Restoration and remembrance

Babtistad2The ad community is helping take part in a restoration project in Birmingham, Ala., the scene of some of the most violent incidents of the civil-rights movement. Lewis Communications, an independent Birmingham shop with about $60 million in annual billings, has donated three print ads (a detail from one is shown here) to help raise money for the $3.8 million restoration of the landmark Sixteenth Avenue Baptist Church. The 130-year-old church was bombed by Ku Klux Klan members on a Sunday morning in 1963, killing four young black girls in a Bible study class. It took 38 years to find and convict the two men responsible, both now serving life in prison. The restoration effort is led by Carolyn McKinstry, who was in the Bible class that day, as president of the foundation formed for the project. The restoration of the church, which had fallen into extreme disrepair, has united blacks and whites in the city, McKinstry said. “We have heard from almost everyone,” McKinstry said in a written statement. “A lot of positive relations will remain as we have moved from a city divided in 1963 to a city united.”

—Posted by Jim Lovel