Rosa Parks By: mark Schiavo

Early Life

Rosa Louise McCauley was born in Tuskegee, Alabama on February 4th, 1913. Her parents James McCauley and Leona Edwards. Her father was employed as a carpenter and her mother as a teacher. In her younger years she was sick much of the time, and as a result, was a small child. Her parents eventually separated and her mother took her and her brother and moved to Pine Level, a town adjacent to Montgomery, Alabama.


Rosa Parks worked as a seamstress, a cashier and also a teacher.


In 1932, at age 19, Rosa met and married Raymond Parks, a barber and an active member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. It was a tough time, but with her boyfriend's (at the time) support, Rosa earned her high school degree. She soon became actively involved in civil rights issues by joining the Montgomery chapter of the NAACP in 1943, serving as the chapter's youth leader as well as secretary to NAACP President E.D. Nixon.

Rosa's Influence on Society

She was tired after spending the day at work as a department store seamstress. She stepped onto the bus for the ride home and sat in the fifth row. (The first row of the colored section)

After the bus was full, Rosa and 3 other African Americans were asked to move to the back of the bus so there could be enough seats for the whites. The other African Americans moved, however, Rosa stayed. The bus driver told her he would have her arrested, and she replied with, "You may do that."

Knowing that the city bus system depends heavily on the African-American community, the black leaders agree to call a boycott of all city buses on Monday, December 5. A new and popular minister in Montgomery by the name of Martin Luther King, Jr. is chosen to lead the boycott. By Friday evening the news of the upcoming boycott has spread throughout the city.

Finally, almost one year after Rosa Parks's refusal to give up her seat, the Supreme Court rules — on November 13, 1956 — that Montgomery's segregation laws are unconstitutional. Rosa has made an impact on her community, and now everyone will remember her as the brave hero who led the way.


"Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott." Independence Hall Association, n.d. Web. 09 Feb. 2017. Staff. "Montgomery Bus Boycott." A&E Television Networks, 2010. Web. 09 Feb. 2017.

"Before Rosa Parks, There Was Claudette Colvin." NPR. NPR, n.d. Web. 09 Feb. 2017.

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