The Civil Rights Movement

  • Discrimintion banned in Defense Industries

    Industry workers wanted better rights so during World War II, President Roosevelt banned discrimination in defense industries. This got more workers and was a step towards equality. However it upset certain workers and caused racial tension.
  • Jackie Robinson

    Jackie Robinson
    Jackie Robinson was the first African American to play major league baseball. He played for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Even though he faced many threats, he paved the way for many others to integrate sports.
  • Desegregating the Military

    Desegregating the Military
    President Truman desegregated the military making it the most integrated industry in the US. It did cause anger among some of the white soldiers.
  • Brown v. Board of Education

    Linda Brown went to a segregated school district in Topeka, Kansas. She passed a white school every day on her way to school so she told her father that the schools were “unconstitutional.” Linda’s parents tired to enroll her but the school denied her application because she was black. The NAACP filed a lawsuit against the Board of Education on behalf of the Browns and other black families. They argued against the separate but equal ruling the Plessy v. Ferguson case. The Supreme Court ru
  • Rosa Parks sparks civil rights movement.

    Rosa Parks sparks civil rights movement.
    Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat in the black section to a white man on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama. She was arrested for breaking the law that she was required to move. Even though she faced prison, Rosa Parks’ actions set the Montgomery Bus Boycott in motion.
  • Montgomery Bus Boycott

    Montgomery Bus Boycott
    1955-1956 – After Rosa Parks was arrested, a protest was organized called the Montgomery Bus Boycott. African Americans would not ride the bus for almost a year in a push for equality. The bus system suffered greatly from the loss of customers but soon the buses were desegregated.
  • King's first speech.

    King's first speech.
    Martin Luther King Jr. gave the first of his speeches during the bus boycott about nonviolence to the civil rights activists. He immediately became the leader and the face of the Civil Rights Movement.
  • Law passed, ending the Mongomery Bus Boycott.

    The Montgomery city law of segregated buses was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. This MIA ended the boycott and African Americans began to ride the buses again, sitting where they wanted too.
  • Opposition of the Brown ruling.

    About 100 southern members of Congress pledged to oppose the “Brown ruling through all lawful means". This caused much tension between the officials and the Supreme Court.
  • Prayer Protest in D.C.

    The SCLC organized prayer protest in D.C. which helped to convince congress to pass rights legislation. Sadly, discrimination and segregation remained widespread.
  • Little Rock Nine

    Little Rock Nine
    Nine African American students started going to Central High School but were mobbed by white people to go away. President Eisenhower sent federal troops to protect the students through and around the schools grounds. Despite the mobs, threats and harassment, the Little Rock Nine beat segregation laws.
  • The Civil Rights Act of 1957

    The Civil rights Act of 1957 was a small victory for civil rights. The law established the U.S. Civil Rights Commission which investigated violation of civil rights. It also protected African Americans voting rights. It was the first civil rights bill passed by Congress since the Reconstruction but it didn’t have a lot of power.
  • Formation of the SNCC.

    On Easter weekend, 175 students from 30 states went to Shaw University in Raleigh, NC to listen to James Lawson deliver a speech. This formed the SNCC.
  • Sit-ins are started.

    Sit-ins are started.
    Four African American college students went to Woolworths lunch counter in Greensboro, NC. When the white waitress didn’t serve them, they sat down and stayed till closing time. They inspired protesters to sit-in. Some protesters were injured.
  • Freedom Ride

    Spring; African Americans boarded two buses from Washington DC to New Orleans and disobeyed white codes. They used white bathrooms and sat in the front. White mobs firebombed one of the buses while the second one attached in Birmingham. President Kennedy got involved once pictures of the events got to the news. The Federal Transportation Commission issued desegregation of interstate transportation.
  • Desegregation of the University of Mississippi

    Desegregation of the University of Mississippi
    James Meredith came to Campus with federal marshals. People were there rioting against his arrival. President Kennedy had to address the nation about not disobeying his laws. Because of this, Medgar Evers was assassinated, people were hurt in the riots and there was a standoff between local governments and the federal governments. James Meredith won a federal court case that ordered the University of Mississippi to desegregate. It desegregated college school but upset the local government.
  • King is arrested during Birmingham protests.

