Sec. Kempthorne to Help Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Desegregation of Little Rock Central

Dirk KempthorneWASHINGTON, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne will attend events on Monday, September 24 and Tuesday, September 25 in Little Rock, Ark., to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the desegregation of Central High School.

On September 25, 1957, soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division escorted a group of African American teenagers through the front doors of Little Rock Central High School. On that day those students, who we now know as the Little Rock Nine, took the first steps toward ending desegregation in little Rock public schools. That day brought our nation further along the path toward equality.

Secretary Kempthorne will participate in events to commemorate that historic event, including a ceremony to dedicate the new visitor center at the National Park Service’s Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, September 24, 2007, and the city’s anniversary commemoration celebrating the desegregation of Little Rock Central High School in 1957 at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, September 25, 2007. Both events are open to the public.