The Civil Rights Movement


Executive Order 9981 Signed


President Truman signs the Executive Order 9981, which bans racial segregation in the armed forces. It states, "It is hereby declared to be the policy of the President that there shall be equality of treatment and opportunity for all persons in the armed services without regard to race, color, religion, or national origin."

Brown V. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas


The Supreme Court unanimously agrees to overturn Plessy V. Ferguson and ban racial segregation in schools. This has a massive effect on the United States, especially the South, which was commanded to integrate schools " with all deliberate speed". This case is a landmark for Civil Rights.

President Eisenhower Forces Integration in Little Rock, Arkansas

09/1/1957 - 09/30/1957

Nine black students were prohibited from entering a formerly all white school. It seems that integration in schools as mandated in Brown V. Board of Education may be harder than it seems, however President Eisenhower effectively secures the black student's education by sending in troops.

President Kennedy sends 5,000 Federal Troops to Mississippi


The first black student enrolls at the University of Mississippi, which enrages many students as they commit acts of violence and start riots. President Kennedy quells the chaos with 5,000 troops.

Poll Tax Abolished


The 24th Amendment ends the onerous poll tax.

Civil Rights Act of 1964


President Johnson, who has done the most for civil rights than any other president, signs the Civil Rights act of 1964, which bans all racial and gender discrimination.

Voting Rights Act of 1965


Largely as aided by Bloody Sunday, Congress passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Requirements used to make black voting difficult are banned.

Executive Order 11246 Issued


President Johnson issues an executive order that enforces affirmative action. This affirmative action is aimed for protecting the individual minority in obtaining labor.

Loving v. Virginia


The Supreme Court pronounces interracial marriage legal, and forces states that prohibit such marriage to legalize it.

Civil Rights Act of 1968


This Civil Rights Act bans discrimination in real estate transactions.

Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education


In order to help schools desegregate with "all deliberate speed", the Supreme Court rules using busing as a constitutional means of segregation in public schools.


Emmet Till's Murder

08/1/1955 - 08/30/1955

J. W Milam and Roy Bryant, two white men, kidnap, beat, and kill a 14 year-old African American Emmett Till. They are acquitted by an all-white jury, and later brag about it in an article in Look magazine. African Americans around the country are enraged a drive forward the Civil Rights movement.

Blacks Boycott the Bus

12/1/1955 - 12/26/1956

Rosa Park was arrested for refusing to give up her seat to a white person on a bus. This was the impetus to the bus boycott headed by Rv. Martin Luther King Jr. The boycott had achieved its goal as buses were desegregated about a year later.

Southern Christian Leadership Conference Established

01/1/1957 - 02/28/1957

Martin Luther King is the first president of the SCLC, which advocates civil rights through non-voilent civil disobedience.

Martin Luther KIng said ""We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline"

Student Sit-In at Greensboro, N.C


As a form of Civil Disobedience, likely inspired by Martin Luther King Jr's leadership, 4 black college students sit-in at Woolworth's lunch counter. They are refused service, but remain at the counter nevertheless. Eventually other blacks would follow their example, and sit-ins became a common form of protestation to integrate public facilities. 6 months later, the 4 college students were served food at the same counter.

Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee

03/1/1960 - 03/30/1960

The SNCC is founded to help young blacks in the civil rights movement. Unfortunately Stokely Carmichael perverts the traditional meanings of the committee as it becomes more radical.

Freedom Riders Test the South's Laws on Segregation


Student volunteers take bus trips to the South to discover if the South had truly desegregated. The Freedom Riders find themselves attacked numerous times throughout the tour. The program was sponsored by The Congress of Racial Equality and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee.

Martin Luther King Jr. Writes a Letter from Birmingham Jail


While arrested in Birmingham, Alabama for protesting, he wrote "Letter from Birmingham Jail", which influenced many to commit civil disobedience.

Word is Shocked by Brutality in Bermingham

05/1/1963 - 05/30/1963

As the media televises blacks being hosed down by fire hoses and tackled down by police dogs, the American public (including JFK) is shocked and begin to sympathize with blacks.

Martin Luther King Jr. "[Has] a Dream"


200,000 people March to Washington and assemble at the Lincoln Memorial.

Martin Luther King Jr. delivers his legendary "I have a Dream" speech.

Freedom Summer

06/01/1964 - 09/01/1964

An an effort to register black voters, The Council of Federated Organizations sends out volunteers from multiple civil rights groups to educate blacks. In protestation of all-white Mississippi representatives, the COFO sends delegates to the Democratic National Convention.

Malcom X. is Shot to Death


After converting to a peaceful, orthodox Islam, Malcom X., who had formerly advocated violence and black separation is shot to death.

Bloody Sunday


In order to urge voting rights, blacks march to Montgomery Alabama but meet resistance from a police blockade, who brutally attack them.

Race Riots in Los Angeles

08/11/1965 - 08/17/1965

This was caused by the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Black Panthers Founded


The militant Black Panthers, which use violence to push for black separation.

The "Black Power" Speech


In Seattle Washington, Stokely Carmichael gives a speech encouraging "black power", in which he pushes for "the coming together of black people to fight for their liberation by any means necessary".

Race Riots

07/12/1967 - 07/30/1967

As a result of the recent federal regulation on civil rights and the black separatist movement, race riots occur in Newark and Detroit.

Martin Luther King Jr. Assasinated


In Memphis Tennessee, Martin Luther King Jr. is shot by a racists, this enrages blacks throughout the country.