Timeline of the African-American Civil Rights Movement

Timeline of the African-American Civil Rights Movement

This is a timeline of the African-American Civil Rights Movement.

1600 – 1799

See also Racism in the United States.

*unknown - Both free and enslaved African Americans fought in Bacon's Rebellion along with English colonists.

*September 9- In the Stono Rebellion, South Carolina slaves gathered at the Stono River to plan an armed march for freedom.

* Thousands of enslaved African Americans in the South escaped to British or Loyalist lines, as they were promised freedom if they fought with the British. In South Carolina, 25,000 enslaved African Americans, one-quarter of those held, escaped to the British. [ [http://www.digitalhistory.uh.edu/hyperhistorian.cfm The American Revolution and Slavery, Digital History] accessed 5 Mar 2008] After the war, many African Americans left with the British for England; others went with other Loyalists to Canada and settled in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.
* Many free blacks in the North fought with the colonists for the rebellion.

*July 13, The Northwest Ordinance bans the expansion of slavery into U.S. territories north of the Ohio River and east of the Mississippi River.

1800 – 1859

Early 1800s
*unknown - first Black Codes enacted.

*August 30 - Gabriel Prosser's attempt to lead a slave rebellion in Richmond, Virginia was suppressed.

*July 14 - Denmark Vesey's slave rebellion in Charleston, South Carolina was suppressed.

*September - David Walker begins publication of the abolitionist pamphlet "Walker's Appeal".

*unknown - William Lloyd Garrison begins publication of the abolitionist newspaper "The Liberator".
*August - Nat Turner leads the most successful slave rebellion in U.S. history. The rebellion is suppressed, but only after many deaths.

*unknown - Frederick Douglass begins publication of the abolitionist newspaper the "North Star".

*unknown - "Roberts v. Boston" seeks to end racial discrimination in Boston public schools.

*March 20 - "Uncle Tom's Cabin" by Harriet Beecher Stowe is published.

*March 6 - In "Dred Scott v. Sandford", the Supreme Court upholds slavery. This decision is regarded as a key cause of the American Civil War.

1860 – 1874

* American Civil War - Before the Emancipation Proclamation, tens of thousands of enslaved African Americans of all ages escaped to Union lines for freedom. Contraband camps were set up in some areas, where blacks started learning to read and write. Others traveled with the Union Army. By the end of the war, more than 180,000 African Americans, mostly from the South, fought with the Union Army and Navy as members of the US Colored Troops and sailors, earning admiration and gratitude by comrades and officers.

*September 22 - Announcement of the Emancipation Proclamation, after the Battle of Antietam.

1863-1877 Reconstruction

*January 1 - The Emancipation Proclamation goes into effect.
*May 22 - U.S. Army recruits United States Colored Troops. (The 54th Massachusetts would be featured in the critically acclaimed late 20th c. movie "Glory".
*July-Irish ethnic protests against the draft in New York City turned into riots against blacks - the so-called Draft Riots.

*December 18th - The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution abolishes slavery in the U.S.
* unknown - Shaw Institute was founded in Raleigh, NC, as the first historically black college (HBCU) in the South.

*April 9 - Civil Rights Act of 1866 passed by Congress over Johnson's presidential veto. All persons born in the United States are now citizens.
*unknown - Ku Klux Klan is formed in Pulaski, Tennessee, made up of white Confederate veterans; it became a paramilitary insurgent group to enforce white supremacy.
*July- New Orleans white Citizens riot against blacks.
*September 21 - The U.S. Army regiment of Buffalo Soldiers (African Americans) formed.
*unknown - The Second Freedmen's Bureau Act would have provided longer enforcement of rights for freedmen, but it is vetoed by President Andrew Johnson.

*April 1 - Hampton Institute, an HBCU, founded in Hampton, Virginia.
*July 9 - The Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution's Section 1 requires due process and equal protection.
* unknown - Through 1871, white paramilitary groups and mobs used lynching of blacks to suppress voting and prevent ratification of new state constitutions.

*February 3 - The Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees the right of male citizens of the United States to vote regardless of race, color or previous condition of servitude.
*February 25 - Hiram Rhodes Revels becomes the first black member of the Senate (see African Americans in the United States Congress).

*October 10 - Octavius Catto is murdered in Philadelphia.

*December 11 - P.B.S. Pinchback is sworn in as the first black member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

*April 14 - In the "Slaughterhouse Cases" the Supreme Court votes 5-4 for a narrow reading of the Fourteenth Amendment. The court also discusses dual citizenship: State Citizens and U.S. Citizens.

*September- Whites riot against blacks in New Orleans-the so called "Battle of Liberty Place"

1875 – 1899

*March 1 - Civil Rights Act of 1875 signed.
*unknown - The Mississippi Plan to intimidate Blacks and suppress black voter registration and voting.

*July 8 - The Hamburg Massacre occurs when local people riot against African Americans who were trying to celebrate the Fourth of July.
*varied - White Democrats regained power in many southern state legislatures and passed the first Jim Crow laws.

