Civil Rights Era

Top Ten Events by Lynnette Casillas


Martin Luther King Jr formed the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957. This aimed to mobilize the vast power of the black churches on behalf of black rights. This was an exceptional strategy because the black churches were among the most organized as well as the largest.

Brown vs Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas

Although racial segregation was the norm at this time, in May of 1954, the Supreme Court said that segregation in public schools was unconstitutional and unequal. This decision ultimately ended legal segregation of schools.

The 24th Amendment

This amendment, passed in 1964, prohibited any poll tax in elections for federal officials.

Nixon-Kennedy Debates

In 1960, Nixon and Kennedy had the first ever televised presidential debate. They discussed things from domestic issues to foreign policies and relations with Cuba. This was TV's grand entrance

Martin Luther King Jr

MLK instated the SCLC, he is also famous for his "I Have A Dream" speech, his pivotal role in The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. He is known as one of the most influential civil rights leaders.

Central High School

9 students were prevented by the Arkansas governor and Truman sent in military escorts for each student to get to class safely. This took place in Little Rock, Arkansas, in 1957.


In 1960, the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee was created by a group of southern black students. This group gave more force and focus to the efforts that were currently going on in North Carolina for equal treatment in restaurants, transportation, housing, and voter registration.

Rosa Parks

In 1955, Rosa Parks was asked to relieve herself from her seat and give it up to a white person, and she said no. She continuously refused and was then arrested. This led to a yearlong boycott of buses, and told each white person that the black population was no longer going to be submissive to the white population

Sweatt vs Painter

A man whose last name was Sweatt was refused admission at the University of Texas on the grounds that the Texas State Constitution refused integration in education. When it was taken to the Supreme Court, they changed the "separate but equal" doctrine that had been in place by the Plessy vs Ferguson case. This certain case was influential in the Brown vs Board of Education that took place 4 years later.

Montgomery Bus Boycott

After Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat, the black population teamed together in boycotting the bussing system. This lasted for a year, and led to the Supreme Court ruling that segregation on buses is unconstitutional. MLK became a civil rights leader.