Alabama senators took a step toward renaming Selma’s Edmund Pettus bridge, a historic site in the voting rights movement that also bears the name of a Ku Klux Klan officer.
Senators approved a resolution on Wednesday to rename it the Journey to Freedom Bridge. The bridge became a symbol of the fight for voting rights after marchers were beaten by state troopers there in 1965.
The bridge is Selma’s most notable landmark, but its KKK association has drawn the ire of some in the majority black city. Pettus was a US senator, a Confederate general and a KKK grand dragon.
The Alabama house of representatives has not voted on the idea.
Lee Sentell of the Alabama tourism department said changing the bridge’s name could threaten its status as a national historic landmark.