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Civil Rights in America

A joint project from Footnote and Gannett. African Americans’ long struggle for basic civil rights sparked the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and '60s. It is a movement that serves as a reminder that freedom is never free and continues to touch the lives of every American today.

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Medgar Evers
Medgar Evers
African American civil rights activist from Mississippi
4 Girls Killed in Sixteenth Street Baptist Church Bombing
4 Girls Killed in Sixteenth Street Baptist Church Bombing
Missing poster for Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney
Missing poster for Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney
FBI Poster for missing civil rights workers Andrew Goodman, James Chaney and Michael Schwerner
Vernon Dahmer
Vernon Dahmer
Civil rights leader and president of the Forrest County chapter of the NAACP, in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
Evers, Medgar
Evers, Medgar
1930 US Federal Census record of Medgar Evers.
King, Martin L
King, Martin L
US Federal Census record for Martin Luther King Jr and his family. The census worker enumerated the first names of Dr King and his father as "Marvin" instead of Martin.
A Resolution of the UNC Chapter of the Student Peace Union - 17 March 1963
A Resolution of the UNC Chapter of the Student Peace Union - 17 March 1963
From the Records of the Office of President - William C. Friday Files (#40009), University Archives, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. http://www.lib.unc.edu/mss/exhibits/protests/pop_catalog11.html
Leaflet, "Wanted: Picketers" - March 1960
Leaflet, "Wanted: Picketers" - March 1960
Records of the Office of Chancellor - William B. Aycock Series (#40020), University Archives, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. http://www.lib.unc.edu/mss/exhibits/protests/pop_catalog2.html
Letter from 8 UNC School of Law professors to President William Friday - 6 June 1963
Letter from 8 UNC School of Law professors to President William Friday - 6 June 1963
From the Records of the Office of President - William C. Friday Files (#40009), University Archives, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. http://www.lib.unc.edu/mss/exhibits/protests/pop_catalog12.html
Andrew Goodman
Andrew Goodman
One of three American civil rights activists killed in the infamous Mississippi Burning incident of 21 June 1964.
César Chávez
César Chávez
Leader of the Chicano Civil Rights movement.
Claude Black
Claude Black
Baptist minister who helped lead and organize marches throughout Texas in the 1950s and 1960s.
Daisy Bates
Daisy Bates
Co-creator of the Arkansas State Press (a civil rights newspaper) and later President of the Arkansas State Conference of NAACP.
Ella Baker
Ella Baker
A behind-the-scenes civil rights activist, beginning as early as the 1930s.
James Bevel
James Bevel
A minister and civil rights leader who initially called for and organized the famous March on Washington.
James Chaney
James Chaney
One of three American civil rights activists killed in the infamous Mississippi Burning incident of 21 June 1964.
Julian Bond
Julian Bond
A founding member of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and one of eight African Americans elected to the Georgia House of Representatives after Civil Rights legislation was passed.
Lucy Burns
Lucy Burns
A women's suffrage and voting rights leader. Together with Alice Paul, formed the National Woman's Party.
Medgar Evers
Medgar Evers
Filed lawsuit against the University of Mississippi Law School for segregation, and eventually was assassinated for his activism. (See the "Medgar Evers shot" event on the Civil Rights timeline on this site.)
Michael Schwerner
Michael Schwerner
One of three American civil rights activists killed in the infamous Mississippi Burning incident of 21 June 1964.
Ralph Abernathy
Ralph Abernathy
A clergyman, activist, and Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) official.
Stokely Carmichael
Stokely Carmichael
A Trinidadian-American civil rights activist, "Honorary Prime Minister" of the Black Panther Party.
James Farmer
James Farmer
A leader in CORE and a civil rights activist.
Max and Paul Laprad sit in
Max and Paul Laprad sit in
In the 1960s, I, Maxine Walker Giddings, joined the sit in movement at Fisk University in Nashville. On that fateful February day, I sat in with Paul Laprad, an exchange student. He was pulled from his stool; violence erupted, directed at him. We were later arrested.
Maxine Walker Marches During Sit-in Era behind Angeline Butler and Dianne Nash
Maxine Walker Marches During Sit-in Era behind Angeline Butler and Dianne Nash
During Nashville sit-ins, we marched several times. I am seen marching in the second row wearing glasses and a short, tan coat.
Maxine Walker Looks Askance as Paul Laprad is Pulled off his seat at lunch counter sit in 1960
Maxine Walker Looks Askance as Paul Laprad is Pulled off his seat at lunch counter sit in 1960
As we were sitting in at McClellan's in Nashville, persons pulled Paul from his seat next to me and began hitting him roughly. I turned aside in shock, but was trained to do nothing. These were the 1960s from Fisk Unviersity.
9535438_113859035409
9535438_113859035409
This is the marker on Highway 80 in Lowndesboro Alabama where my mom was murdered
Rosa Parks
Rosa Parks
Rosa, taken in early 80's at Howard University
.22 Caliber Killings, Buffalo, NY
.22 Caliber Killings, Buffalo, NY
There was eight attacks on Buffalo area black men by “.22-Caliber Killer” Joseph G. Christopher in the early 1980s. Christopher was a white former Army private. The sign says it all.
Civil Rights March
Civil Rights March
The march for Civil Rights in Washington, D.C., 1963. Originally in: U.S. News & World Report Magazine Collection, Prints and Photographs Division (225).

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