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5 Fun Facts About July 31 In Alabama History

---Learn Every Day: AL Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history al To: 618-270-4005---

1. In 1869, the Constitution of Alabama was adopted during a constitutional convention held in Montgomery. The new constitution significantly increased the power of the governor and also enshrined white supremacy into law.

2. On July 31, 1881, Tuskegee Institute was founded by Booker T. Washington. The institution was dedicated to providing African Americans with higher education and vocational training, and it became one of the most important centers of African American education in the country.

3. On this day in 1910, Alabama became the last state to ratify the 15th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which guaranteed the right to vote regardless of race or color. However, African Americans in Alabama still faced numerous obstacles to exercising their right to vote, including poll taxes, literacy tests, and intimidation.

4. In 1945, George Wallace, who would later become a controversial governor of Alabama, married his first wife, Lurleen Burns. Lurleen eventually succeeded her husband as governor after he was barred from running for a second term due to term limits.

5. On July 31, 1965, civil rights activist and voting rights advocate John Lewis led a group of African American demonstrators across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama. Their peaceful protest was met with violence from police officers, and the incident became known as "Bloody Sunday." The violence helped galvanize support for the Civil Rights Act of 1965, which was signed into law later that year.
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