Montgomery in Montgomery County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
Aurelia Eliscera Shines Browder
Civil Rights Pioneer
Aurelia Eliscera Shines Browder was born January 29, 1919, in Montgomery, Alabama. She graduated with honors in 1956 from Alabama State Teachers College (now Alabama State University).
In April 1955, Browder's refusal to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus to a white passenger led to her arrest. During the Montgomery Bus Boycott, which began in December 1955, she was a volunteer driver for those who declined to ride the buses. On February 1, 1956, serving as lead plaintiff, Browder in conjunction with Claudette Colvin, Mary Louise Smith, and Susie McDonald, also arrested for the same offense, filed suit in U. S. Federal District Court challenging the constitutionality of Montgomery's bus segregation statutes.
A three-judge panel ruled in a 2-1 decision on June 5, 1956, that the bus segregation statues were unconstitutional and in violation of the 14th Amendment's equal protection clause. In an appeal on November 13, 1956, the U. S. Supreme Court unanimously affirmed
Continuing her involvement in the Civil Rights Movement, Browder worked with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). Locally she worked with the Women's Political Council, the Montgomery Improvement Association (MIA), and tutored blacks for voter registration exams.
Browder's primary residence during the bus desegregation case and until her death in 1971 was this one-story brick house at 1012 Highland Avenue in Centennial Hill, once Montgomery's most prestigious black community. Portions of Centennial Hill are listed on the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage.
Erected by Alabama Historical Association.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African Americans • Civil Rights • Women. In addition, it is included in the Alabama Historical Association, and the Historically Black Colleges and Universities series lists. A significant historical month for this entry is January 1777.
Location. 32° 22.32′ N, 86° 17.664′ W. Marker is in Montgomery, Alabama, in Montgomery County. Marker is at the Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: Highland Avenue, Montgomery AL 36104, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Harris House (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); South Jackson Street / Victor Hugo Tulane (about 600 feet away); Minister's Home / Dr. Martin Luther King (about 700 feet away); The Hon. Rufus A. Lewis (approx. 0.2 miles away); Hale Infirmary / The Lynching of Willie Temple (approx. 0.2 miles away); Georgia Gilmore (approx. 0.2 miles away); Hall Street Baptist Church (approx. 0.2 miles away); Johnnie R. and Arlam Carr, Sr. Home (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Montgomery.
Regarding Aurelia Eliscera Shines Browder. Aurelia Eliscera Shines Browder's major contribution to the civil rights movement didn't keep her from segregation in death. Her marker at Lincoln Cemetery in Montgomery was found leaning against a tree, and no one even knows where she's buried.
Credits. This page was last revised on August 30, 2020. It was originally submitted on January 19, 2014, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 1,177 times since then and 255 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on January 19, 2014, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.