Pres. Truman signs Executive Order 9981
States that there should be equal opportunities and and treatment for everyone in the armed services, no matter their race, color, religion, or national origin.
Brown v Board of Education
May 17, 1954
Supreme court case that unanimously agreed that segregation in public schools was unconstitutional.
Allows for large-scale desegregation
Overturns the "separate but equal" ruling in the Plessy v Ferguson case
Murder of Emmett Till
Two white males beat Till and shot him in the back of his head afterwards. They disposed his body in a river with a cotton gin weighing him down.
Montgomery Bus Boycotts
Started with Rosa Parks who refused to get out of her seat for a white male. Took place in Montgomery, AL.
Rosa Parks' action led many others to boycott buses so African Americans would not have to suffer segregation on buses.
Little Rock Nine Crisis
Nine black students are blocked from entering a desegregated all-white school. Attack on the students were led by Gov Orval Faubus.
Pres Eisenhower sent federal troops to intervene and escort the students around the campus and protect them from crazy parents.
Student Lunch Counter Sit-Ins (Greensboro)
February 1, 1960
Four African American college students conducted non-violent sit-ins at a segregated counter in a restaurant after they were refused service.
Prompted other students to join in and get the segregation at the counter repealed.
Formation of SNCC
SNCC = Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee
Began with the peaceful sit-ins of the 50's. Under Stokely Carmichael it took a "non-Nonviolent" stance.
Carmichael spoke of Black Power, a catch-all phrase calling for blacks to carry out their political and economic power.
Many blacks interpreted "Black Power" as a separatist movement. Emphasized uniqueness such as "Afro" hair, clothes, names for children, and African studies in colleges.
May 4, 1961
Freedom riders (usually young white northerners) rode buses through the South to draw attention to segregation. Some Southerners became violent against the buses
James Meredith & Univ of Mississippi
October 1, 1962
Meredith becomes the first black student enrolled in the Uni of Mississippi, but white students block him from classes.
Violence and riots from this cause Pres Kennedy to send in federal troops so Meredith could go to class.
Crisis/Violence in Birmingham
May 1963 - September 15, 1963
Civil rights protesters were hosed down and attacked by police dogs who were purposely turned against them. Images of this were published/televised and was instrumental for gaining support for Civil Rights around the world.
Four young black girls at Sunday school were killed by a bomb that went off in/near the church. Led to more riots.
Murder of Medgar Evers
June 12, 1963
Black civil rights worker who was shot and killed in front of his house by a white supremacist right after JFK's speech on supporting civil rights.
March on Washington
August 28, 1963
Led my MLK, over 200,000 gathered in Washington D.C. at the Lincoln Memorial where MLK gave his "I Have a Dream" speech.
President Kennedy Assassination
November 22, 1963
Kennedy was shot and killed in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963 by Lee Harvey Oswald.
Campaign started to try to register as many black voters as possible. Primarily Northern whites came down during the Freedom Summer to help register.
Civil Rights Act of 1964
July 2, 1964
Pres signs Civil Right Act that prohibits discriminations of all kinds and provides federal government with the power to enforce desegregation.
Malcolm X, Black Nationalism, & Assassination
1965 - February 21, 1965
Malcolm X - against non-violent protesting. Was influenced by black militants in the Nation of Islam. Founded the Organization of Afro-American Unity.
Black Nationalism - advocated economic self-sufficiency, racial pride for African Americans, and black separatism.
Assassination - Malcolm was killed by Nation of Islam gunmen.
"Bloody Sunday" & Selma to Montgomery Marches
Martin Luther King, Jr. set up a voter registration drive in Selma, Alabama. Wanted march from Selma to Montgomery.
State police used tear gas, and whips. Two people died in the chaos. This is when the Voting Rights Act gained steam and passed.
Voting Rights Act of 1965
August 10, 1965
Made it easier for Southern Blacks to vote. The tricky ways of the South to discourage blacks (literacy tests, poll taxes, etc.) were made illegal through this too.
August 11, 1965 - August 17, 1965
Took place in Los Angeles. Resulted in 34 deaths, 1,032 injuries, 3,438 arrests, and over $40 million in property damage.
Was not a racial riot per-say, but a class riot. Took place in the ghetto.
Black Panthers formation & Rallies
Founded by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale in Oakland, CA.
Went around armed with powerful weapons.
Believed in Black Power and Black Nationalism.
April 4, 1968
MLK (age 39) was shot as he stood in the balcony outside his hotel room. Takes place in Memphis.
Escaped convict and committed racist is convicted of the crime, his name was Hanes Earl Ray.
Poor People's March on Washington
Participants set up a 3000-person tent city on the Washington Mall, where they stayed for six weeks.
Tried to gain economic justice for poor people in the US.
Robert Kennedy Assassination
June 6, 1968
Robert was running for the Democratic nominee to become President. Was shot and killed in Los Angeles after winning the California vote.