*spring - Thousands of African Americans refused to live under segregation in the South and migrated to Kansas. They became known as Exodusters.

*unknown - In "Strauder v. West Virginia", the Supreme Court rules that African Americans could not be excluded from juries.
* During the 1880s, African Americans in the South reached a peak of numbers in being elected and holding local offices, even while white Democrats were working to assert control at state level.

*July 4 - Booker T. Washington opens the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute (HBCU) in Tuskegee, Alabama.

*unknown - In "Civil Rights Cases", the United States Supreme Court struck down the Civil Rights Act of 1875 as unconstitutional.

*unknown - Mark Twain's "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" was published, featuring the admirable African American character Jim.
*unknown - Judy W. Reed, of Washington, DC, and Sarah E. Goode, of Chicago, were the first African-American women inventors to receive patents. Reed may not have been able to sign her name, but she was the first African American woman to receive a patent. Signed with an "X", patent no. 305,474, granted September 23, 1884, is for a dough kneader and roller. Goode's patent for a cabinet bed, patent no. 322,177, was issued on July 14, 1885. Goode, the owner of a Chicago furniture store, invented a folding bed that could be formed into a desk when not in use.
*unknown - Ida B. Wells sued the Chesapeake, Ohio & South Western Railroad Company for its use of segregated "Jim Crow" cars.

*unknown - Ida B. Wells published her famous pamphlet, "Southern Horrors: Lynch Law in All Its Phases".

*September 18 - Booker T. Washington delivered his Atlanta Compromise address at the Cotton States and International Exposition in Atlanta, Georgia.

*May 18 - In "Plessy v. Ferguson", the Supreme Court upheld "de jure" racial segregation of "separate but equal" facilities. (see Jim Crow laws for historical discussion).

*Louisiana enacted the first state-wide grandfather clause that provided exemption for white illiterates to voter registration based on literacy test requirements.
* "Williams v. Mississippi", the Supreme Court upheld voter registration and election provisions of Mississippi's constitution because they applied to all citizens. Effectively, however, they disfranchised blacks and poor whites. The result was that other southern states copied these provisions in their new constitutions and amendments through 1908, disfranchising most African Americans and many poor whites for decades into the 20th century.

*Two-thirds of the farmers in the backcountry of the Mississippi Delta were African Americans who had managed to buy and clear land after the Civil War.

1900 – 1924

* Since the Civil War, 30,000 African-American teachers had been trained and put to work in the South. The majority of blacks had become literate. [James D.Anderson, "Black Education in the South, 1860-1935", Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 1988, pp.244-245]

*unknown - Booker T. Washington's autobiography "Up From Slavery" is published.

*unknown - W.E.B. Du Bois's seminal work "The Souls of Black Folk" is published.

*May 15 - Sigma Pi Phi, the first African-American Greek-letter organization, was founded by African-American men as a professional organization, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

*July 11 - First meeting of the Niagara Movement, an interracial group to work for civil rights.

* African-American men founded Alpha Phi Alpha at Cornell University, the first intercollegiate fraternity for African-American men.

*December 26 - Jack Johnson won the World Heavyweight Title.
*Alpha Kappa Alpha - At Howard University, African-American college women founded the first sorority for African-American women.

*February 12 - First meeting of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), an interracial group devoted to civil rights.

*September 29 - National Urban League founded.

*Great Migration - In multiple acts of resistance, more than 1.5 million African Americans left violence, disfranchisement and segregation in the South to migrate to northern and midwestern industrial cities for jobs, the chance to vote, and better education for their children

* Newly elected president Woodrow Wilson ordered physical re-segregation of Federal workplaces and employment after nearly 50 years of integrated facilities.

*February 8 - "The Birth of a Nation" is released to movie theaters. The NAACP protested in cities across the country, convincing some not to show the film.
*June 21 - In "Guinn v. United States", the Supreme Court rules against grandfather clauses used to deny Blacks the vote.
*September 9 - Professor Carter Woodson founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History in Chicago, Illinois.

*January - Professor Carter Woodson and The Association for the Study of Negro Life and History begins publishing the "Journal of Negro History", the first academic journal devoted to the study of African-American history.

*summer - Red Summer of 1919 riots: Chicago, Washington, DC; Knoxville, Tennessee, Indianapolis, Indiana, etc.
*September 28 - Omaha Race Riot of 1919, Nebraska.
*October 1-5 - Elaine Race Riot, Phillips County, Arkansas. Numerous blacks were convicted by an all-white jury or pled guilty. In "Moore v. Dempsey" (1923), the Supreme Court overturned six convictions for denial of due process under the Fourteenth Amendment.

*May 31 - Tulsa Race Riot, Oklahoma

*February 19 - In "Moore v. Dempsey", the Supreme Court holds that mob-dominated trials violate the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

1925 – 1949

*unknown - Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters organized.
*spring - American Negro Labor Congress founded.

*The League of United Latin American Citizens, the first organization to fight for the civil rights of Hispanic Americans, is founded in Corpus Christi, Texas.

