Interview with Arthur Shores
QUESTION 14
INTERVIEWER:

IN 1963, THE NEW GOVERNMENT WAS, WAS ELECTED. ALBERT BOUTWELL WAS ELECTED MAYOR, AFTER THE RUNOFF WITH BULL CONNOR. SUDDENLY THERE WERE TWO FORMS OF GOVERNMENT IN THE CITY, AND THEN DR. KING AND THE SCLC STARTED THEIR CAMPAIGN. THERE WAS ALREADY CHANGE COMING IN BIRMINGHAM. DID YOU THINK DR. KING'S INTERVENTION WAS NECESSARY AT THAT POINT?

Arthur Shores:

Well, as results of the — results, we felt that it was. Because it seemed, nationally, on television, the uh fire hoses, and the dogs it pricked the conscience of the country. Congress immediately began passing the legislation. Uh, the uh, Equal Rights Act, and subsequently the Voter Rights Act, where it sent federal registrars into the state. And that had a tremendous impact on change. So I would attribute it to — largely, right along through there. See, we had been using the courts, which is a very slow process, and we had to go from county to county and file suits. But uh, when uh, the Civil Rights Act – as a result of what they had — Congress and the people of this country had seen, happening, uh, it changed the whole situation here, in this state.