Half a century on, carnage in Charleston resonates in the South

A half century ago in this deeply southern city, a racially motivated attack on a black church left four young girls dead and helped galvanize a civil rights movement that changed voting laws across the United States. For those with ties to that deadly event, Wednesday’s shootings in a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina, another deeply southern city 400 miles (644 km) distant, echoed the tragedy and compounded the frustration that more progress has not been made. “It definitely brought back memories,” said Lisa McNair, 50, the niece of one of the girls who died in the 1963 bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church, which happened before McNair was even born.

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