12 On Tour: Lowndes Interpretive Center

It's dedicated to the memory of people in Lowndes County who gave up so much for their right to vote, and for those who don't remember that time or are just learning about the Civil Rights Movement this place is like a trip back in time.

Youngsters from a local Headstart will find out all about the people who paved the way for them as they walk through the Lowndes County Interpretive Center that opened a short time ago.

The center is located right in the middle of the path that marchers to took from Selma to Montgomery.

The focus here is on Tent City and the tenant farmers and sharecroppers who gave up everything they had to gain the one thing they hadn't had before; the right to vote.

Site Manager Jim Heaney says, "It makes it very immediate to them the fact that this was someone's home. They have tremendous respect and admiration for these individuals who indured such incredible prejudice and incredible racism."

There's a message in every part of the center, inside and out.

Even the architecture of the building helps tell the story.

Heaney points out that the image of the historic Edmond Pettus bridge overhead, and a likeness of Browns Chapel, the church where the march began, on the building's exterior.

People come from all over to see this homage to this area's history, some without even planning to stop.

"We do get a lot of people just driving by," Heaney says.

There are several exhibits throughout including some that allow you to hear from some of the people who were around when Tent City was in existence.

Some were for the movement, some were against it, and some who were even caught in the middle.

Also offered as part of your visit, a movie with images so powerful that it has already won two awards.

The hope is that folks will march proudly into the future knowing so many sacrificed so much to pave their way.

In Hayneville, with Broadview Media, I'm Tonya Terry touring Alabama.