(side 1)City of St. Jude
Founded by Father Harold Purcell in the 1930s, the City of St. Jude included church, school, medical facilities, social center and rectory. Its mission was to provide spiritual, educational, social and health services for Montgomery's black citizens. Distinguished for its Romanesque architecture and landscaping, site was designed by architects William Calham and Joseph Maschi. Leading the way in nondiscriminatory health care, the institution helped organize the county's first prenatal care program, school of practical nursing and first drug and alcohol treatment center in the state. In 1953 it provided primary polio treatment. Hospital closed, 1985; church and school continue to serve the community in the spirit as that of its founder.
(side 2)The Selma to Montgomery MarchThey Camped Here
On March 24, 1965, more than 25,000 weary marchers, seeking voter rights, rested on these grounds. Joining them were Harry Belafonte, Sammy Davis, Jr., Leonard Bernstein, Mahalia Jackson, Shelly Winters and other supporters. As no public facilities were available to them, Father Paul J. Mullaney, director, City of St. Jude, opened parish grounds to crowd where they rested under protection of St. Jude Thaddeus, patron saint of hopeless cases and champion of impossible causes. The next morning marchers continued on to state capitol to further cause of voter registration.