Black History Tours in Atlanta

Black History Tours in Atlanta
Never mind history books or a fuzzy video of Martin Luther King Jr. reciting his famous speech. You can get a real taste of black history with several tours offered in Atlanta. You can book a full day or several days with a tour agency through their heritage center. Or check out some key spots on your own.

MLK National Historic Site in the Sweet Auburn District

A must on any black history tour of Atlanta is the birthplace of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He was born in the Sweet Auburn district, which is home to Sweet Auburn Avenue, where the city's black leaders, businessmen and artists would regularly meet from the 1890s to the 1940s. In addition to seeing the King birth home, burial site and the Ebenezer Baptist Church where generations of Kings have preached, the International Civil Rights Walk of Fame features footprints of 17 civil rights leaders on display.

MLK National Historic Site
450 Auburn Ave., N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30312-1525
(404) 331-5190
NPS.gov/malu/index.htm

Atlanta University Center

Spelman College, Morehouse and its school of medicine, Morris Brown College and Clark Atlanta University are just some of the schools in the vast collection that make up the Atlanta University Center. Founded in the late 19th century, the center features the most expansive array of African-American colleges in the nation. Campus highlights include botanical gardens, an aquarium and a museum of arts.

Atlanta University Center
156 Mildred St.
Atlanta, GA 30314
(404) 523-5148
aucenter.edu/main.php

APEX Museum

The APEX Museum houses an incredible and informative collection of artifacts and photos and even puts on presentations outlining the history of Atlanta and its African-American culture. Highlights include a rendition of the Yates and Milton Drug Store, one of the first black-owned businesses in the city; the Trolley Theater, where videos are shown; and the black history Hall of Achievement.

APEX Museum
135 Auburn Ave. N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30303-2567
(404) 523-2739
APEXmuseum.org

Restaurants

Fill up on fried chicken with waffles for breakfast and country ham steak for dinner with a stop at two of Atlanta's historic African-American restaurants. Gladys Knight and Ron Winans' Chicken and Waffles is the breakfast stop, brought to Atlanta by Knight after she had the combination back in Harlem. Dinner's stop is Paschal's Motor Hotel and Restaurant, where civil rights leaders would plan their next move. Although the restaurant has been moved from its original location, it still offers some of the original fare.

Gladys Knight & Ron Winans' Chicken & Waffles
529 Peachtree St. N.W.
Atlanta, GA 30308
(404) 874-9393
GladysandRon.net

Paschal's Atlanta Restaurant
180-B Northside Drive
Atlanta, GA 30313
(404) 525-2023
PaschalsAtlanta.com

Article Written By Ryn Gargulinski

Ryn Gargulinski is a writer, artist and performer whose journalism career began in 1991. Credits include two illustrated books, "Bony Yoga" and "Rats Incredible"; fitness, animal, crime, general news and features for various publications; and several awards. She holds a Master of Arts in English literature and folklore and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in creative writing with a French minor from Brooklyn College.

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