*unknown - The League of Struggle for Negro Rights was founded in New York City.
*unknown - Jessie Daniel Ames formed the Association of Southern Women for the Prevention of Lynching. She got 40,000 white women to sign a pledge against lynching and for change in the South. [Angela Y. Davis,"Women, Race & Class". New York: Vintage Books, 1983, pp.194-195]

*March 25 - Scottsboro Boys arrested. All are later freed, pardoned or paroled. The film "Heaven's Fall" was made about the incident.

*June 18 - In "Murray v. Pearson", Thurgood Marshall and Charles Hamilton Houston of the NAACP successfully argued the landmark case in Maryland to open admissions to the University of Maryland School of Law on the basis of equal protection under the Fourteenth Amendment.

*August - Sprinter Jessie Owens wins four gold medals at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin.

*unknown - Billie Holiday first performs "Strange Fruit" in New York City. The song, a protest against lynching written by Abel Meeropol under the pen name Lewis Allan, became a signature song for Holiday.

1940s to 1970
* Second Great Migration - In multiple acts of resistance, more than 5 million African Americans left the violence and segregation of the South for jobs, education, and the chance to vote in northern, midwestern and California cities.

*February 12 - In "Chambers v. Florida", the Supreme Court frees three Black men who were coerced into confessing to a murder.

*early 1941 - U.S. Army forms African-American air combat units, the Tuskegee Airmen.
*June 25 - President Franklin Delano Roosevelt issues Executive Order 8802, the "Fair Employment Act", to require equal treatment and training of all employees by defense contractors.

*Six nonviolence activists in the Fellowship of ReconciliationBernice Fisher, James Russell Robinson, George Houser, James Farmer, Jr., Joe Guinn and Homer Jack — found the Committee on Racial Equality, which becomes Congress of Racial Equality.

*April 3 - In "Smith vs. Allwright" the Supreme Court ruled the whites-only Democratic Party primary in Texas was unconstitutional. [ [http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=US&vol=321&invol=649 Smith v. Allwright, 321 U.S. 649 (1944)] ]
*April 25 - United Negro College Fund incorporated.
*July 17 - Port Chicago disaster, which led to the Port Chicago mutiny.
*November 7 - Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. was elected to U.S. House of Representatives from Harlem, New York.

1945-1975 Second Reconstruction/American Civil Rights Movement

*unknown - Freeman Field Mutiny, where Black officers attempt to desegregate an all-white officers club.

*unknown - Renowned actor/singer Paul Robeson founds the American Crusade Against Lynching

*April 9 - The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) sends 16 men on the Journey of Reconciliation.
*April 15 - Jackie Robinson plays his first game for the Brooklyn Dodgers, becoming the first black baseball player in professional baseball in 60 years.

*January 12 - In "Sipuel v. Board of Regents of Univ. of Okla." the Supreme Court rules that the State of Oklahoma and the University of Oklahoma Law School could not deny admission based on race ("color").
*May 3 - In "Shelley v. Kraemer" the Supreme Court rules that the government could not enforce racial restrictive covenants, and asserts that they were in conflict with the nation's public policy.
*July 12 - Hubert Humphrey makes a controversial speech in favor of American Civil rights at the Democratic National Convention
*July 26 - President Harry S. Truman issues Executive Order 9981 ordering the end of segregation in the Armed Forces.

1950 – 1959

:"For more detail during this period, see [http://www.outreach.olemiss.edu/Freedom_Riders/Timeline.html Freedom Riders website chronology] "

*June 5 - In "McLaurin v. Oklahoma State Regents" the Supreme Court rules that a public institution of higher learning could not provide different treatment to a student solely because of his race.
*June 5 - In "Sweatt v. Painter" the Supreme Court rules that a separate-but-equal Texas law school was actually unequal, partly in that it deprived black students from the collegiality of future white lawyers.
* The Leadership Conference on Civil Rights is created in Washington, DC to promote the enactment and enforcement of effective civil rights legislation and policy.

*April 23 - High school students in Farmville, Virginia go on strike: the case "Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County" is heard by the Supreme Court in 1954 as part of "Brown v. Board of Education".
*July 26 - The United States Army high command announces it will desegregate the Army.
*December 24 - Home of NAACP activists Harry and Harriette Moore in Mims, Florida is bombed by KKK group; both die of injuries.

*January 28 - "Briggs v. Elliott": after a District Court orders separate but equal school facilities in South Carolina, the Supreme Court agrees to hear the case as part of Brown v. Board of Education.
*April 1 - Chancellor Collins J. Seitz finds for the black plaintiffs ("Belton v. Gebhart, Belton v. Bulah") and orders the integration of Hockessin elementary and Claymont High School in Delaware based on assessment of "separate but equal" public school facilities required by the Delaware constitution.
*September 4 Eleven black students attend the first day of school at Claymont High School, Delaware, becoming the first black students in the 17 segregated states to integrate a white public school. The day occurred without incident or notice by the community.
*September 5 Delaware State Attorney General informs Claymont Superintendent Stahl that the black students will have to go home because the case is being appealed. Stahl, the School Board and the faculty refuse and the students remain. The two Delaware cases are argued before the Warren US Supreme Court by Redding, Greenberg and Marshall and are used as an example of how integration can be achieved peacefully. It was a primary influence in the "Brown v. Board" case. The students become active in sports, music and theater. The first two black students graduated in June 1954 just one month after the "Brown v. Board" case.


