Civil Rights Movement

By acm777
  • Emancipation Proclamation Issued

    Emancipation Proclamation Issued
    The Emancipation Proclamation, issued in 1863, is considered the earliest event in the Civil Rights Movement. Delivered after the battle of Antietam during the American Civil War, in which the Union pushed back a Confederate invasion of Maryland, declared that all slaves in areas of open rebellion (AKA the Confederacy) were free. While it had no DIRECT impact, it seemed to hint at better things to come.
  • Thirteenth Amendment Ratified

    Thirteenth Amendment Ratified
    The 13th Amendment, along with the 14th and 15th, are known as the "Reconstruction Amendments". Ratified after the Confederate surrender and occupation to and by the Union, this amendment officially abolished slavery in the US, and unlike the Emancipation Proclamation, had actual effects. Obviously, abolishing slavery was a big move for civil rights... but would the south follow it? (The answer: No.)
  • Fourteenth Amendment Ratified

    Fourteenth Amendment Ratified
    The 14th Amendment, along with the 13th and 15th, are known as the "Reconstruction Amendments". The 14th Amendment defined US citizenship as anyone born in or naturalised in the US. This amendment was adopted in part due to the former Confederacy establishing what were known as "black codes", laws the restricted the rights of African-Americans. This would be the amendment Plessy would invoke in the case of Plessy v. Ferguson.
  • Fifteenth Amendment Ratified

    Fifteenth Amendment Ratified
    The 15th amendment, along with the 13th and 14th, are known as the "Reconstruction Amendments". The 15th Amendment officially banned denying a person the right to vote based on any previous conditions of servitude (such as slavery). While this was supposed to prevent the south from banning African-Americans fom voting, this had the flaw of not preventing other measures such as the poll tax and literacy tests; something that would persist into the 20th century.
  • Plessy v Ferguson

    Plessy v Ferguson
    Homer Plessy, who was 1/8th black (and thus considered black under Jim Crow law), intentionally broke the Louisiana Separate Car Act, requiring separate cars for blacks and whites. Plessy claimed that doing so violated his 14th amendment rights. This case eventually reached the US Supreme Court, which ruled that "separate but equal" facilities for blacks and whites were constitutional. This would be the way of life in the south for nearly a century.
  • Brown v. Board of Education

    Brown v. Board of Education
    Actually five cases across the nation rolled into one, the court chose to do this to show that school segregation was not exclusively southern. Reverend Oliver Brown of Topeka, Kansas, attempted to enroll his daughter Linda in an all-white school. After being refused, he sued and brought the case (and four others) to the US Supreme Court after being refused by district courts. It would take nearly two years for the Supreme Court to issue its historic ruling: School segregation on basis of race
  • Brown v. Board of Education (2)

    Brown v. Board of Education (2)
    was unconstituional. While several states (mostly in the south) would continue to resist, this ruling overturned Plessy v. Ferguson and signaled the start of integration.
  • Murder of Emmett Till

    Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black boy from Chicago, Illinois, was murdered while visiting relatives in Mississipii for whistling at a white woman. The murder trial was a serious case of injustice; Till's murderers, two white men, were found innocent by a jury of all white males, and months later, protected by the double jeopardy clause, confessed to killing Till. Photos of Till's body would be published in magazines and shock the nation; this is considered the start of the Civil Rights Movement.
  • Montgomery Bus Boycott

    Montgomery Bus Boycott
    The arrest of Rosa Parks, a black woman, for refusing to give up her seat to a white man, sparked a bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama. This sparked a mass boycott of the buses by the black population of the city, with some whites joining in. Eventually, in the case of Browder v Gayle, bus segregation was ruled unconstitutional; yet another move towards integration.
  • Greensboro Sit-Ins

    Greensboro Sit-Ins
    Four NC, black college students ordered food at a Woolworth's and refused to leave the counter, challenging rules requiring them to leave. Over the following days, more and more people would join the sit-ins. It would attract media attention and spread to other southern cities. Economic pressure would force Woolworth's to desegregate, and sit-ins would become a popular form of protest throughout the Civil Rights Movement.
  • Freedom Rides

    Freedom Rides
    Mixed-race groups rode integrated buses leaving from Washington DC with the intent to arrive in New Orleans. While encounteirng only minor violence at first, in Birmingham, Alabama, a massive mob greeted the riders with violence, and later on a group of KKK would also attack the riders. In spite of this, they continued their journey. The driver would later abandon the riders...
  • Freedom Rides (2)

    Freedom Rides (2)
    When a new driver was forcibly chosen, mob violence once again greeted the riders in Montgomery, Alabama. The victims included a federal official. More freedom riders continued, starting over from DC. They were prepared; however, neither the original nor new riders every truly reached their destination; a blow to integration.
  • March on Washington (1963)

    March on Washington (1963)
    Credited with helping to pass the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and Civil Rights Act of 1964, this was the larges poltitical rally in US History. Marchers arrived via buses, trains, airplanes and cars, all packed to the brim. The marchers rallied around the Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial, marchers both black and white. This event, late into the movement, is remembered for the "I Have A Dream" speech by Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

    Passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
    This is the climax of the Civil Rights Movement, and a landmark piece of legislature. This act was signed into law by Lyndon B. Johnson. Initially a John F. Kennedy bill, he proposed a similiar bill, but was assassinated before a bill could be passed into law. This new bill, however, went beyond just African-Americans; it also banned discrimination based on gender. The two major forms of discrimination had been taken down by one bill.
  • Passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965

    Passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965
    Considered the end of the Civil Rights Movement, this act was another bill passed by Lyndon B. Johnson. The Voting Rights Act outlawed practiced used to disenfranchise African-Americans, such as the poll tax and literacy tests. The bill was created to support the 14th and 15th amendments after white violence during the Selma marches. Today, is it renewed every few years, most recently for 25 years in 2006.