The Congressional Gold Medals are awarded by Congress as “its highest expression of national appreciation for distinguished achievements and contributions”* and honors individuals, institutions, or events. For Birmingham, Al, this is special because Congress awarded Gold Medals to the four girls killed in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in 1963.

Read Public Law 113-11: An Act to award posthumously a Congressional Gold Medal to Addie Mae Collins, Denise McNair, Carole Robertson, and Cynthia Wesley to commemorate the lives they lost 50 years ago in the bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, where these 4 little Black girls’ ultimate sacrifice served as a catalyst for the Civil Rights Movement.

*Quote from Congressional Gold Medal Recipients.