On Tuesday, President Donald Trump signed a bill designating the home of Medgar and Myrlie Evers as a National Monument in Jackson, Mississippi, NBC News reports.
“Medgar and Myrlie Evers are heroes whose contributions to the advancement of civil rights in Mississippi and our nation cannot be overstated,” U.S. Sen Roger Wicker said in a statement.
Medgar and Myrlie Evers grew up in a state that did not recognize them as full citizens. Both were Mississippi born and raised in loving homes, yet they both learned at an early age that their lives would be devalued by the larger society.
Medgar Evers served in the Army in World War II and fought at the Battle of Normandy.
In 1954, Medger became the first field secretary in Mississippi for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. He led marches, investigated racial violence, fought for equality and organized voter registration drives. Through it all, he promoted a message of peace and unity.
He was killed in 1963, on the steps of his home.
Myrlie, the widow of Medgar has carried on the icon’s legacy by becoming a pioneering activist and journalist in her own career. From 1995 to 1998 she was national chairwoman of the NAACP.
The home which will stand as a National monument was donated to Tougaloo College, a history Black school, by the Evers family in 1993.
It was now be taken over by the government from Tougaloo. Visitors can tour the modest home, which was renovated in the early 90s.
The National Park Service which named the three-bedroom home as a national historic landmark in 1996, is awaiting Trump signature in order to begin making changes.
“The immediate next steps if and when it gets signed by the president is the park service would then seek to engage with Tougaloo College as the owner of the home, to work with them and the family as well,” Ben West of the National Park Service told Mississippi Public Broadcasting on Monday.