Major Events of the Civil Rights Movement in the Early 1960s

Major Events of the Civil Rights
Movement in the Early 1960s
APUSH - Spiconardi
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Recalling the video clip, The Century: America’s Time –
Happy Days
What were the major civil rights event in the 1950s?
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, KS
Little Rock Nine
Rosa Parks
Montgomery Bus Boycott
Massive Resistance
In 1956, 82 out of 106 southern
congressmen and every senator
except Lyndon B. Johnson, Albert
Gore and Estes Kefauver signed a
Southern Manifesto
Denounced the Brown decision
Accused the Supreme Court of a
“clear abuse of judicial power”
Massive Resistance  Sen. Harry F.
Byrd (D-VA) called for resistance to
forced integration; slowdown
integration by passing laws
Example: Closed public schools that
integrated and offered funds to white
students to attend private schools
Greensboro, NC and Sit-ins
Greensboro prided itself in being
the first city in the South to
declare its willingness to abide by
the Brown v. Board of Ed. decision
However, by 1960, most schools
were still segregated and public
spaces were still segregated
Upset with the slow pace of
change, students sit at the counter
of the local Woolworth’s, which
was reserved for whites.
Students did this every day for 5
months until they were served
Greensboro, NC and Sit-ins
The civil disobedience
sparked sit-ins in other
parts of the South
Often resulted in…
Birmingham, AL
Birmingham may have been the
most segregated and violent
city in the South
Over 50 bombings of black
homes and institutions since
Blacks demonstrated for
greater economic
opportunities and the
desegregation of local
Leaders invite Martin Luther
King to come to Birmingham
King is arrested during
Letter from a Birmingham Jail
King writes a letter from prison in
response to local clergy who were
calling for patience
“Perhaps it is easy for those who have never felt the
stinging dark of segregation to say, ‘Wait.’ But when you
have seen vicious mobs lynch your mothers and fathers
at will and drown your sisters and brothers at
whim;…when you see the vast majority of your twenty
million Negro brothers smothering in an airtight cage of
poverty in the midst of an affluent society; when you
suddenly find your tongue twisted…as you seek to
explain to your six-year-old daughter why she can’t go
to the public amusement park…and see the tears
welling up in her eyes when she is told Funtown is
closed to colored children…then you will understand
why we find it difficult to wait.”
Birmingham, AL
After his release from prison, King
calls on students to demonstrate
Birmingham officials responds with
Television captures the images of
attack dogs, fire hoses, and
excessive force
Many Americans and JFK come to
endorse the goals of the Civil
Rights Movement
Kennedy realized he could not call the
U.S. the beacon of freedom while
practicing racial inequality within its
own borders
Kennedy calls on Congress to pass
civil rights legislation
Civil Rights Address on June 11,
Birmingham, AL
Segregationist continue the violence in Birmingham
Bomb explodes at a Baptist church in September 1963 killing
four girls
“Jobs and Freedom”: The March on
The March on Washington
(August 28, 1963)
250,000 black and white Americans
gather to show support for civil
rights legislation
Public-works program to reduce
Increase in minimum wage
Law protecting against employment
While reflecting cooperation
between whites and blacks…
Women did not speak at the event
SNCC leader John Lewis’ speech
was edited by organizers
“I Have a Dream”
Interestingly, the original speech did not
have “I have a dream” incorporated into it