Community leaders and activists gathered at the IU South Bend Civil Rights Heritage Center to celebrate the designation of the Engman Natatorium as a local historic landmark.South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, IU South Bend Interim Chancellor Jann Joseph, representatives of theCity Historic Preservation Committee, and others spoke of the accomplishment and what it means to the community.
The Engman Natatorium at 1040 West Washington Street is a powerful symbol of the civil rights struggle in South Bend. For almost 30 years, it was a segregated public swimming pool and denied entry to African Americans. Through a unique partnership with the City of South Bend, IU South Bend, and the South Bend Heritage Foundation it is the home of the Civil Rights Heritage Center which is an active learning center open to the community. It attracts more than 5,000 visitors each year.
Local historic landmark status puts mechanisms in place that ensures the building is protected from erroneous or damaging changes, ensuring the building remains as close to its original integrity as possible for generations to come.For more information go to https://clas.iusb.edu/centers/civil-rights/