*September 1 - In the landmark case Sarah Keys v. Carolina Coach Company, WAC Sarah Keys, represented by civil rights lawyer Dovey Roundtree, becomes the first black to challenge "separate but equal" in bus segregation before the Interstate Commerce Commission.

*May 17 - The Supreme Court rules against the "separate but equal" doctrine in "Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kans." and in "Bolling v. Sharpe", thus overturning "Plessy v. Ferguson".
*July 11 - The first White Citizens' Council meeting takes place, in Mississippi.
*In "Hernandez v. Texas", the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that Mexican Americans and all other racial groups in the United States are entitled to equal protection under the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
*November - Charles Diggs,Jr. of Detroit, Michigan is elected to Congress, the first African American elected from Michigan.
*Frankie Muse Freeman was the lead attorney for the landmark NAACP case Davis et al v. the St. Louis Housing Authority, which ended legal racial discrimination in public housing with the city. Constance Baker Motley was also an attorney for NAACP: it was a rarity to have two women attorneys leading such a high profile case.

*January 15 - President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs Executive Order 10590, establishing the President's Committee on Government Policy to enforce a nondiscrimination policy in Federal employment.
*May 7 - NAACP activist Reverend George W. Lee is killed in Belzoni, Mississippi.
*May 31 - The Supreme Court rules in "Brown II" that desegregation must occur with "all deliberate speed".
*June 29 - The NAACP wins a Supreme Court decision, ordering the University of Alabama to admit Autherine Lucy.
*August 13 - Registration activist Lamar Smith is murdered in Brookhaven, Mississippi.
*August 28 - Teenager Emmett Till is killed for whistling at a white woman in Money, Mississippi.
*November 7ndash Interstate Commerce Commission bans bus segregation in interstate travel in Sarah Keys v. Carolina Coach Company, extending the logic of Brown v. Board to the area of bus travel across state lines.
*December 1 - Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat on a bus, starting the Montgomery Bus Boycott.
* unknown - Roy Wilkins becomes the NAACP executive secretary.

*February 3 - Autherine Lucy is admitted to the University of Alabama. Whites riot, and she is suspended. Later, she is expelled for her part in further legal action against the university.
*February 24 - The policy of Massive Resistance is declared by U.S. Senator Harry F. Byrd, Sr..
*May 28 - The Tallahassee, Florida bus boycott begins.
*November 13 - In "Browder v. Gayle", the Supreme Court strikes down Alabama laws requiring segregation of buses. This ruling, together with the ICC's 1955 ruling in Sarah Keys v. Carolina Coach banning Jim Crow in bus travel among the states, is a landmark in outlawing Jim Crow in bus travel.
*unknown - Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission formed.
*unknown - The Southern Manifesto opposing integration of schools, was created and signed by members of the Congressional delegations of Southern states, including 19 Senators and 81 members of the House of Representatives, notably the entire delegations of the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Virginia. On March 12, it was released to the press.
*unknown - * Director J. Edgar Hoover orders the FBI to begin the COINTELPRO program to investigate and disrupt "dissident" groups within the United States.

*January - Southern Christian Leadership Conference formed. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is named chairman of the organization.
*September 4 - Orville Faubus, governor of Arkansas, calls out the National Guard to block integration of Little Rock Central High School.
*September - President Dwight Eisenhower federalized National Guard and also ordered US Army troops to ensure Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas is integrated. Federal and National Guard troops escort the Little Rock Nine.
*unknown - Civil Rights Act of 1957 signed by President Eisenhower.

*unknown - In "NAACP v. Alabama", the Supreme Court ruled that the NAACP was not required to release membership lists to continue operating in the state.


1960 – 1969

:"For more detail during this period, see [http://www.outreach.olemiss.edu/Freedom_Riders/Timeline.html Freedom Riders website chronology] ":"See also Race riot"

