Honoring the Chapel Hill Nine with Site Dedication and Community Celebration

On Sunday, Feb. 28, 1960, nine young men from Chapel Hill's all-black Lincoln High School sat at a booth in the Colonial Drug Store and sought the same service that was given to white customers.

Their courageous step sparked a decade of direct-action civil rights demonstrations in Chapel Hill. At 5 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 28, the Town of Chapel Hill will begin to honor that action by dedicating a site for a permanent historical marker at 405 W. Franklin St., followed by a community celebration at First Baptist Church.

The Town will unveil a rendering of the commemorative marker outside of the West End Wine Bar, which occupies the space where Colonial Drug used to be. The marker itself will be installed in 2020, the 60th anniversary of Chapel Hill’s first Civil Rights Era sit-in.

After the unveiling and dedication, the Lincoln High School Alumni Association will lead a community march to First Baptist Church at 106 N. Robeson St. for an evening program that organizers are describing as a celebration of the Chapel Hill Nine and the Civil Rights youth movement at Lincoln High School. The purpose of this program is to recognize and inspire the power to change, and to inspire Chapel Hill's local youth.

These programs are being organized by Lincoln High School Alumni Association, Town of Chapel Hill, Historic Civil Rights Commemorative Task Force, Chapel Hill Public Library, and First Baptist Church.

Visit chapelhillhistory.org to learn about the Chapel Hill Nine story.

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