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Article Archive/January 2010

Updated January 29, 2010

Charlotte Black History Month
February is Black History Month

Celebrate Black History Month by learning the history of Charlotte from an African-American perspective.

Dr. Reginald Hawkins
Civil Rights Hero

Click for Black/African-American Heritage Tour Info!By Jay Whipple/Trend Magazine

Dr. Reginald "Hawk" Hawkins was a dentist, Presbyterian Minister, and Civil Rights leader who marched with Dr. King, organized voter registration drives, boycotts, and sit ins in the 1960’s during the Civil Rights era in Charlotte, NC. He was considered by mainstream Charlotte (White and Black) as a menace to society for his unyielding and unwavering quest for equality for himself and all Blacks during one of the most racially charged decades in American history.

When threats by locals did not impede his progress, other means were used to quiet the outspoken champion of justice. On a chilly morning on November 22, 1965, Dr. Hawkins and his family were awakened by a loud and thunderous boom from outside his home. After ensuring that he and his family were okay, he ventured outside to investigate the source of the disturbing noise. He heard tires screeching and caught a glimpse of a pick up truck that had apparently made a u turn after being halted by a train.

It turns out that the loud noise on the outside of his home was caused by a make shift bomb that blew out the entire East side where the family room was located. Fortunately, a dogwood tree had blocked the bomb from landing near his and his children’s bedrooms. Within 15 to 30 minutes of that bombing three other bombings occurred nearby at the homes of Kelly Alexander, Sr. (Then State NAACP Chairman), Fred Alexander (Then City Councilman), and Julius Chambers (Civil Rights Attorney). Fortunately no one was hurt at any of the bombing sites.

Dr. Hawkins passed away at the age of 83 in September of 2007 and to my knowledge the perpetrators of these events have yet to be brought to justice. The Mayor at the time of the bombings was Stanford R. Brookshire (Brookshire Freeway).

Note: Dr. Hawkins participated in our tour and the above information was extracted from his personal account of the bombing.

See and learn more about Dr. Reginald Hawkins and over 75 other sites on our Annual Charlotte Black/African-American Heritage Tour and Pilgrimage (Black History Month), Charlotte's "Original" Daily Black/African-American Heritage Tour (For Individuals), or the Charlotte Black/African-American Heritage Tour ( For Groups).

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Click for Black/African-American Heritage Tour Info!

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