and a figure in the Civil Rights
Jim Clark - Selma sheriff during the 1965 Voting Rights campaign
Annie Lee Cooper - long-time civil rights activist who was active in
the 1965 movement
Charles Davis, member of the Azerbaijan national basketball team
Howard W. Gilmore,
World War II
World War II submarine commander who posthumously
received the Medal of Honor
Jimmy Gresham, soul musician
Mia Hamm - former Professional soccer player
Candy Harris, former
Major League Baseball
Major League Baseball player for the Houston
Sam Hobbs, U.S. Representative from 1935 to 1951
Eunice W. Johnson, founder and director of the EbonyFashion Fair
Michael Johnson - Professional Football Player, NFL, Cincinnati
James Ralph "Shug" Jordan - former head football coach of Auburn
William Rufus King
William Rufus King - Vice President of the United States, U.S.
Senator, Minister to France
Terry Leach - former professional baseball player MLB, baseball field
Bloch Park named for him.
Larry Marks, professional boxer
William Clarence Matthews, former baseball player, first head football
coach for Tuskegee University, lawyer, and civil rights activist
Pat McHugh, former professional football player for the Philadelphia
John Melvin - first American naval officer to die in World War I
Olan Mills Sr., photographer and founder of Olan Mills
Johnny Moore, lead singer for The Drifters
Ben Obomanu - Professional Football Player, NFL, New York Jets
Shwetak Patel - computer scientist and entrepreneur
Eric Whitmire - computer scientist
James Perkins, Jr., first
African American mayor of Selma
Edmund Pettus - U.S. Senator, Brigadier General CSA
Minnie Bruce Pratt, educator, activist, and essayist
Cal Ramsey, former NBA player
Frederick D. Reese, Voting Rights Movement leader
Amelia Boynton Robinson - Voting Rights Movement leader and long time
civic activist in Selma
Richard Scrushy - founder of HealthSouth
Jeff Sessions -
United States Attorney General and former United
Terri Sewell - 2010 Democratic representative for Alabama's 7th
Carolyn Calhoun-Bates - first
African American woman and President
elected to Dallas County Board of Education (2012)
Benjamin S. Turner
Benjamin S. Turner - first
African American elected to U.S. Congress
Alabama (1871- Republican)
Hattie Hooker Wilkins, first woman elected to the
Kathryn Tucker Windham
Kathryn Tucker Windham - famed storyteller, author, photographer, and
Bloch Park was home to
Southeastern League of Professional
Baseball club the Selma Cloverleafs.
In popular culture
Selma, a 2014 award-winning film, features a filmed-on-location
reenactment of the events surrounding the 1965 Selma to Montgomery
marches on "Bloody Sunday".
Selma was featured in the 1999 Disney television movie Selma, Lord,
Selma for its historical significance in the
Civil Rights Movement
Civil Rights Movement on
1968's The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter was filmed in Selma.
Blue Sky was filmed at Craig Field, the former Air Force base located
at the edge of the city. The 1994 film employed many of the people of
Selma as extras, including local high school marching bands.
Return of the Body Snatchers was partially filmed at Craig Field.
Selma is mentioned in the 1965 song "Eve of Destruction" by P. F.
Referenced in Charles Mingus's 1965 composition "It Was a Lonely Day
in Selma, Alabama."
^ "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files".
Census Bureau. Retrieved
Jul 17, 2017.
^ "Population Estimates".
Census Bureau. Retrieved
^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9,
^ "Fact Sheet- Selma city, Alabama". State and County QuickFacts. U.S.
Census Bureau. Retrieved 17 December 2011.
^ "History of Selma, Alabama".
City of Selma, Alabama. Archived from
the original on 2011-08-15. Retrieved 2011-06-17.
^ Daniel Fate Brooks (2003). "The Faces of William R. King" (PDF).
Alabama Heritage. University of Alabama, University of
Alabama Department of Archives and History. 69 (Summer):
^ a b Lewis, Herbert J. (21 January 2010). "Selma". Encyclopedia of
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^ Hardy, John (1879). Selam: Her Institutions and Her Men. Bert
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^ U.S. Civil Rights Commission report, 1961
^ Eyes on the Prize documentary film ~ Blackside
^ Selma — Cracking the Wall of Fear ~
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^ Graham, P.T., (2002) A Right to Read: Segregation and Civil Rights
in Alabama's Public Libraries, 1900-1965. Tuscaloosa: University of
^ Freedom Day in Selma ~
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^ "The Selma Injunction". Veterans of the Civil Rights Movement.
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^ "The Cost", We Shall Overcome: Historic Places of the Civil Rights
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^ "Selma & the March to Montgomery-A Discussion November–June,
2004-2005". Veterans of the Civil Rights Movement. Retrieved July 5,
^ Ari Berman, "Fifty Years After Bloody Sunday in Selma, Everything
and Nothing Has Changed", The Nation, 25 February 2015, accessed 12
^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".
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^ "Geographic Comparison Table- Alabama". American Fast Facts. United
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^ a b David J. Krajicek, "On the Road to Selma, a
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Crime Report, 2 February 2015, accessed 14 March 2015
^ "Shameful! Selma To Build Monument Honoring KKK Founder".
Newsone.ocm. 22 August 2012. Retrieved 27 August 2017.
^ News, U. S. "Monument to Civil War general,
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Ku Klux Klan leader
triggers controversy". U.S. News. Retrieved 27 August 2017.
^ The Confederacy's Greatest Calvaryman by Brian Steel Wills
^ "Selma-Dallas County Public Library Main Page". selmalibrary.org.
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^ "Selma, Lord, Selma". IMDb.com.
Teague, Matthew (March 6, 2015). "Selma, 50 years after march, remains
a city divided". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 2, 2018.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Selma, Alabama.
Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article
The official website of Selma, Alabama
Selma-Dallas County Chamber of Commerce
Selma-Dallas County Public Library
National Voting Rights Museum and Institute
Craig Field Airport
William Rufus DeVane King at Find a Grave
Institute of Southern Jewish Life, History of Selma
Municipalities and communities of Dallas County, Alabama, United
County seat: Selma