BIRMINGHAM, Ala., May 13, 1963 (UPI)-An advance detail of federal forces set up headquarters today five blocks from a Negro section of Birmingham where a four-hour riot erupted Sunday morning. Federal troops were poised at jump-off spots 80 miles south and 60 miles east of this racially torn industrial city on orders from President Kennedy.
Birmingham was quiet and on the surface at least, near-normal today. But heavily-armed state police remained in the riot-torn area.
An army colonel and about 15 soldiers worked through the night bringing equipment into an office building that houses several government agencies.
The soldiers arrived aboard a C-130 transport shortly before midnight.
State authorities claimed the crisis here was "firmly under control" and said the riot-trained federal troops that flew into Maxwell Air Force Base at Montgomery and Ft. McClellan at Anniston were not needed.
Kennedy said in calling out the troops that he would "do whatever must be done to preserve order" in Birmingham.
Twenty-two persons were injured in the pitched battles between Negroes and police that climaxed six weeks of anti-segregation demonstrations.
Gov. George Wallace protested the sending to troops to Alabama. In a telegram to the President yesterday, he said "sufficient state law enforcement officers are available to maintain peace and order" in Birmingham.
A source close to Wallace said there was a good chance the governor would seek a court order enjoining the federal forces from leaving Maxwell 80 miles south of here.
The stone, brick and bare-knuckle battling of Negroes with police was touched off by the dynamiting of the home of the Rev. A. D. King, brother of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., and of the A. G. Gaston Motel, headquarters of the integration movement which began a massive campaign to tear down the racial barriers here six weeks ago.
Police quoted witnesses to the bombings as saying they saw four men, their faces covered partially to hinder identification, in a car at the scene. Wallace posted a $5,000 reward for the arrest and conviction of the men responsible for the bombings.
Stores and homes were set afire as were a taxicab and a motorcycle during the riots.
Policeman J. N. Spivey was stabbed twice in the back. A taxicab driver was pulled from his car and beaten.
Police Inspector William Haley was struck with a brick and it took six stitches to close the wound.
Later yesterday, at Anniston, 60 miles to the northeast, two Negro homes and a church were damaged by shotgun blasts. There were no injuries.
State highway patrolmen, reinforced by conservation agents, alcoholic beverage control board men, sheriff's deputies and deputized National Guardsmen, joined city police in cordoning of a 20-block area near the downtown section here.
Rev. King said the blasts were "expressive death groans of a dying system."
The Atlanta integration leader said he did not think the racial troubles would nullify an agreement announced last Friday between white and Negro leaders on a desegregation plan over the next 90 days.
King praised President Kennedy for his direct action. The Negro minister said it showed the administration "will not let the rights of Negroes be trampled on."
Mayor Art Hanes blamed the bombings and the race riot on Attorney General Robert Kennedy. "If any blood is spilled," Hanes said, "I hope it catches in his throat and he chokes on it."