November 14, 2021
In 1965, a group of activists, under the leadership of Cecil B. Moore, began picketing on N College Avenue in North Philadelphia, in an organized effort to desegregate the school and allow for Black students to enroll. This civil rights group, the Cecil B. Moore Freedom Fighters, were organized through the Philadelphia chapter of the NAACP, and eventually succeeded in ending segregation at the college.
"Cecil B. Moore, who was the president of the NAACP, said that they were going to go to Girard College and agitate, and try to push the courts and push the dialogue," said Kenneth Salaam in a documentary segment of Philadelphia: The Great Experiment. Salaam was a member of the NAACP Youth Council under the direction of Cecil B. Moore, and was one of the members of the Freedom Fighters who participated in the protests at Girard College.
Join us tomorrow, November 13, from 1-4 PM at N 22nd St & N College Ave for the mural dedication of “Cecil B. Moore Freedom Fighters,” painted by artists Felix St. Fort and Gabe Tiberino. This mural highlights young people behind this iconic Philadelphia civil rights group. pic.twitter.com/0xoN9saVCo— Mural Arts (@muralarts) November 12, 2021
Members of the North Philadelphia community met Saturday for the unveiling, where both Tiberino and St. Fort spoke alongside some of the demonstrators from the protests. Mural Arts Philadelphia hopes that the mural will "connect today's youth with the civil rights and voter registration work of the young people from over 50 years ago," according to their website.
Gabe Tiberino, a graduate of the Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts and the Philadelphia Academy of Fine Arts, has had both murals and paintings featured in exhibitions across Philadelphia and the rest of the country.
Felix St. Fort, a graduate of the University of the Arts, has been working with Mural Arts Philadelphia for over a decade.