WASHINGTON—A bill authored by U.S. Rep. Kendra Horn (Dem., Okla.) will rename the Downtown Oklahoma City Post Office after civil rights pioneer Clara Shepard Luper.
Oklahoma City was the first sit-in desegregation effort in the Civil Rights Movement and was led by Mrs. Luper, a history schoolteacher who launched the effort against Katz Drug Store.
“Oklahoma City was ground zero for America’s Civil Rights Movement,” Congresswoman Horn said.
“We need to share that proud history and to make sure that the story of the historic sit-in movement led by Clara Luper and the NAACP Youth Council is never lost.
“Renaming Oklahoma City’s Downtown Post Office as the Clara Luper Post Office is just one small step we can take to honor those who struggled for civil rights here in Oklahoma and inspired activists from across the country to do the same.
“Our fight for equality and freedom is not over. I hope that the Clara Luper Post Office serves as a reminder of the work we have left to do.”
U.S. Rep. Horn said the post office, at 305 NW Fifth St., is near the former site of Katz Drug Store, where in 1958 Mrs. Luper led a civil rights sit-in to protest the refusal to serve Blacks.
Luper also led a sanitation strike in 1959 near the post office.
Luper died in 2011 at 88.
The MAPS 4 projects approved by Oklahoma City voters last month include a civil rights museum to be named for Mrs. Luper.