These cars were parked beside the 16th Street Baptist Church when the explosion ripped through the church in Birmingham, Ala., on Sept. 15, 1963.
By invoking the Antiquities Act of 1906 to designate the sites, Obama has now used the act more than any other president. He has created or expanded 34 national monuments, two more than Franklin D. Roosevelt.
The new Birmingham Civil Rights National Historical Monument features the site of the Sept. 15, 1963, bombing of the city’s 16th Street Baptist Church, which killed four girls and injured 22 other people, as well as the A.G. Gaston Motel, where segregation opponents organized in the 1960s. The death of the four girls, who were attending Sunday school, outraged many Americans and provided a critical impetus for the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.