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November 7, 2014–April 5,2015

civil rights movement

Martin Luther King

Photos From the State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory Project

The Museum of Florida History presents the special exhibit Civil Rights in the Sunshine State from November 7, 2014 to April 5, 2015 in downtown Tallahassee. Through artifacts, videos, interactive elements, and narratives, visitors can explore the significant contributions Florida made to the state and national civil rights movement.

The Museum of Florida History produced Civil Rights in the Sunshine State in collaboration with multiple universities, organizations, and individuals. Many of the photographs on display are from the State Archives of Florida, and there are artifacts from across the state, loaned from organizations such as the Ritz Theatre and Museum in Jacksonville, HistoryMiami, Harry T. & Harriette V. Moore Cultural Center, ACCORD Civil Rights Museum, Stetson Kennedy Foundation, and Meeks-Eaton Black Archives and Museum at Florida A&M University.

Among the items on display are a Bible of the Reverend Theodore Gibson, who was a leader of the civil rights movements in Miami, and a stool from Woolworths Department Store in Jacksonville, which was the site of a famous "sit-in" demonstration in 1960 that made national headlines. Complementing the artifacts are videos of numerous civil rights leaders including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Patricia Stephens Due, Theodore Gibson, and Reverend C. K. Steele.

Civil rights activists from Tallahassee, Jacksonville, and other cities served as advisors on the exhibit, along with historians from Florida State University, the University of Florida, Florida A&M University, and the Florida African American Heritage Preservation Network (FAAHPN).

The exhibit is one aspect of a number of initiatives undertaken by the Florida Department of State to commemorate the historic signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Other events include a collection of photographs compiled by the State Archives on, and a calendar of statewide events can be found at For more information about the Museum of Florida History or the exhibit, please visit

Civil Rights in the Sunshine State Speakers Series

The Museum is holding a speakers series featuring prominent civil rights leaders and historians throughout the exhibit.

November 20, 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.

pic Rodney Hurst talks about his experiences with the NAACP Youth Movement in Jacksonville, Florida. Hurst led multiple sit-in demonstrations as a teenager in the 1960s and has continued to be a prominent civil rights figure.

Funding for this program was provided through a grant from the Florida Humanities Council with funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this program do not necessarily represent those of the Florida Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities