BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The A.G. Gaston Motel played a substantial role in the civil rights era in Birmingham. The motel, which opened 65 years ago on July 1, was one of the nicest motels that allowed African-Americans guests.
The motel was so nice that Aretha Franklin, Duke Ellington and Harry Belafonte stayed at the A.G. Gaston. It is also where Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth met in Room 30 to plan their strategy in hopes to achieve civil rights.
The celebration included a full day of events, including Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin and Senator Doug Jones speaking. There was a sneak peek of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute’s “A.G. Gaston: The Man and His Legacy” exhibit and a host of other honorary events showing respect to the historic motel. The day ends with “Community Conversations: Birmingham’s Black Business District."