Protests Timeline (1954-1965)

  • Brown v. Board of Education

    Brown v. Board of Education
    This was a landmark decision of the United States Supreme Court that declared state laws establishing separate public schools for black and white students unconstitutional. The decision overturned the Plessy v. Ferguson decision of 1896 which allowed state-sponsored segregation.
  • Montogermy Bus Boycott

    Montogermy Bus Boycott
    The Montgomery Bus Boycott was a political and social protest campaign that started in 1955 in Montgomery, Alabama, USA, intended to oppose the city's policy of racial segregation on its public transit system. Many historically significant figures of the civil rights movement were involved in the boycott, including Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., Ralph Abernathy, and others. The boycott resulted in a crippling financial deficit for the Montgomery public transit system.
  • Woolworth sit in

    Woolworth sit in
    On this day four African American college students sat down at a lunch counter at Woolworth’s in Greensboro, North Carolina, and politely asked for service. Their request was refused. When asked to leave, they remained in their seats. Their passive resistance and peaceful sit-down demand helped ignite a youth-led movement to challenge racial inequality throughout the South.
  • Freedom Rides

    Freedom Rides
    The first Freedom Ride took place on May 4, 1961 when seven blacks and six whites left Washington, D.C., on two public buses bound for the Deep South. They intended to test the Supreme Court's ruling in Boynton v. Virginia (1960), which declared segregation in interstate bus and rail stations unconstitutional.
  • Birminghams Children's March

    Birminghams Children's March
    The Children's Crusade was the name bestowed upon a march by hundreds of school students in Birmingham, Alabama, on May 2, May 3, and May 4, 1963, during the American Civil Rights Movement's Birmingham Campaign. Initiated and organized by Rev. James Bevel, the purpose of the march was to walk downtown to talk to the mayor about segregation in their city. Many children left their schools in order to be arrested, set free, and then to get arrested again the next day.
  • March on Washington

    March on Washington
    This march was a large political rally in support of civil and economic rights for African Americans that took place in Washington, D.C.. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his historic "I Have a Dream" speech advocating racial harmony at the Lincoln Memorial during the march.
  • Selma to Montogermy March

    Selma to Montogermy March
    About six hundred people began a fifty-four mile march from Selma, Alabama to the state capitol in Montgomery. They were demonstrating for African American voting rights and to commemorate the death of Jimmie Lee Jackson, shot three weeks earlier by an state trooper while trying to protect his mother at a civil rights demonstration. On the outskirts of Selma, after they crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge, the marchers, in plain sight of photographers and journalists, were brutally assaulted by hea