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Civil Rights Timeline

  • Brown V Board of Education

    Brown V Board of Education
    This is a famous court case where the U.S supreme court ruled that racial segregation of children in public schools is unconstitutional. The people who went against the supreme court, in this case, were Hugo Black, Earl Warren, Felix Frankfurter, William O Douglas, and Stanley Reed. These 5 men stated that segregation in public schools was a violation of the 14th amendment which granted citizenship to all people born or naturalized in the U.S, thus being unconstitutional.
  • White Citizens Council

    White Citizens Council
    After the Brown V Board decision of desegregation of public schools in the south, the white people were really mad about this decision. While they were mad, they formed councils/movements, thus the name, "White Citizens Council" was formed. In these councils, white people came together with their similar beliefs about how segregation should continue in public schools. Their beliefs would spread in advertisements and announced in radio stations, so the whole world could hear and agree with them.
  • Brown V Board of Education II

    Brown V Board of Education II
    A year after the 1st Brown v Board of Education case, which had made racial segregation in public schools in the south illegal, comes another case, a part 2. This second case was brought upon by the many all-white schools in the U.S that had not been following the supreme court decision in May. That's where this second case comes in, it set rules for public schools on HOW to desegregate. The court orders public schools to integrate their schools with "all deliberate speed".
  • The Lynching of Emmett Till

    The Lynching of Emmett Till
    Emmett Till was a 14-year-old boy who lived in Mississipi in 1955. Emmett was accused of flirting with a white woman and was then murdered a couple of days later. He was murdered by the white woman's husband and brother, who beat Emmett to death. The men who beat him up were Roy Bryant and J.W Milam. Carolyn, Roy, and J.W got away with it, no punishments, charges, jail time, and there was no justice for Emmett, ever.
  • Rosa Parks Arrested

    Rosa Parks Arrested
    "The first lady of civil rights" is what many refer to her as. The brave Rosa Parks was a black woman who is known for her courageous act of refusing to move out of a white man's seat on a bus. Back in the 1950s, it was a "rule" and "normal" for white people to sit in the front of the bus, and black people shoved in the back of the bus. After her refusal, she was then arrested and fined. This was the peak of change for black people in the United States. They gained more courage and bravery.
  • The Beginning of the Montgomery Bus Boycott

    The Beginning of the Montgomery Bus Boycott
    The Montgomery Bus Boycott was a type of protest where black citizens would refuse to ride the bus in the city of Montgomery, Alabama. The purpose of this was to protest against segregated seating on buses. This occurred a couple of days after Rosa Park's refusal of giving up her seat. This boycott lasted until December 20th, 1956. This caught the attention of the nation's citizens, who weren't aware of what was going on in the south. Instead of riding the bus, they would just walk everywhere.
  • Martin Luther King House Bombing

    Martin Luther King House Bombing
    On this day, Martin Luther King's house was bombed by a white supremacist. His house was located in Montgomery Alabama. While MLK was speaking at a local church, the man threw an explosive onto his porch. This was an act of revenge because of the success that the Montgomery Bus Boycott had during that time. MLK advised black people to "love our enemies" therefore not retreat to violence or hatred to them.
  • Bombing of Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth

    Bombing of Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth
    Almost a year after Martin Luther King's house was bombed, the KKK bombs Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth's home where he was actually home when it happened. After this, the KKK and white supremacists tried to murder the Reverend. He and his family went through a lot together like the house bombing, numerous death threats, and his wife also getting stabbed after enrolling their kids into all-white schools.
  • SCLC founded

    SCLC founded
    The Southern Christian Leadership Conference was an organization founded by civil rights leaders: Martin Luther King, Ralph Abernathy, Fred Shuttlesworth Bayward Rustlin and Joseph Lowery. The purpose and goals of this organization that were held in black churches were to put together and form marches, boycotts, and many other forms of nonviolent protesting. They were protesting against segregation in cities and schools and that churches should be politically involved.
  • Eisenhower Sends In Federal Troops

    Eisenhower Sends In Federal Troops
    On September 23rd, 1957, President Dwight Eisenhower sent in federal troops to Little Rock Arkansas. The reason behind why he did this was because of the "Little Rock Nine", 9 black students attending the Little Rock Central Highschool. They received lots of hate and were prevented from even entering high school. This went against the Brown V. Board of Education case that stated segregation in public schools was illegal. Because of this Eisenhower sent troops in so they could go to the school.
  • The Greensboro Sit Ins

    The Greensboro Sit Ins
    In a city in North Carolina called Greenboro during the 60s, a new type of nonviolent protesting formed. Sit-ins. This was where black students would sit at the counters in local diners. They wouldn't be served but would sit there and refuse to leave their spots. This lasted until July 25th, 1960. These were considered successful protests because a couple of years later, segregation of public places was illegal. They were organized by Ezell Blair, Franklin Mcain, Joseph Mcneil, & David Richmond.
  • SNCC formed

    SNCC formed
    The Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee was an organization that was created by Ella Baker, Diane Nash, Julian Bond, Bernard Lafayette, and Charles Sherrod. This organization's purpose was to lead non-violent campaigns and protests against segregation. They wanted to give young African Americans a stronger voice in the world and show great leadership in the south. It was founded in North Carolina at Shaw University where the founders attended college at.
  • Freedom Rides begin

    Freedom Rides begin
    Freedom rides were a type of civil rights protest, where African Americans, called "Freedom Riders" would ride interstate buses through the Southern states. The goal of this non-violent protest was to stop the segregation of public interstate transportation. On May 4th, 1961 was when the first freedom ride occurred. 7 African Americans wanted to test the Boynton V. Virginia ruling of segregation on interstates buses unconstitutional, and left from Washington D.C to the southern U.S states.
  • White Mobs Attack Federal Marshals in Montgomery

    White Mobs Attack Federal Marshals in Montgomery
    On May 20th of 1961, in Montgomery Alabama, a mob of white people attacked a bus that was full of freedom riders traveling through the south. They were attacked right after they got off the bus at the downtown Greyhound station. There was no protection for the freedom riders. Because of the severity and anger that fulfilled the angry mob, U.S attorney Robert F Kennedy had to send in federal marshals to try and settle the situation down.
  • Albany Gerogia "Failure"

    Albany Gerogia "Failure"
    The Albany movement was a civil rights movement formed on November 17th, 1961 in Albany Georgia. It was formed to test segregation in the city of Albany. It was considered a failure by many because it was unsuccessful at trying to end segregation in public areas. It lasted from 1961-1962. The founders were the SNCC, NAACP, and William G. Anderson. Martin Luther King eventually joined, but on August 10th, 1962, he was arrested and had to leave this, no longer being involved in the movement.
  • Bailey v Patterson

    Bailey v Patterson
    Bailey v Patterson was a civil rights case argued on December 18th, 1961. This case was between Joe T. Patterson, an attorney general of Mississippi and Samuel Bailey who was a civil rights leader in Mississipi. Sam was one of the 3 men who had filed a lawsuit against the state of Mississipi regarding segregation on public transportations. Sam won the case because of the right to unsegregated public places and transportation. This was a success for the civil rights activists.
  • MLK Goes To Birmingham Jail

    MLK Goes To Birmingham Jail
    On January 26th, 1963, Martin Luther King was arrested and incarcerated due to protesting in Birmingham Alabama as well as a lot of his supporters and other protesters. MLK and Ralph Abernathy who was also a civil rights leader led a civil rights march through Birmingham. MLK was in prison for 11 days because he was demonstrating without a permit. While he was in prison, MLK wrote his famous letter about African American Resistance.
  • Kennedy Sends In Federal Troops

    Kennedy Sends In Federal Troops
    After the Alabama governor George Wallace accepts the black students to enroll in the University of Alabama, this caused a lot of irritation and controversy for the citizens of Alabama. On June 10th, JFK sent federal troops to ensure the safety of the black students and to also abide by the Brown V. Board of education decision of desegregation in public schools.
  • Equal Pay Act