    SCLC and King started protest marches and sit-ins in Birmingham, Alabama, which has a reputation of being the most segregated city in the South. The city officials prohibited the protesting. This day, King joined the protests and knew he would be arrested. From jail he wrote a letter of why he is tired of hearing the word “wait”. Protesters had police-dogs and fire hoses used on them and King was then arrested. This caused many Americans to call for the President to act.
  • President Kennedy's televised address.

    President Kennedy gave an address on TV declaring that the U.S. had to keep its promise to give all Americans “equal rights and equal opportunities.” People pushed for passing a bill on civil rights legislation which was helped by Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, the President’s brother, although there were people who disagreed with passing any bills.
  • The March on Washington

    The March on Washington
    Major civil rights groups (NAACP, SCLC, AND SNCC) where brought together in Washington D.C. to protest, putting pressure on Congress to pass the new civil rights bill. The protest remained peaceful and Martin Luther King, Jr. made his “I have a Dream” speech. Although the civil rights groups wanted the protest to be more militant, the public thought it had been “a magical moment in American history.”
  • Bombing at SCLC headquarters.

    Three weeks after the March on Washington, there was a bombing at the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church. This had been the SCLC’s headquarters. Four young African American girls died in the bombing.
  • President Kennedy assassinated.

    President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. The Vice President, Lyndon B. Johnson, took over a s president.
  • Freedom Summer

    Freedom Summer
    The Freedom Summer was organized by the SNCC to push voting rights for African Americans and help them register to vote. Three civil rights workers were murdered but it did not discourage the other 1000 white and black volunteer protesters. This event encouraged the MFDP, a Democratic black political party to push to be represented. This event did have draw backs and led to violence at some points.
  • The Civil Rights Act of 1964

    Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed. This banned segregation in public places and outlawed discrimination in employment. This new law angered some people.
  • Voting Rights Act

    The Voting Rights Act was passed banning literacy tests and empowering the federal government to oversee voting registration and elections in states that had discrimination against minorities. This was a large step for the civil rights movement, although some people did not agree with the law.
  • Malcolm X killed.

    Malcolm X, who had been minister of the Nation of Islam but had formed his own organization, returned from a pilgrimage to Mecca and was shot and killed. Three members of the Nation of Islam were convicted.
  • Johnson shows his support.

    President Johnson televised a speech about having a strong federal voting rights law which showed his support in the civil rights movement but there were many people who disagreed.
  • Bloody Sunday

    The Bloody Sunday took place at Edmond Pettus Bridge. State troopers attacked the civil rights protesters with tear gas, clubs, and ropes. It may have drawn attention to the push for African Americans gaining their rights but it was very violent and many people were hurt. Martin Luther King Jr. was also involved with the protesters.
  • First use of the term "Black Power"

    Stokely Carmichael first used the term “black power”. It meant to use their political power to gain their rights. Groups used this as a saying but whites feared it as a symbol word of black violence.
  • Fair Housing Act

    Thurgood Marshall became the first African American Supreme Court Justice. Also, after King’s death, Fair Housing Act was passed by Congress. It banned discrimination in housing. This happening would make some white people angry, but the Act was passed and there was an African American in the Supreme Court.
  • King's Assassination

    King's Assassination
    King addressed his followers about the threats made about his life. The next day, King was shot by James Earl Ray with a rifle and died in the hospital at the age of 39. It started riots in cities but his legacy still lives on.
  • Increase of African American voters.

    Increase of African American voters.
    The percentage of African Americans registered to vote had increased from 7 percent to 70 percent. There were more African American voters but there were still white people angry about the new voters.