Black History Month Spotlight – Mt Zion Baptist Church

Mount Zion Baptist Church, Little Rock, AR.JPGThe new Arkansas Civil Rights History Audio Tour was launched in November 2015. Produced by the City of Little Rock and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock allows the many places and stories of the City’s Civil Rights history to come to life an interactive tour.  This month, during Black History Month, the Culture Vulture looks at some of the stops on this tour which focus on African American history.

Mt. Zion Baptist Church was organized in 1877 and is one of the earliest black congregations in Little Rock. The church was rebuilt in its current location in 1927 under the leadership of Rev. Fred T. Guy. From the late 1800s to the present, local church leaders, their congregants, grassroots groups, civic organizations, fraternal societies, and black business owners fought for equal rights.

A warrior in the community and tireless human rights advocate, Rev. Fred T. Guy, Mr. Zion’s pastor, challenged Superintendent of Schools Virgil Blossom and the Little Rock School Board to desegregate schools in 1957. “Next to the law of God, the Constitution of the United States means the most to me. When you start to tinker with the Constitution, it becomes awfully important to us,” said Rev. Guy.

The app, funded by a generous grant from the Arkansas Humanities Council, was a collaboration among UALR’s Institute on Race and Ethnicity, the City of Little Rock, the Mayor’s Tourism Commission, and KUAR, UALR’s public radio station, with assistance from the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau