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The Civil Rights Movement: 

The Civil Rights Movement By: Latisha Reggie Geron Gerard Jermel Jeremy Nigel

The Beginning: 

The Beginning The African American civil rights movement has roots in the earliest resistance by blacks to their involuntary arrival in America and their unequal treatment. As slaves in America, blacks protested through work slowdowns and sobotages, escapes, and rebellions: while free blacks in the North opposed racial discrimination through petitions, litigation, and more aggressive nonviolent tactics such as boycotts from 1844 to 1855 that pressured Boston authorities to desegregate public schools

The Movement: 

The Movement The South where slavery endured until 1865 and where at least 90 percent of black Americans lived until 1910. posed the crucial testing ground for civil rights activism. The rise of Jim Crow laws throughout the South beginning in the late nineteenth century triggered black resistance in every state of the former Confederacy; most of this resistance centered on boycotts of segregated streetcars.

What happened…: 

What happened… Black civil rights activity also succumbed to a national resurgence of racism, evident in the Supreme Court verdict in the Plessy vs. Ferguson that sustained a Louisiana segregation statue for affording blacks separate-but-equal facilities.

Important Cases: 

Important Cases Plessy vs. Ferguson Guinn vs. United States Smith vs. Allright Brown vs. Board of Education

Plessy vs. Ferguson: 

Plessy vs. Ferguson The Plessy vs. Ferguson Case established the “separate but equal” doctrine that pervaded life in the American South for over fifty years.   In 1892 Homer Adolph Plessy was a thirty-year old shoemaker from New Orleans, Louisiana. He was only 1/8 Black (he had an African American great-grandmother) and he and his entire family “passed” as White, but the State of Louisiana considered him Black.

Guinn vs. United States : 

Guinn vs. United States In the 1915 Guinn vs. United States, attorneys for the NAACP persuaded a unanimous Supreme Court to declare unconstitutional the “grandfather clause”, by which some states had disfranchised blacks through harsh registered tests while exempting citizens-almost invariably whites whose grandfathers had voted.

Smith vs. Allright: 

Smith vs. Allright The NAACP also beat down the formal exclusion of blacks from party primary elections in the South, through litigation culminating with the Supreme Court case Smith vs. Allright.

Brown vs. Board of Education: 

Brown vs. Board of Education Brown vs. Board of Education was the landmark case that resulted in desegregation of public schools. Linda Brown was a little African American girl attending third grade at public school in Topeka, Kansas, in 1951. She lived a few blocks from a White elementary school, but when her father attempted to enroll her in the neighborhood school, his request was denied. Linda Brown ended up traveling about a mile every day to get to the nearest Black elementary school.

…Brown vs. Board of Education: 

…Brown vs. Board of Education In the summer of 1951 Mr. Brown's case was heard by the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas. The remedy requested was an injunction to prohibit segregation of the public schools in Topeka. The NAACP argued that separating Black children from White children was sending a message to them that they were somehow inferior, so there was no way that the education provided could be equal.

Leaders Involved in the Civil Rights Movement: 

Leaders Involved in the Civil Rights Movement

Rosa Parks: 

Rosa Parks Parks, Rosa Louise McCauley (1913- ) - Civil Right Movement African American civil rights activist, who is often called the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement. Her arrest for refusing to give up her seat on a bus triggered the Montgomery bus boycott of 1955 and 1956 and set in motion the test case for the desegregation of public transportation.

Martin Luther King Jr: 

Martin Luther King Jr King, Martin Luther, Jr. (1929-1968) - Civil Right Movement African American clergyman and Nobel Prize winner, one of the principal leaders of the American Civil Rights Movement and a prominent advocate of nonviolent protest. King's challenges to segregation and racial discrimination in the 1950s and 1960s helped convince many white Americans to support the cause of civil rights in the United States. After his assassination in 1968, King became a symbol of protest in the struggle for racial justice.

Malcolm X: 

Malcolm X Malcolm X - Civil Right Movement (1925-1965), a leading figure in the 20th-century movement for black liberation in the United States, and arguably its most enduring symbol. Malcolm X has been called many things: father of Black Power, religious fanatic, closet conservative, incipient socialist and a menace to society.

Booker T. Washington: 

Booker T. Washington Booker T. Washington appealed to whites for economic toleration and racial peace while publicly renouncing agitation for social and political rights

Muhammad Ali: 

Muhammad Ali Ali, Muhammad or Clay Cassius (1942- ) - Civil Right Movement African American heavyweight prizefighter, antiwar protester, and international ambassador of goodwill. As the dominant heavyweight boxer of the 1960s and 1970s, Muhammad Ali won an Olympic gold medal, captured the professional world heavyweight championship on three separate occasions, and successfully defended his title 19 times. Through his bold assertions of black pride, his conversion to the Muslim faith, and his outspoken opposition to the Vietnam War (1959-1975), Ali became a highly controversial figure during the turbulent 1960s. At the height of his fame, Ali was described as "the most recognizable human being on earth."

Ruby Bridges: 

Ruby Bridges Ruby Bridges - Civil Right Movement was born in Mississippi She grew up in a very poor family. When she was at the age of 4 Ruby and her family moved to New Orleans. When Ruby was old enough to attend school the judge ordered Ruby to go to the Frantz Elementary School for whites only. Ruby was the first black child to walk into Frantz Elementary School to attend the first grade. One day When Ruby was walking into school she stopped and said a prayer.This turned into a daily routine for Ruby.

Sidney Poitier: 

Sidney Poitier Sidney Poitier - Civil Right Movement was raised in the Bahamas and returned to the United States as a teenager. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II and moved to New York, New York, in 1945 to study acting. At his first audition for the American Negro Theater (ANT), Poitier was rejected because of his strong Caribbean accent. After only six months, he had perfected a mainstream American accent by imitating radio announcers... Poitier also starred in the first mainstream movies to condone interracial marriages and permit a mixed couple to hug and kiss (Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, 1967) and to attack apartheid (The Wilby Conspiracy, 1975). The New York Times' Vincent Canby once pointed out: "Poitier does not make movies, he makes milestones."

Thurgood Marshall: 

Thurgood Marshall Thurgood Marshall was a courageous civil rights lawyer during a period when racial segregation was the law of the land. At a time when a large portion of American society refused to extend equality to black people, Marshall realized that one of the best ways to bring about change was through the legal system. Between 1938 and 1961, he presented more than 30 civil rights cases before the Supreme Court. He won 29 of them.

Little Rock Nine: 

Little Rock Nine The Little Rock Nine, as they later came to be called, were the first black teenagers to attend all-white Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1957. These remarkable young African-American students challenged segregation in the deep South and won.

Civil Rights Movement Timeline: 

Civil Rights Movement Timeline 1954 -- U.S. Supreme Court declares school segregation unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka ruling 1955 -- Rosa Parks refuses to move to the back of a Montgomery, Alabama, bus as required by city ordinance; boycott follows and bus segregation ordinance is declared unconstitutional. Federal Interstate Commerce Commission bans segregation on interstate trains and buses.


1956 -- Coalition of Southern congressmen calls for massive resistance to Supreme Court desegregation rulings. 1957 -- Arkansas Gov. Orval Rubus uses National Guard to block nine black students from attending a Little Rock High School; following a court order, President Eisenhower sends in federal troops to ensure compliance.


1960 -- Four black college students begin sit-ins at lunch counter of a Greensboro, North Carolina, restaurant where black patrons are not served. Congress approves a watered-down voting rights act after a filibuster by Southern senators. 1961 -- Freedom Rides begin from Washington, D.C., into Southern states. 1962 -- President Kennedy sends federal troops to the University of Mississippi to quell riots so that James Meredith, the school's first black student, can attend. The Supreme Court rules that segregation is unconstitutional in all transportation facilities.


…The Department of Defense orders full integration of military reserve units, the National Guard excluded. 1963 -- Civil rights leader Medgar Evers is killed by a sniper's bullet. Race riots prompt modified martial law in Cambridge, Maryland. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivers "I Have a Dream" speech to hundreds of thousands at the March on Washington. Church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama, leaves four young black girls dead.


1964 -- Congress passes Civil Rights Act declaring discrimination based on race illegal after 75-day long filibuster. Three civil rights workers disappear in Mississippi after being stopped for speeding; found buried six weeks later. Riots in Harlem and Philadelphia


1965 -- March from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, to demand protection for voting rights; two civil rights workers slain earlier in the year in Selma. Malcolm X assassinated. Riot in Watts, Los Angeles. New voting rights act signed 1966 -- Edward Brooke, elected first black U.S. senator in 85 years. 1967 -- Riots in Detroit, Newark, New Jersey. Thurgood Marshall first black to be named to the Supreme Court. Carl Stokes (Cleveland) and Richard G. Hatcher (Gary, Indiana) elected first black mayors of major U.S. cities.