*February 1 - Four black students sit at the Woolworth's lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina, sparking six months of the Greensboro Sit-Ins.
*February 17 - Alabama grand jury indicts Martin Luther King (MLK) for tax evasion.
*February 20 - Virginia Union University students stage sit-in at Woolworth's lunch counter in Richmond. [ [http://www.vcdh.virginia.edu/risingup/ The Virginia Center for Digital History] ]
*March 3 - Vanderbilt University expels James Lawson for sit-in participation.
*March 7 - Felton Turner of Houston beaten and hung-upside down in a tree, initials KKK carved on his chest.
*March 19 - San Antonio, Texas becomes first city to integrate lunch counters.
*March 20 - Florida Governor Leroy Collins calls lunch counter segregation “unfair and morally wrong.”
*April 8 - Weak civil rights bill survives Senate filibuster.
*April 15-17 - The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) is formed in Raleigh, North Carolina.
*April 19 - Nashville civil rights lawyer Z. Alexander Looby’s home bombed.
*May - Nashville sit-ins.
*May 6 - Civil Rights Act of 1960 signed by President Dwight Eisenhower.
*May 28 - All-white Alabama jury acquits MLK.
*June 24 - MLK meets Senator John F. Kennedy (JFK).
*June 28 - Bayard Rustin resigns from SCLC after condemnation by Rep. Adam Clayton Powell, Jr..
*July 31 - Elijah Muhammad calls for an all-black state. Membership in Nation of Islam estimated at 100,000.
*August - Rev. Wyatt Tee Walker replaces Ella Baker as SCLC’s Executive Director.
*October 19 - MLK and fifty others arrested at sit-in at Atlanta’s Rich’s Department Store.
*October 26 - MLK’s earlier probation revoked; he was transferred to Reidsville State Prison.
*October 28 - After intervention from Robert F. Kennedy (RFK), King is free on bond.
*November 8 - John F. Kennedy defeats Richard Nixon in the 1960 presidential election.
*December 5 - In "Boynton v. Virginia", the U.S. Supreme Court holds that racial segregation in bus terminals s illegal because such segregation violates the Interstate Commerce Act. This ruling, in combination with the ICC's 1955 decision in Keys v. Carolina Coach, effectively outlaws segregation on interstate buses and at the terminals servicing such buses.

*January 11 - Rioting over court-ordered admission of first two African Americans at the University of Georgia leads to their suspension.
*January 31 - Member of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and nine students arrested in Rock Hill, South Carolina.
*March 6 - President John F. Kennedy issues Executive Order 10925, which establishes a Presidential committee that later becomes the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
*May 4 - The first group of Freedom Riders, with the intent of integrating interstate buses, leaves Washington, D.C. by Greyhound bus. The group, organized by the Congress for Racial Equality (CORE), leaves shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court has outlawed segregation in interstate transportation terminals.cite web |last=The King Center |first=The Chronology of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. |title=1961 |url=http://www.thekingcenter.org/mlk/chronology.html |accessdate=2007-10-20]
*May 14 - The Freedom Riders' bus is attacked and burned outside of Anniston, Alabama. A mob beats the Freedom Riders upon their arrival in Birmingham, Alabama. The Freedom Riders are arrested in Jackson, Mississippi, and spend forty to sixty days in Parchman Penitentiary.
*May 17 - Nashville students, coordinated by Diane Nash and James Bevel, take up the Freedom Ride.
*May 20 - Freedom Riders were assaulted in Montgomery, Alabama.
*May 21-22 - MLK, the Freedom Riders, and congregation of 1,500 at Rev. Ralph Abernathy’s First Baptist Church in Montgomery are besieged by mob of segregationists; Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy sends federal marshals to protect them.
*May 29ndash Attorney GeneralRobert F. Kennedy, citing the 1955 landmark ICC ruling in Sarah Keys v. Carolina Coach Company and the Supreme Court's 1960 decision in Boynton v. Virginia, petitions the ICC to enforce desegregation in interstate travel.
*June-August - U.S. Dept. of Justice initiates talks with civil rights groups and foundations on beginning Voter Education Project.
*July - SCLC begins citizenship classes; Andrew J. Young hired to direct the program. Bob Moses begins voter registration in McComb, Mississippi.
*September - James Forman becomes SNCC’s Executive Secretary.
*September 23 - Interstate Commerce Commission, at Robert F. Kennedy’s insistence, issues new rules ending discrimination in interstate travel, effective November 1, 1961, six years after the ICC's own ruling in Keys v. Carolina Coach Company.
*September 25 - Voter registration activist Herbert Lee killed in McComb, Mississippi.
*November 1 - All interstate buses required to display a certificate that reads: “Seating aboard this vehicle is without regard to race, color, creed, or national origin, by order of the Interstate Commerce Commission.” [cite book |last=Arsenault|first=Raymond|title=Freedom Riders: 1961 and the Struggle for Racial Justice |year=2006 |publisher=Oxford Univ. Press |pages=p. 439|isbn=0195136748 ]
*November 1 - SNCC workers Charles Sherrod and Cordell Reagon and nine Chatmon Youth Council members test new ICC rules at Trailways bus station in Albany, Georgia.
*November 17 - SNCC workers help encourage and coordinate black activism in Albany, Georgia, culminating in the founding of the Albany Movement as a formal coalition.
*November 22 - Three high school students from Chatmon’s Youth Council arrested after using “positive actions” by walking into white sections of the Albany bus station.
*November 22 - Albany State College students Bertha Gober and Blanton Hall arrested after entering the white waiting room of the Albany Trailways station.cite book |last=Branch |first=Taylor |title=Parting the Waters: America in the King Years |year=1988 |publisher=Simon & Schuster Paperbacks |pages=pp.527-530 |isbn=978-0-671-68742-7]
*December 10 - Freedom Riders from Atlanta, SNCC leader Charles Jones, and Albany State student Bertha Gober are arrested at Albany Union Railway Terminal, sparking mass demonstrations, with hundreds of protesters arrested over the next five days.cite book |last=Branch |first=Taylor |title=Parting the Waters: America in the King Years |year=1988 |publisher=Simon & Schuster Paperbacks |pages=pp.533-535 |isbn=978-0-671-68742-7]
*December 11-15 - Five hundred protesters arrested in Albany, Georgia.
*December 15 - Dr. King arrives in Albany, Georgia in response to a call from Dr. W. G. Anderson, the leader of the Albany Movement to desegregate public facilities.
*December 16 - Dr. King is arrested at an Albany, Georgia demonstration. He is charged with obstructing the sidewalk and parading without a permit.
*December 18 - Albany truce, including a 60-day postponement of King's trial; MLK leaves town. [cite book |last=Branch |first=Taylor |title=Parting the Waters: America in the King Years |year=1988 |publisher=Simon & Schuster Paperbacks |pages=pp.555-556 |isbn=978-0-671-68742-7]

