Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Freedom Riders: Home

This guide was created to tie in with the visiting exhibit from the Gilder Lehrman Institute, Freedom Riders.

Freedom Riders Trailer

Who were the Freedom Riders and what did they want to accomplish?

Watch the PBS Film

Watch the Complete Movie

"FREEDOM RIDERS is the powerful harrowing and ultimately inspirational story of six months in 1961 that changed America forever. From May until November 1961, more than 400 black and white Americans risked their lives—and many endured savage beatings and imprisonment—for simply traveling together on buses and trains as they journeyed through the Deep South. Deliberately violating Jim Crow laws, the Freedom Riders met with bitter racism and mob violence along the way, sorely testing their belief in nonviolent activism".

Download Teacher's Guide to the movie.

Short Segments of the movie.

About the Exhibit

Freedom Riders is a traveling exhibition developed by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in partnership with AMERICAN EXPERIENCE. Major funding for the traveling exhibition provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Exclusive corporate funding for AMERICAN EXPERIENCE is provided by Liberty Mutual. Major funding provided by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Additional funding provided by Lynn Bay Dayton, Rodger & Dawn Nordblom, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and public television viewers. 

Click Here to go to the online companion exhibit to the Freedom Riders Exhibit created by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.

PBS Freedom Riders : Retracing the Rides


           PBS American Experience : Freedom Riders - Interactive Map

"Original CORE Freedom Ride was May 4-24, 1961. Thirteen Freedom Riders - male and female, black and white, young and old left Washington, DC in two separate buses.  Their goal is to test and challenge segregated travel facilities throughout the South".   (Click on the See Other Freedom Rides to trace all of the rides from May - December)

Freedom Riders Traveling Exhibit from The Gilder Lehrman Institute

Freedom Riders Exhibit

Appearing at Ashley High School and Murray Middle School

January 4-13 : Ashley High School Media Center 

Open to the Public 5:00-7:30 pm on January 5 and January 12

January 14 : Exhibition and Showcase : Minnie Evans Art Center

January 15 - 25 : Murray Middle School Media Center

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

Registration Link for Educators and Students

Link Your Account to Eugene Ashley High School

Freedom Riders : Audio

Hear original Freedom Riders tell their personal stories.

Front, left to right: Joe Perkins, Charles Person, Frances Bergman, Genevieve Hughes, and Jimmy MacDonald; Back, left to right: John Lewis, Jim Peck, Ed Blankenheim, Hank Thomas, Walter Bergman, James Farmer. Not pictured: Rev. Benjamin Elton Cox, and Albert Bigelow.