Don’t miss the chance to meet these top tour guides along Alabama’s Civil Rights Trail who lived through the movement and share their firsthand stories in Selma, Montgomery and Birmingham. We filmed with these guides, or as you might call them “experience givers” as they are so much more than guides. They are featured in “Travels with Darley: Alabama’s Civil Rights Trail Part I” and “Part II” on your local PBS TV stations and coming to Create TV, Ovation TV’s Journy and all of the great Apps like Apple TV, Amazon Fire and Roku.

Montgomery Tour Guides: Civil Rights Trail in Alabama

Definitely take a tour with Wanda Battle in Montgomery, Alabama. We also recommend taking Michelle Browder’s trolley tour with her cute dog Nick. Wanda Battle participated in the Civil Rights movement. She and her sister used their beautiful voices to sing in rallies as children. She will illuminate the trail with personal insights and optimism. Her story is remarkable as is her shining personality.

Tour guide Wanda Battle with Darley Newman outside of the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church.
Tour guide Wanda Battle with Darley Newman outside of the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church.

Follow Wanda Battle on a tour of the major sites of the Civil Rights Trail featured on “Travels with Darley: Alabama Civil Rights Trail, Episode 2,” through her Legendary Tours company (Tel. 334-819-6044) such as: 

  • The former Montgomery City Jail
  • First Baptist Church
  • Alabama State Capitol
  • Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church
  • Dexter Parsonage Museum
  • The Harris House
  • The Ben Moore Hotel/The Malden Brothers Barber Shop
  • Rosa Parks Apartment
  • Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church
  • Holt Street Baptist Church
  • Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church

Join Black artist and activist Michelle Browder and her dog, Nick (featured on “Travels with Darley: AL Civil Rights Trail, Episode 2”) on a path through the history of Montgomery and the Civil Rights Movement. Michelle’s aunt was Aurelia Browder, the plaintiff in the 1956 U.S. District Court case Browder v. Gayle, in which bus segregation was ruled unconstitutional. On her trolley tour, participants learn about the history of Alabama, the Native American narrative and the slave narrative. She also mixes in a look at her public art and other sites of importance to women specifically. We suggest contacting Michelle through her Facebook page or calling (334) 296-3024. You can also email Michelle at iammorethan @ icloud.com.

Darley takes a trolley tour with Michelle Browder in Montgomery and her dog Nick.
Darley takes a trolley tour with Michelle Browder in Montgomery and her dog Nick.

Selma, Alabama Tour Guides: Alabama’s Civil Rights Trail

JoAnne Bland in Selma, Alabama has a remarkable story. You can book a tour with her to hear it firsthand and get insights into Selma through Journeys for the Soul with JoAnne Bland, her tour organization. You can reach them by calling 334-412-6604 or emailing journeysforthesoul @ gmail.com. Her assistant is Kimberly.

JoAnne Bland of Journeys for the Soul with Darley Newman with the Edmund Pettus Bridge in the background in Selma.
JoAnne Bland of Journeys for the Soul with Darley Newman with the Edmund Pettus Bridge in the background in Selma.

With JoAnne, you can do a custom tour or take one of her 1.5 or 2.5 hour tours. She also offers a lunch with a history maker experience. Some places she might take you on your tour of Selma include:

Brown Chapel AME Church
● George Washington Carver Homes
● First Baptist Church
● Good Samaritan Hospital
● R. B. Hudson High School
● Selma University
● The Jackson Museum
● Historic District of Selma
● Live Oak Cemetery

For her lunch or dinner with a History Maker, you can meet with a participant in the Movement. McRae Learning Center, a school run by Mrs. Bland’s Sister, Mrs. Sadie Moss, provides the meal. The children at McRae test higher than any other students in the state. It is a private school that doesn’t receive much funding, but because Mrs. Moss doesn’t turn any student away, they are constantly scraping for cash. Having lunch at McRae is just one of the ways that Journeys For The Soul supports the school and the community and that you can as well!

Birmingham Tour Guides: Alabama’s Civil Rights Trail

In Birmingham’s Civil Rights District, take the time to see the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (BCRI). You can hire tour guide Barry McNealy with Milestones Walking Tour to guide you through the museum and this area. Barry McNealy is also a teacher, so his schedule is based on working around classes, but if you can figure out the time, it’s worth it. He has fantastic knowledge of the museum and movement, making for an enriching tour. If you happen to be in town on Saturdays, he also runs free tours. Coming up April 2022, McNealy offers hour-long tours starting at the main entrance to BCRI. These also include the Fourth Avenue Business District. You can also try calling Barry for a private tour at 205-786-7631. 

Barry McNealy guides Darley through the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute.
Barry McNealy guides Darley through the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute.

There are other great tours, tour guides and locations. These are but a few of the great “experience givers” we met and filmed with on our travels. You can also follow our 5 day/ 4 night itinerary for Alabama’s Civil Rights Trail on your own and book these guides or have our preferred travel advisor out the trip together for you! 

How to Watch Travels with Darley: Look for the new season, Season 9, on your local PBS TV station. These episodes are also coming to Create TV  and Ovation TV’s Journy, a free app available on your  phone, tablet, or smart tv device of your choice, including Roku, Plex, Vewd, Samsung TV Plus, Apple TV, Zumo, Google Play and more. 

See what we’ve filmed for 51 half hour episodes! Fifty-one hours of the series now reach over 96% of the USA on PBS stations. Look out for new seasons and repeats of past episdoes on your local PBS station and Create TV. Binge the series’ first 24 half hours on Amazon PrimeWondrium and watch the most recent 13 half hours on Ovation TV’s Journy. Video shorts from the series are also available on Darley’s YouTube Channel.

Let’s Get Social! Lots of fun behind the scenes are also online through Darley’s @TravelswithDarley Facebook page and  @darleynewman handles on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and more professional and business related information is on LinkedIn.

Meet the guides in “Travels with Darley: Alabama’s Civil Rights Trail Part I” and “Part II” on your local PBS TV stations.