* January 18-20 - Student protests over sit-in leaders’ expulsions at Baton Rouge’s Southern University, the nation’s largest black school, close it down.
* February - Representatives of SNCC, CORE, and the NAACP form the Council of Federated Organizations (COFO). A grant request to fund COFO voter registration activities is submitted to the Voter Education Project (VEP).
* February 26 - Segregated transportation facilities, both interstate and intrastate, ruled unconstitutional by U.S. Supreme Court.
* March - SNCC workers sit-in at US Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy's office to protest jailings in Baton Rouge.
* March 20 - FBI installs wiretaps on NAACP activist Stanley Levison’s office.
* April 3 - Defense Department orders full racial integration of military reserve units, except the National Guard.
* April 9 - Corporal Roman Duckworth shot by a police officer in Taylorsville, Mississippi.
* June - Leroy Willis becomes first black graduate of the University of Virginia College of Arts and Sciences.
* June - SNCC workers establish voter registration projects in rural Southwest Georgia.
* July 10-August 28 SCLC renews protests in Albany; MLK in jail July 10-12 and July 27-August 10.
* August 31 - Fannie Lou Hamer attempts to register to vote in Indianola, Mississippi.
* September 9 - Two black churches used by SNCC for voter registration meetings are burned in Sasser, Georgia.
* September 20 - James Meredith is barred from becoming the first black student to enroll at the University of Mississippi.
* September 30-October 1 - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black orders James Meredith admitted to Ole Miss. Meredith enrolls; riot ensues. French photographer Paul Guihard and Oxford resident Ray Gunter are killed.
* October - Leflore County, Mississippi, supervisors cut off surplus food distribution in retaliation against voter drive.
* October 23Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) begins Communist Infiltration (COMINFIL) investigation of SCLC.
* October 14-28 – Cuban Missile Crisis.
* November 7-8 – Edward Brooke selected Massachusetts Attorney General, Leroy Johnson elected Georgia State Senator, Augustus Hawkins electedfirst black from California in Congress.
* November 20 - Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy authorizes FBI wiretap on Stanley Levison’s home telephone.
* November 20 - President John F. Kennedy upholds 1960 campaign promise to eliminate housing segregation by signing Executive Order 11063 banning segregation in Federally funded housing.

*January - Incoming Alabama governor George Wallace calls for "segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever" in his inaugural address.
*April-May - The Birmingham campaign, organized by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)and the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights challenges city leaders and business owners in Birmingham, Alabama with daily mass demonstrations.
* April Mary Lucille Hamilton, Field Secretary for the Congress of Racial Equality, refuses to answer a judge in Gadsden, Alabama, until she is addressed by the honorific "Miss". It was the custom of the time to address white people by honorifics and people of color by their first names. Hamilton was jailed for contempt of court and refused to pay bail. The case "Hamilton v. Alabama", 376 U.S. 650, was filed by the NAACP It went to the Supreme Court, which ruled in 1964 that courts must address persons of color with the same courtesy extended to whites.
*April 16 - Letter from Birmingham Jail written by Martin Luther King.
*April 23, CORE activist William L. Moore is killed in Gadsden, Alabama.
*May 2-4 - Birmingham's juvenile court is inundated with African-American children and teenagers arrested after Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth launches a "D-Day" youth march, which spans three days to become the Children's Crusade. [cite book |last=Branch |first=Taylor |title=Parting the Waters: America in the King Years |year=1988 |publisher=Simon & Schuster Paperbacks |pages=pp.756-765 |isbn=978-0-671-68742-7]
*May 9-10 - After images of fire hoses and police dogs turned on protesters are shown on television, the Children's Crusade lays the groundwork for the terms of a negotiated truce on Thursday, May 9 - an end to mass demonstrations in return for rolling back oppressive segregation laws and practices. MLK and Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth announce the terms of the settlement on Friday, May 10, only after MLK holds out to orchestrate the release of thousands of jailed demonstrators with bail money from Harry Belafonte and Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy. [cite book |last=Branch |first=Taylor |title=Parting the Waters: America in the King Years |year=1988 |publisher=Simon & Schuster Paperbacks |pages=pp.786-791 |isbn=978-0-671-68742-7]
*June 9 - Fannie Lou Hamer is among several SNCC workers badly beaten by police in the Winona, Mississippi jail after their bus stops there.
*June 11 - "The Stand In The Schoolhouse Door": Alabama Governor George Wallace stands in front of a schoolhouse door at the University of Alabama in an attempt to stop desegregation by the enrollment of two black students, Vivian Malone and James Hood. Wallace only stands aside after being confronted by federal marshals, Deputy Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach, and the Alabama National Guard. Later in life he apologizes for his opposition to racial integration then.
*June 11 - President John F. Kennedy (JFK) makes his historic civil rights speech, promising a bill to Congress the next week. About civil rights for "Negroes", in his speech he asks for "the kind of equality of treatment which we would want for ourselves."
*June 12 - NAACP worker Medgar Evers is murdered in Jackson, Mississippi. (His killer was convicted in 1994.) [ [http://www.olemiss.edu/depts/english/ms-writers/dir/evers_medgar/ Medgar Evers. ] ]
*Summer - 80,000 blacks quickly registered to vote in Mississippi by a test project to show their desire to participate
*June 19 - President Kennedy sends Congress (H. Doc. 124, 88th Cong., 1st session.) his proposed Civil Rights Act. [ [http://www.congresslink.org/print_basics_histmats_civilrights64_doc7.htm Proposed Civil Rights Act.] ]
*August 28 - March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom is held. Dr. Martin Luther King gives his "I have a dream" speech. [ [http://www.abbeville.com/civilrights/washington.asp March on Washington.] ]
*September 15 - 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama kills four young girls. Spike Lee will later make the 1997 documentary 4 Little Girls about this atrocity.
*November 22 - President Kennedy is assassinated. The new President, Lyndon Johnson, decides that accomplishing JFK's legislative agenda is his best strategy, which he pursues with the results below in 1964-1965.