    Equal Pay Act
    The Equal Pay Act was signed on June 10th, 1963. It was signed by John F. Kennedy, who was the president at the time. The Equal Pay Act ensured that men and women in the workplace that have similar work jobs get paid the same. It is illegal for them to have different salaries for having different jobs because of gender. It was passed to reduce gender discrimination in the U.S and would prevent employers from paying men a higher salary.
  • Assassination of Medgar Evers

    Assassination of Medgar Evers
    Medgar Evers was an African American civil rights leader as well as being the secretary for the NAACP. A white supremacist named Byron De La Beckwith shot Medgar at Medgar's house in Jackson Mississipi. There were many trials for Byron, but all had an all-white jury which was unfair and many blacks protested against. 30 years later, the case reopened and Byron was guilty of Medgar's murder and was incarcerated for life.
  • March on Washington, "I have a dream"

    March on Washington, "I have a dream"
    The March on Washington was a march that 250,000 people attended, and is known for being one of the largest demonstrations the nation's had. The goal was to bring attention and spread awareness of racial inequality and racism. Demonstrators and leaders from all around the nation came to support each other. This is also where MLK gave his famous, "I have a dream" speech that called for an end to racism. The impact of this march had insisted JFK into signing more civil rights bills.
  • Bombing of a Church in Birmingham

    Bombing of a Church in Birmingham
    On September 15th, 1963 in Birmingham Alabama, on 16th street at the Baptist Church, a bomb had exploded. At this church, all black people had attended, including civil rights leaders. The bomb had gone off before a Sunday service. The suspects for the bombers were Thomas Blanton, Robert Chambliss, Bobby Frank Cherry, and Herman Cash. After the bombing, sadly four black schoolgirls were killed; Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson, and Carol Denise McNair.
  • Assassination of John F. Kennedy

    Assassination of John F. Kennedy
    John F. Kennedy was the 35th president of the United States. On November 22nd, 1963 while he was traveling through Dallas Texas in a car with his wife, Jackie Kennedy. They were driving through a parade route in an open-top convertible. A man named Lee Harvey Oswald shot JFK from a high-level building while JFK's convertible was passing by. After this, Lyndon B. Johnson was sworn in as president of the United States. Harvey was then shot by a U.S citizen who shot him because of JFK's death.
  • The 24th Amendment

    The 24th Amendment
    On January 23rd, 1964, the 24th Amendment of the United States was signed by the president at the time Lyndon B. Johnson. The 24th amendment prohibited any poll tax in elections for federal officials. This means that before the 24th amendment, citizens had to pay to vote in elections called a poll tax. This was passed because, at the time, five southern states still had a poll tax that affected African American voters because it practiced Jim Crow Laws, going against African Americans.
  • Freedom Summer

    Freedom Summer
    Freedom Summer was a project that tried to get as many African Americans to vote as possible. Their goal was to empower African Americans in Mississipi to participate and vote in local, national and state elections, that lasted 10 weeks. Freedom Summer was created by numerous civil rights organizations like CORE and the SNCC. It wasn't fully a peaceful project, as many volunteers had to put up with white supremacists and members of the KKK. It helped bring awareness to voter discrimination.
  • Killing of Goodman, Chaney, Schwerner

     Killing of Goodman, Chaney, Schwerner
    James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Micheal Schwerner were civil rights workers who all worked for CORE. One day, they went missing after being in jail for being accused of speeding. An FBI officer took on the case to investigate the abduction of the 3. After 6 weeks, someone sent the FBI a location of where the bodies were located and later identified. After the trial, there were seven defendants that were guilty of the three men's murderer.
  • The Civil Right Act of 1964

    The Civil Right Act of 1964
    The civil right acts of 1964 was an act passed to end racial segregation. The act terminated discrimination based on race, color, religion, or gender. Some events that led to the Civil Rights Act to be passed were all the boycotts, sit-ins, bombings, shootings, and much segregation. The act led to more opportunities for African-Americans such as housing and jobs. It also provided black families with low income and well as women of color, to more resources such as grocery stores and diners.
  • Assassination of Malcom X

