Civil Rights Terms 1954-1968


The Dred Scott Decision

Dred Scott was a former slave who claimed since he had been brought into a free country he should be free too. The Dred Scott Decision was the decision made by Dred's owner that slaves would never have American Citizenship.


The Emancipation Proclamation

The Emancipation Proclamation was a document that stated that all slaves were to be free in the Confederate states. Even though Abraham Lincoln was the president and wanted for this to be effective, he was not in charge of the Confederate States so the Emancipation Proclamation was not effective.


The 13th Amendment

The 13th amendment was an amendment that stated that no form of slavery shall be supported and that all former laws having to do with slavery shall be discarded. 27 out of 36 of the states ratified or accepted this amendment.


The 14th Amendment

Before the 14th amendment was ratified,the law sated that no slave would be able to become a US citizen. The 14th amendment changed the law and stated that anyone, no matter what race, if they were born in the United States, they would be able to have an American Citizenship.


The 15th Amendment

Before the 15th amendment was ratified, African Americans didn't have the right to vote. After the 15th amendment was ratified, it was stated that all men of all races could vote .


Plessy vs. Ferguson

The Plessy vs. Ferguson was a case in court that stated that segregation was fine as long as African Americans were given equal accommodations as others. This meant that there would be separate bathrooms, schools, restaurants, water fountains etc.


Brown vs. The Board of Education

This was a case that stated that segregation was unconstitutional in public schools. This made it possible for all races to go to the same school.


The Montgomery Bus Boycott

The Montgomery Bus Boycott was started when Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white man. This led to a series of bus boycotts which were when African Americans would refuse to get up to give their seats to whites.


Little Rock Nine

Even though it was stated that segregation was unconstitutional, many schools still refused to let African Americans attend their school. Nine African Americans tried to attend Little Rock Central High School and the governor of Arkansas tried to prevent them from getting in but the president overruled his decision

February 1860


Sit-ins were when African Americans sat in all-white bars or restaurants and refused to get up. People would throw food and spit in the people's faces but the African Americans would not move even though they would not be served.

November 1960

Ruby Bridges

Ruby Bridges was a little girl who attended a segregated New Orleans school. US Marshals had to escort her to school every day. Parents of the other kids started pulling their kids out of school because they felt it was wrong for their kids to go to school with a "slave" even though she was not a slave.


Freedom Riders

Freedom riders were people of all different races who were against segregation. Freedom Riders would sit in buses and go to segregated places to protest and challenge the laws.


James Meredith

James Meredith was and African American college student who wanted to get into the University of Mississippi. He got accepted, but when school officials learned his race, they rejected him. The Supreme Court forced the college to let him in and they agreed, but when he got there the doors were blocked. He eventually finished college and graduated with a degree in political science.


I Have a Dream Speech

During the march on Washington, Martin Luther King Jr delivered his famous "I Have a Dream Speech" in front of 250, 000 people who believed segregation was wrong. This speech inspired a lot of people because it protested against the world's problems including segregation.


Created with images by KlausHausmann - "hands handcuffs tied up"

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