*January 23 - Twenty-fourth Amendment abolishes the poll tax for Federal elections.

*Summer - Mississippi Freedom Summer - voter registration in the state. Create the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party to elect an alternative slate of delegates for the national convention, as blacks are still officially disfranchised.
*June 21 - Mississippi Civil Rights Workers Murders, three civil rights workers disappear, later to be found murdered.
*June 28 - Organization of Afro-American Unity is founded by Malcolm X, lasts until his death.
*July 2 - Civil Rights Act of 1964 [http://finduslaw.com/civil_rights_act_of_1964_cra_title_vii_equal_employment_opportunities_42_us_code_chapter_21 Civil Rights Act of 1964] ] signed.cite web
title=A Brief History of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
*August - Congress passes the Economic Opportunity Act which, among other things, provides federal funds for legal representation of Native Americans in both civil and criminal suits. This allows the ACLU and the American Bar Association to represent Native Americans in cases that later win them additional civil rights.
*August - The Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party delegates challenge the seating of all-white Mississippi representatives at the Democratic national convention.
*December 10 - Dr. Martin Luther King is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, the youngest person so honored. [ [http://nobelprize.org/peace/laureates/1964/king-acceptance.html Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech.] ]
*December 14 - In "Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States", the Supreme Court upholds the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

*February 21 - Malcolm X is shot to death in Manhattan, New York, probably by members of the Black Muslim faith.
*March 7 - Bloody Sunday: Civil rights workers in Selma, Alabama begin a march to Montgomery but are stopped by a massive police blockade as they crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge. Many marchers are severely injured and one killed.
*March 15 - President Lyndon Johnson uses the phrase "We shall overcome" in a speech before Congress on the voting rights bill.
*March 25 - White volunteer Viola Liuzzo is shot and killed by Ku Klux Klan members in Mississippindash one of whom was an FBI informant.
*June 2 - Black deputy sheriff [http://www.odmp.org/officer.php?oid=9566 O'Neal Moore] is murdered in Varnado, Louisiana.
*July 2 - Equal Employment Opportunity Commission opens.
*August 6 - Voting Rights Act of 1965 signed by President Johnson.
*August 11 - Watts riots erupt in south Los Angeles.cite web
title=The History PlaceTM, Great Speeches Collection, Lyndon B. Johnson, “We Shall Overcome”
*September - Raylawni Young Branch and Gwendolyn Elaine Armstrong become the first African-American students to attend the University of Southern Mississippi.
*September 15 - Bill Cosby co-stars in "I Spy", a first for a black person on American television.
*September 24 - President Johnson signs Executive Order 11246 requiring Equal Employment Opportunity by federal contractors.

*January 10 - NAACP local chapter president Vernon Dahmer is injured by a bomb in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. He dies the next day.
*October - Black Panthers founded by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale in Oakland, California.
*November - Edward Brooke is elected to the U.S. Senate from Massachusetts. He is the first Black senator since 1881.
*unknown - Julian Bond is seated in the Georgia House of Representatives by order of the Supreme Court after his election.

