1857: Dred Scott was a slave who claimed he was free because his master moved him to a free state. Chief Justice Roger Taney said he would not be free because he was his property and that he would never be an american citizen.
1863: Abraham Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation and it stated that all slaves were free in confederate states. This did not change anything though because it wasn't a change to the constitution. It gave hope to slaves.
1865: President Lincoln made an amendment (a change to the constitution) that banned any slavery and it canceled out many former slavery laws. This amendment was the 13th amendment and it was ratified in 1865.
1868: The 14th amendment said that anyone, no matter what, if they were born in the United States, they could be an American citizen.
1870: African Americans weren't allowed to vote before 1870. The 15th amendment made it illegal to stop African American men from voting.
1896: The supreme court ruled that segregation is okay as long as African American are given equal rights. African American people were to be treated equally but kept separated from white people.
1954: The supreme court ruled that segregation was unconstitutional in public schools. This law made it legal for black and white children to go to school together.
1955: In Montgomery there were separate seats for white and black people. Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white man. For a year African Americans boycotted bus. On December 21, 1956 the supreme court ruled that segregated buses were unconstitutional.
Colored Students Entering a School
1957: Many schools did not allow black students to attend schools with white people even though the supreme court ruled it unconstitutional. In 1957 nine black students tried to attend Little Rock Central High School, the governor tried to prevent this so the president had to overrule him.
February 1960: On February 1, 1960 four black college students went to eat lunch in Greensboro, North Carolina. The restaurant would not serve them and the students would not leave the restaurant. This was a type of peaceful protest.
November 1960: A first grader, Ruby Bridges, was chosen to attend a white school. Many people pulled their kid out from the school because they did not want their kid to go to school with a colored child. Ruby and her mother were escorted into the school.
1961: Freedom Riders were people that rode buses through segregated places in the south to protest. Not only colored people protested.
1962: James Meredith applied for the University of Mississippi and was accepted. When they found out he was African American they denied his application. He arrived at the entrance and it was blocked off. At one point he was able to attend and graduate with a degree.
1963: On august 1963, Martin Luther king Jr gave his speech I have a dream. He said U.S. citizens should end racism. This speech helped encourage the president to pass laws against discrimination.