Oak Park and the Montgomery Zoo

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Established at the beginning of the 20th century with a total of 41 acres, Oak Park was the social and recreational center of Alabama's capital city, Montgomery. It was here in 1935 that a menagerie of animals was housed in facilities built by the Works Progress Administration called the Oak Park Zoo. As the civil rights movement gathered steam in the 1950s, there was a class action suit to desegregate the city's parks, including the zoo. In response, all parks were closed, including Oak Park. In 1967, plans were approved for a 34-acre recreational park in north Montgomery, which included acreage for a small zoo. Unfortunately, although the zoo was scheduled to open in 1971, thirteen years after the closing of Oak Park, the opening was delayed for almost a year when the zoo's first director died in a car accident just 37 days after accepting his post. The opening of the new Montgomery Zoo was finally celebrated in 1972 and included the happy homecoming of a female capuchin monkey, an original resident of Oak Park.
ISBN: 9780738553115
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Arcadia Publishing
State: Alabama
Series: Images of America
Images: 200
Pages: 128
Dimensions: 6.5 (w) x 9.25 (h)
Heather S. Trevino and Linda E. Pastorello are conservation biologists and local historians of the Montgomery Zoo. Both are graduate students at Auburn University specializing in captive management.
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