*June 12 - In "Loving v. Virginia", the Supreme Court rules that prohibiting interracial marriage is unconstitutional.
*June 13 - Thurgood Marshall is the first African American appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
*August 2 - The movie "In the Heat of the Night" is released, starring Sidney Poitier.
*December 11 - The movie "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" is released, also with Sidney Poitier.
*unknown - In the trial of accused killers in the Mississippi civil rights worker murders, the jury convicts 7 of 18 accused men. Conspirator Edgar Ray Killen is later convicted in 2005.

*February 8 - The Orangeburg Massacre occurs during university protest in South Carolina.
*April 2 - On a primetime television special, Petula Clark touches Harry Belafonte's arm during a duet. Chrysler Corporation, the show's sponsor, had insisted the moment be deleted, but Clark stood firm, destroyed all other takes of the song, and delivered the completed program to NBC with the touch intact.
*April 4 - Dr. Martin Luther King is shot and killed in Memphis, Tennessee by James Earl Ray.
*April 11 - Civil Rights Act of 1968 is signed. The Fair Housing Act is Title VIII of this Civil Rights Act - it bans discrimination in the sale, rental, and financing of housing.
*October - Tommie Smith and John Carlos raise their fists to symbolize black power and unity after winning the gold and bronze medals, respectively, at the 1968 Summer Olympic Games.
*November 22 - First interracial kiss on American television, between Nichelle Nichols and William Shatner on ""
*unknown - In "Powe v. Miles", a federal court holds that the portions of private colleges that are funded by public money are subject to the Civil Rights Act.
*unknown - Poor People's Campaign marches on Washington, DC.

*December - Fred Hampton, chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party is shot and killed while asleep in bed during a police raid on his home.
*unknown - United Citizens Party is formed in South Carolina when Democratic Party refuse to nominate African-American candidates.
*unknown - Control of segregationist TV station WLBT given to a bi-racial foundation.
*unknown - Congress passes the Indian Civil Rights Act, which prohibits state governments from assuming jurisdiction over Native American lands and extends to Indians the same rights that non-Native whites have had since the addition of the Bill of Rights to the Constitution.

1970 – Present

*unknown - The film "Watermelon Man" released, directed by Melvin Van Peebles and starring Godfrey Cambridge.

*The Supreme Court, in Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education, upholds desegregation busing of students to achieve integration.

*In Baton Rouge, two Southern University students are killed by white Sheriff deputies during a school protest over lack of funding from the state. Today, the university’s Smith-Brown Memorial Union is named in their honor.

*February 27 - Start of 71-day standoff at Wounded Knee between federal authorities and members of the American Indian Movement.

*Combahee River Collective, a Black feminist group, is established in Boston, out of New York's National Black Feminist Organization.

*July 25 - In Milliken v. Bradley, the Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision holds that outlying districts could only be forced into a desegregation busing plan if there was a pattern of violation on their part. This decision reinforces the trend of white flight.
*Salsa Soul Sisters, Third World Wimmin Inc Collective, the first "out" organization for lesbians, womanists and women of color formed in New York City

*February - Black History Month is founded by Professor Carter Woodson's Association for the Study of Afro-American Life and History.

*Combahee River Collective, a Black feminist group, publishes the Combahee River Collective Statement.

*Regents of the University of California v. Bakke.

*May 24 - The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Bob Jones University did not qualify as either a tax-exempt or a charitable organization due to its racially discriminatory preactices. [ [http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?navby=CASE&court=US&vol=461&page=574 Bob Jones University v. United States, 461 U.S. 574 (1983)] ]

*The film "A Soldier's Story" is released, dealing with racism in the U.S. military.

*Established by legislation in 1983, Martin Luther King, Jr., Day is first celebrated as a national holiday.

*The Public Broadcasting System's six-part documentary "Eyes on the Prize" is first shown, covering the years 1954-1965. In 1990 it is added to by the eight-part "Eyes on the Prize II" covering the years 1965-1985.

*Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1988.
*The movie "Mississippi Burning" is released, regarding the 1964 Mississippi civil rights worker murders.

*October 1 - Colin Powell becomes Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
*December 15 - The film "Glory" is released: it features African-American Civil War soldiers.

*March 3 - four white police officers are videotaped beating African-American Rodney King.
*Civil Rights Act of 1991
*Senate confirms the nomination of Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court

*April 29 - 1992 Los Angeles riots erupt after officers accused of beating Rodney King are acquitted.
*November 18 - Director Spike Lee's film "X" on Malcolm X is released. [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104797/]

*October 16 - Million Man March in Washington, D.C.

*July 9 - Director Spike Lee releases his documentary "4 Little Girls" about the 1963 16th Street Baptist Church bombing.

*June 7 - James Byrd, Jr. was brutally murdered by white supremacists in Jasper, Texas. The scene was reminiscent of earlier lynchings. In response, Byrd's family created the James Byrd Foundation for Racial Healing.
*The film "American History X" is released, powerfully highlighting the problems of urban racism

*May 3 - The Bob Jones University, a fundamentalist South Carolina private institution, ended its ban on interracial dating. [ [http://archives.cnn.com/2000/US/03/04/bob.jones/ CNN: Bob Jones University ends ban on interracial dating] ] 2001
*January 20 - Colin Powell becomes Secretary of State

*June 23 - