Civil Rights Milestones

By: Connor Savard

Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka Decision

Supreme court reverses Plessey by stating that separate schools by nature are unequal. Schools are ordered to desegregate with all deliberate speed. May 17, 1954


Little Rock Central High School

The Little Rock school board votes to integrate schools. National guard troops prevent black children from attending school. 1000 federal paratroopers are needed to escort black students to preserve peace. Governor Faubus combated this by closing schools that year. Fall of 1957

Montgomery Bus Boycott

Rosa Parks starts a 381-day bus boycott which was organized by Martin Luther King Jr. 1995-1957

March on Washington

More than 20,000 blacks and whites go to the lincoln memorial to hear speeches such as I had a dream by Martin Luther King Jr. They goal was to protest racial injustice. August 28, 1963

24th Amendment

Poll tax (which had been used to prevent blacks from voting) was outlawed. Black voter registration increased and canadidates begin to turn away from white supremacy view to attract the black voters. January 1964.

Civil Rights Act

Congress passes law forbidding racial discrimination in many areas of life including hotels , voting, employment, and schools. July, 1964

Bakke vs. Regents of University of California Decision

Supreme court rules that fixed racial quotas are illegal after Allan Bakke is denied admission to UC Davis medical school even though his grades and scores were better than most other applicants. 1978


James Meredith enrolls at the University of Mississippi

5000 federal troops are sent by Kennedy to allow Meredith to register for classes. Riots result in 2 deaths and hundreds of injuries. 1962

Voting Rights Act

After being passed, black voter registration grows by over 50% and black officials are elected. In Mississippi, went form 7% to 67%. July 1964

Letter from Birmingham Jail

In response to white ministers who urged him to stop causing disturbances, King issues articulate statement of nonviolent resistance to wrongs of American society. April 16, 1963