1968 -- Martin Luther King Jr. assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee; James Earl Ray later convicted and sentenced to 99 years in prison. Poor People's March on Washington -- planned by King before his death -- goes on. 1973 -- Maynard Jackson (Atlanta), first black elected mayor of a major Southern U.S. city. 1975 --Voting Rights Act extended. 1978 -- Supreme Court rules that medical school admission programs that set aside positions based on race are unconstitutional (Bakke decision). 1979 -- Shoot-out in Greensboro, North Carolina, leaves five anti-Klan protesters dead; 12 Klansmen charged with murder


1983 -- Martin Luther King Jr. federal holiday established. 1988 -- Congress passes Civil Rights Restoration Act over President Reagan's veto. 1989 -- Army Gen. Colin Powell becomes first black to serve as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. 1989 -- L. Douglas Wilder (Virginia) becomes first black elected governor.


1990 -- President Bush vetoes a civil rights bill he says would impose quotas for employers; weaker bill passes muster in 1991. 1991 -- Civil rights museum opens at King assassination site in Memphis. 1994 -- Byron De La Beckwith convicted of 1963 Medgar Evers assassination. 1995 -- Supreme Court rules that federal programs that use race as a categorical classification must have "compelling government interest" to do so. 1996 -- Supreme Court rules consideration of race in creating congressional districts is unconstitutional.

Edgar Nixon: 

Edgar Nixon Edgar Daniel Nixon (July 12, 1899– February 25, 1987) was an American civil rights leader and union organizer, and played an important role in organizing the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Nixon was the head of the Montgomery branch of the Pullman Porters union and president of the local NAACP, as well as the Montgomery Welfare League and the Montgomery Voters League at various times. Nixon had been campaigning for civil rights, particularly voting rights, for years before the bus boycott. He had served as an unelected advocate for Montgomery's black community, interceding for those who asked for his help with white office holders, police and civil servants. He organized a group of 750 men who marched to the Montgomery county courthouse in 1940 to attempt to register to vote. He ran for a seat on the county Democratic executive committee in 1954 and questioned candidates for the Montgomery City Commission on their position on civil rights issues the following year.

T.J. Jemison: 

T.J. Jemison Theodore Jefferson Jemison (born in 1914), better known as T.J. Jemison, was President of the National Baptist Convention from 1982 to 1994. He led a short and partially successful mass boycott of the bus service in Baton Rouge, Louisiana in 1953, a precursor to the Montgomery Bus Boycott launched two years later. He was one of the founders of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957. Jemison came from a family of prominent ministers; he was born in Selma, Alabama, where his father, the Rev. David V. Jemison, pastored the Tabernacle Baptist Church. At the time he moved to Baton Rouge to lead Mt. Zion Baptist Church in 1948, his father was serving as President of the National Baptist Convention.

Significant Events: 

Significant Events The murder of Emmit Till Montgomery Bus Boycott Desegregating Little Rock Sit-ins and freedom rides The Birmingham campaign The March on Washington

Significant groups: 

Significant groups NAACP- National Association for the Advancement of Colored People SCLC- Southern Christian Leadership Conference CORE- Congress of Racial Equality SNCC- Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee Black Power Groups- Black Panthers, Nation of Islam

The Movement: 

The Movement The Civil Rights Movement ushered in major transformations in American life in law, in social relations, in the role of government. The Brown case decision brought an end to legal apartheid in America. The Movement was made up of many activities, between 1955 and 1968 to end discrimination against African-Americans and to end racial segregation everywhere.

The fight is not over: 

The fight is not over The central goal of the civil rights movement was full equality between blacks and whites. This goal I believe is still not fully accomplished. Residential segregation, seen in black ghettos, and white suburbs is still prevalent. Even the segregation in churches, social centers, and private schools also remains routine. Wealth is also largely segregated along racial lines, with the median family income of blacks in 1990 barely three-fifths that of whites, and with blacks three times as likely to be poor. Many civil rights leaders have urged comprehensive government remedies; but political power remains limited with regard to national office holding and access to the circles that make foreign and domestic policy.


Bibliography Dobson, Edwards R., ed. "Civil Rights Movement." Blacks Survive. 8 Oct. 2000. 28 July 2005 <>. Gathens, Clay T., ed. The Movement. New York, New York: Paul Cliff, 1989. 2-42. Stanley, Heith D. "The Civil Rights Movement." We Shall Overcome. 5 Mar. 1998. 28 July 1996 <>.

Thank You : 

Thank You The End

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