"Selma to Montgomery"

Description: This mosaic depicts a historic march for voting rights. This demonstration started at the Edmund Pettus bridge in Selma, Alabama on March 21, 1965 and concluded at the state capitol in Montgomery, AL. Led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., thousands of nonviolent demonstrators gathered for this 5-day march, which culminated at the steps of the Alabama state capitol. Here, MLK delivered a sermon (click here for transcript of the sermon and here to hear a portion of the sermon) entitled “Our God is Marching On” in which he proclaimed:

“…the end we seek is a society at peace with itself, a society that can live with its conscience. And that will be a day not of the white man, not of the black man. That will be the day of man as man.”

This march marked a turning point in the voting rights movement. In August of that year, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson. This important legislation outlawed discriminatory voting practices adopted in many southern states after the Civil War, opening a door for many Black and Brown voters to register to vote.

With arms interlocked and leading the march are: Ralph Abernathy, James Forman, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rev. Jesse Douglas, and John Lewis.

Inspiration: Click here to see a powerful photograph by Steve Schapiro (a photographer for Life magazine) that inspired this mosaic.

Size: “Selma to Montgomery” was created using over 16,000 hand-painted LEGO bricks. Including its frame, it measures ~92″ x 42″.

Hours to build: 100+ (completed in 2022)

Images of the mosaic in the lobby of the Ann Arbor District Library (Downtown Ann Arbor branch) are by Sydney Verlinde (MLive). The artwork now resides in the main stairwell of the Library.

Click here to read the story published on MLive (1/16/23)