    Assassination of Malcom X
    On February 21st, 1965 Malcolm X was murdered by a group of rival black Muslims. Before he was shot, he taught the teachings of Elijah Muhammed, whose followers were called Black Muslims. Malcolm was giving a speech while on the stage in New York at the Audubon Ballroom while giving his speech. Many think that he might have been killed by Muslims, but other people think that members of the Ku Klux Klan could have been responsible for this.
  • Selma to Montgomery March

    Selma to Montgomery March
    These were a type of civil rights protests that took place in Alabama from March 7th-March 21st 1965. Protestors would march on the 54-mile route that was from Selma to Montgomery. It definitely wan' st a peaceful protest because when they arrived in Montgomery they clashed with angry white mobs and supremacists. The impact that this march had was that it brought awareness to the struggles that African Americans had while voting and racial discrimination.
  • The Voting Right Acts of 1965

    The Voting Right Acts of 1965
    The voting rights act of 1965 was an act that was passed by President Lyndon B Johnson on August, 6th 1965. The act stated that there would be no racial discrimination in voting, meaning everyone can vote no matter color or race. It gave African Americans the freedom to use their 15th amendment right, which was that anyone can vote no matter your race or color. This helped African Americans to use their vote and their voice to vote for who they believed in.
  • Black Panthers Formed

    Black Panthers Formed
    The Black Panthers was a political organization that ideologized black nationalism, socialism, and self-defense. The Black Panther Party's goals were to end police abuse and murders of black people. They wanted equal freedom for black people wether they got arrested, incarcerated, in any level of authority. The Black Panther Party started in Oakland California by Huey P. Newton, Bobby Seale, and Elbert Howard.
  • Loving V Virginia

    Loving V Virginia
    Loving V Virginia was a U.S supreme court case that started in Virginia when a married couple, a white man and a black woman, were charged with violating Virginia's antimiscegenation law. The antimiscegenation law was a law that forbids inter-racial marriages. They were put on trial and were decided that they were guilty. After the trial, they were sentenced to a year in jail. The aftermath of this case was that it now terminate the rule against interracial marriages.
  • Minneapolis Riots

    Minneapolis Riots
    On July 19th, 1967, in North Minneapolis a crowd of African Americans moved from their spot towards Plymouth Avenue, where they were violently protesting. They were protesting racial discrimination by police. After this, a series of riots broke out. Vandalisms, robberies, fights, fires, and more violence. These riots lasted for 3 days. The governor of Minnesota at the time, Harold LeVander, sent Minnesota National Guard troops to watch the area while tensions died down
  • Detroit Riots

    Detroit Riots
    Starting on July 23rd of 1967 in Detroit Michigan, police tried to close down an underground bar. Bottles were thrown, fires were started and the police fled when the riot broke out. Then, the governor of Michigan, George Romney was asked to send in the state police. More than 7,000 people were arrested and 43 people died. These were known as one of the most deadliest riots that had taken place in the nation. The aftermath was $100 million that was damaged or stolen.
  • Assassination of MLK

    Assassination of MLK
    Martin Luther King, one of the most famous civil rights leaders in the world, was assassinated on April 4th, 1968 by a man named James Earl Ray. MLK was on the balcony of this motel in Memphis Tennesee. Ray was then sentenced to a 99-year jail sentence for murdering him and eventually died in prison. After MLK died, this caused a series of civil rights riots. Riots so bad that in the city of Wilmington, Delaware, armed guards had to watch and stay around in the area, to break up any violence.
  • Assassination of Robert Kennedy

    Assassination of Robert Kennedy
    Robert Kennedy was the United States Attorney General from 1961-1964 as well as U.S senator from 1965-1968. Robert was John F. Kennedy's younger brother. On June 6th, 1968 Robert was shot by a man named Sirhan at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles. Before Kennedy was shot, he won the California presidential primary and was known for his loyalty to the civil rights ideal. Sirhan was originally going to be death sentenced, but California had revoked, thus spending the rest of his life in prison.