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.
|Publisher:||Arcadia Publishing SC|
|Product dimensions:||6.69(w) x 9.61(h) x 0.38(d)|
About the Author
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.