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Lynching memorial and museum in Montgomery open to public

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) – The public is getting its first look at a lynching memorial and museum in Montgomery, Alabama.

The National Memorial for Peace and Justice, opening Thursday, is dedicated to 4,400 individuals who lost their lives in lynchings and other racial killings between 1877 and 1950. Their names are engraved on 800 steel rectangles, one for each U.S. county where lynchings occurred.

A museum is also opening in Montgomery, called The Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration.

This photo shows a bronze statue called “Raise Up” as part of the display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in racist lynchings, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The national memorial aims to teach about America’s past in hope of promoting understanding and healing. It’s scheduled to open on Thursday. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Launch events include a “Peace and Justice Summit” featuring celebrities and activists like Ava DuVernay, Marian Wright Edelman and Gloria Steinem.

The summit, museum and memorial are projects of the Equal Justice Initiative, a Montgomery-based legal advocacy group founded by attorney Bryan Stevenson. Stevenson won a MacArthur “genius” award for his human rights work.

This photo shows a bronze statue called "Raise Up", part of the display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in lynchings, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The memorial and an accompanying museum that open this week in Montgomery are a project of the nonprofit Equal Justice Initiative, a legal advocacy group in Montgomery. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

This photo shows a bronze statue called “Raise Up”, part of the display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in lynchings, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The memorial and an accompanying museum that open this week in Montgomery are a project of the nonprofit Equal Justice Initiative, a legal advocacy group in Montgomery. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

This photo shows names of "unknown" lynching victims as a part of the display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in lynchings, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The memorial aims to teach about America's past in hope of promoting understanding and healing. The memorial and an accompanying museum that open this week. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

This photo shows names of “unknown” lynching victims as a part of the display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in lynchings, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The memorial aims to teach about America’s past in hope of promoting understanding and healing. The memorial and an accompanying museum that open this week. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

This photo shows part of the display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in lynchings, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The memorial and an accompanying museum that open this week in Montgomery are a project of the nonprofit Equal Justice Initiative, a legal advocacy group in Montgomery. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

This photo shows part of the display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in lynchings, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The memorial and an accompanying museum that open this week in Montgomery are a project of the nonprofit Equal Justice Initiative, a legal advocacy group in Montgomery. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Part of a statue depicting chained people is on display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in racist lynchings, Sunday, April 22, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The national memorial aims to teach about America's past in hope of promoting understanding and healing. It's scheduled to open on Thursday. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Part of a statue depicting chained people is on display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in racist lynchings, Sunday, April 22, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The national memorial aims to teach about America’s past in hope of promoting understanding and healing. It’s scheduled to open on Thursday. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

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