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SEPTA Honors The Life & Legacy Of Cecil B. Moore Through New Exhibit

Andrew Busch
SEPTA Press Officer

Cecil B. Moore's life and many accomplishments are not easily summed up. There are many facets of his legacy - including his military, legal and political careers, and his legacy as a civil rights leader in the City of Philadelphia.

A new educational exhibit at the SEPTA station that bears his name highlights these key aspects of his story, and will hopefully encourage the thousands of people who pass through every day to learn more.

The exhibit features a plaque and mosaic that are mounted on a main wall of the northern side of the Cecil B. Moore Station. The station, with a daily ridership of over 7,500, is one of the busiest on the Broad Street Line, serving major destinations such as Temple University and the bustling North Broad Street corridor, as well as communities in North Philadelphia.

"SEPTA is proud to be able to honor the life and legacy of Cecil B. Moore with this exhibit," said SEPTA General Manager Joseph M. Casey. "We invite everyone to come and see this display, and learn more about this remarkable Philadelphian."

Those who worked alongside Cecil B. Moore and continue to spread his message came to the station for the re-dedication ceremony. Members of the Cecil B. Moore Freedom fighters talked about their experiences with him, and joined SEPTA officials and other distinguished guests, such as U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah, in celebrating the new exhibit.

Two of Moore's daughters, Cecily Banks and Alexis Moore, were also on-hand, and shared their memories of Cecil B. Moore as a father and family man. They said they hope the exhibit helps to preserve his legacy.

Banks said she hopes people who view the exhibit can find inspiration in her father's history and apply it to their own lives.

"The key message is, if you really want to accomplish something, nothing can stop you. You can find a way to do it," she said. "No matter how daunting, no matter how many obstacles are in your way or how insurmountable they appear, you can achieve your goals."

Local artist Jonathan Mandell was commissioned to create the mosaic, taking on the challenge to tell Cecil B. Moore's story within the space of the mosaic, which measures eight-feet long and is four-feet high.

"He was a larger-than-life figure," Mandell said. "There was so much to work with, and it was a great honor to be involved in this effort."

The mosaic was made using ceramic tile embellished with hand-blown glass shards, metals and various semi-precious stones and materials.

"My approach to mosaic involves using the grout joints as drawing lines. They are designed to establish depth perspective and the volume of form," Mandell explained.

"I work with a range of materials that enrich the surface texture and color scheme. This mosaic was made using ceramic tile which was embellished with hand blown glass shards, metals and various semi-precious stones and minerals."

The central panel of the piece depicts Cecil B. Moore in his role as a community leaders and public speaker. It includes a famous quote from Mr. Moore that speaks to the heart of his life's work: "Stand up and be an American Citizen and exercise your rights."

The upper left portion features Cecil B. Moore with fellow civil rights advocates, including Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X and famed Philadelphia radio broadcaster Georgie Wood. Below this is a depiction of Cecil B. Moore leading a desegregation rally at Girard College.


The new mosaic honoring the life and legacy of Cecil B. Moore, which is on display at the SEPTA station that bears his name.



Cecily Banks and Alexis Moore, two of Cecil B. Moore's daughters, look at the plaque that is part of the exhibit.



SEPTA General Manager Joseph M. Casey (left) listens as U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah speaks during the ceremony.



The Cecil B. Moore Freedom Fighters share their memories of Cecil B. Moore, and discuss his legacy.



A group that includes members of the Cecil B. Moore Freedom Fighters, two of his daughters, SEPTA GM Casey and mosaic artist Jonathan Mandell gather for a picture after the ceremony.