Ford Announces Donation of Celebrated Freedom's Sisters Exhibition to National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis

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Ford Motor Company announces it is donating the national Freedom's Sisters exhibition to the National Civil Rights Museum. Memphis community to celebrate exhibit return and local women honorees during a special reception.

Ford Motor Company announced today the donation of the national Freedom’s Sisters exhibition to the National Civil Rights Museum (NCRM) in Memphis. A special community launch reception will mark the occasion on Wednesday, February 27, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Over 60 local women recognized as a local committee of honor for their efforts will highlight the evening's program.

“The Freedom’s Sisters exhibit celebrating the women of the civil rights movement has been a signature program for Ford Motor Company,” said Pamela Alexander, Director of Community Development, Ford Motor Company Fund. “We are proud to entrust the National Civil Rights Museum with its legacy and its future.”

Freedom’s Sisters is an extraordinary multi-media and interactive presentation celebrating the lives and contributions of 20 exceptional African American women of the late 19th and 20th centuries and their contributions to the cause of civil and human rights in the United States of America. Their stories of courage, commitment and struggle in the name of freedom helped shape the spirit and substance of civil rights in America. The exhibit completed its four-year national tour last year.

“We are thrilled to have this powerful exhibit return to the National Civil Rights Museum as its final destination after a four-year cross country tour, " comments Beverly Robertson, President of the National Civil Rights Museum. "We appreciate the confidence the Ford Motor Company Fund has placed in us by entrusting this collection to our stewardship. Because of the vision of Ford's leadership, thousands of people across the country have had an opportunity to learn from and be inspired by the tremendous accomplishments of 20 courageous women featured in the exhibition. Equally important are the scores of local Freedom Sisters and change-makers who have been recognized in each tour market. These local sisters personify the spirit and tenacity of those featured in the exhibit."

Among those highlighted in the exhibit are Ella J. Baker, Constance Baker Motley, Shirley Chisholm, Mary Church Terrell, Septima Poinsette Clark, Kathleen Cleaver, Myrlie Evers-Williams, Fannie Lou Hamer, Dorothy Height, Charlayne Hunter-Gault, Barbara Jordan, Mary McLeod Bethune, Rosa Parks, Sonia Sanchez, Coretta Scott King, Betty Shabazz, Harriet Tubman, C. Delores Tucker, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper and Ida B. Wells.

Freedom's Sisters was created by the Cincinnati Museum Center and organized for travel by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service. Funding for the exhibit and its national tour was made possible by a grant from Ford Motor Company Fund. Presently, the exhibit is on display at the National Civil Rights Museum in the Freedom’s Sisters exhibit, located at 115 Huling Avenue at Mulberry Street. It will remain there until the end of 2013. This will allow visitors to view the exhibit while renovations are underway at the historic site of the Loraine Motel. For more information on the Freedom's Sisters exhibition go to civilrightmuseum.org.

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About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 172,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit http://corporate.ford.com.

About National Civil Rights Museum

The National Civil Rights Museum is located at the historic Lorraine Motel, site of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968. The Museum opened in 1991 and chronicles the civil rights movement from 1619 to 2000 with historical exhibits, including Room 306, the hotel room where Dr. King stayed in April of 1968. The Museum operates as a nonprofit with an average of 200,000 visitors a year and serves as an educational site of conscience for all visitors. Visit our website at http://www.civilrightsmuseum.org or call (901) 521-9699.

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