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African American Rights

  • Abolish Slavery

  • Civil Rights Act overturned

    Civil Rights Act grants citizenship to the freedmen, but is overturned in court.
  • Equality Under The Law

    establish equality under the law for African-Americans
  • 14th Amendment

    14th Amendment ratified, granting equal citizenship and rights under the law, regardless of race or color
  • Suffrage for African Americans

    established suffrage for former slaves, and all African-Americans
  • End Reconstruction

    The contested presidential election of 1876 results in a deal in which Union troops are removed from the South, thus ending Reconstruction; enforcement of the "Civil War Amendments" comes to an end. By 1890 in the South, de jure segregation is legally-enforced in schools, hotels, buses, trains, train stations, restrooms, restaurants, water fountains. Virtually every public and private facility — is segregated. In the North, de facto segregation (segregation in fact) means that in practice, black
  • Plessy v. Ferguson

    Plessy v. Ferguson ruled that "separate, but equal" facilities do not violate the 14th Amendment; segregation is therefore considered constitutional.
  • NAACP is formed

    The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is formed by W.E.B. DuBois and a group of white and black citizens to fight for the political equality of all races.
  • The Great Migration

    “The Great Migration” begins, which continues through the 1960s, originally a response to demands for additional labor during wartime. The north begins to experience de facto racial segregation, race riots.
  • Marcus Garvey founds UNIA

    Marcus Garvey founds the Universal Negro Improvement Association, and its Black Star shipping line. Garvey promotes pride in African heritage, and black nationalism: a very different approach to black civil rights in America.
  • FDR Establishes the "BlackCabinet"

    FDR establishes a group of African-American advisors, known as the “black cabinet.” New Deal programs provide jobs and assistance to blacks as well as whites.
  • March on Washington

    A. Phillip Randolph leads the March on Washington Movement, urging equal opportunity legislation in federally-contracted defense industries. Executive Order 8802.
  • Desegregation of the Armed Forces

    President Truman orders the desegregation of the Armed Forces, against his generals’ wishes.
  • Brown v. Board of Education

    Brown v. Board of Education: "separate is inherently unequal." Emmet Till tortured and killed in Mississippi, creating nationwide shock at white Southern hostility and violence upon blacks.
  • Rosa Parks Bus Boycott

    Rosa Parks, NAACP; Montgomery Bus boycott, Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Montgomery Bus Boycott a success

    Montgomery Bus Boycott a success; city bus system desegregated; African-American bus drivers hired. The Supreme Court rules segregation in public transportation is unconstitutional.
  • Little Rock Nine

    Little Rock Nine at Little Rock Central High. President Eisenhower sends U.S. Army to desegregate Little Rock, Arkansas's Central High School; the "Little Rock Nine" are allowed to attend. Congress passes the weak Civil Rights Act of 1957, but it has little impact on voting rights.
  • Lunch Counter Sit Ins

    Lunch Counter Sit-ins, Nashville TN. Led by college students in the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC, pronounced “snick”). Adults turned to boycott Nashville stores for employment. Achieved integration in the city.
  • Freedom Rides

    Freedom Rides, Congress Of Racial Equality(CORE) led an integrated civil disobedience bus tour through the South, led to violence, firebombs, beatings, all nationally televised. Led to federal intervention by JFK and RFK as attorney general.
  • KKK bomb kills four black schoolgirls in a Birmingham, Alabama Church

    KKK bomb kills four black schoolgirls in a Birmingham, Alabama church. Birmingham Anti-Segregation Campaign. Police Chief Bull Connor's violent retaliation against peaceful protestors results in riots. Riots spread to other U.S. cities north and south. MLK, Jr. arrested: "Letter From Birmingham Jail."
  • March On Washington

    August: March on Washington, more than 200,000 blacks and whites demonstrate, King gives "I have a dream" speech.
  • Medgar Evers, NAACP officer, shot to death

    June: Medgar Evers, NAACP officer, shot to death in Mississippi by unknown gunman
  • Freedom Summer

    Freedom Summer Massive voter registration drive in Mississippi, organized and staffed by white and black college students, many from the North. Three civil rights workers, two white and from the north are murdered by the KKK.
  • Civil Rights Act of 1964

    Civil Rights Act of 1964. These murders stir awareness and condemnation by much of the nation, including President Johnson, and leads directly to his successful initiation and push for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which Congress passes. The Act outlaws job discrimination, and all forms of segregation.
  • End of Poll Taxes

    24th Amendment does away with poll taxes; “war on poverty” declared by President Johnson’s "Great Society" Program launched. LBJ declares a "war on poverty." Economic Opportunity Act, Medicare/Medicaid, school aid, HUD,
  • Voting Rights Act eliminates literacy tests

    Voting Rights Act eliminates literacy tests