• Brown v. Board of
– Ruled that schools should be racially integrated
• Rosa Parks 1955
– Montgomery Bus
• Troops sent to
Little Rock, Ark.
• Louisiana had a law requiring separate R.R. cars.
• Adolph Plessy was 1/8 black and refused to ride in a colored car
• Supreme Court: this law did not violate the
14 th Amendment
• Upheld separate but equal.
• Laws aimed at separating the races
• States could not discriminate but individuals could do so privately
• Literacy, property requirements, and poll taxes held AA down.
• Events of WWII set the stage for the Civil Rights
– Demand for soldiers
– 700,000 AA served in WWII.
– Returned from war to fight for their rights
Challenging Segregation in Court
• Charles Houston:
Howard U. prof that trained AA law students
– Focus on attacking public schools
• Thurgood Marshall:
NAACP lawyer that lead the charge
– Would become the 1 st
AA Supreme Court
• Landmark case for
• 9 year old AA girl was forced to travel 21 blocks from her house to an all AA school
• Went to the Supreme
– Ruled that segregation was unconstitutional
Resistance to School Integration
• Highly populated AA areas, segregation was still supported
– Whites were scared of losing control
– “Southern Manifesto”
• Denounced the “Brown” decision and called on states to resist
• Racist school board and Governor
• “Little Rock 9”
– AA students that were to be the first to go to
Little Rock Cent. HS
• Ike ordered the U.S. military to escort the students in
– Broadcasted over t.v.
• Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white man
• 381 days, AA refused to ride the buses in
– Lead by Dr. King
• 1956, the S.C. outlawed bus segregation.
• Dr. King’s philosophy
– “Soul Force” or nonviolent resistance
– Civil disobedience
– Adherence to nonviolence
• Student Nonviolent
• Sit-ins: AA protestors would sit down at a segregated lunch counter and not leave until they were served.
• Spread form N. – S.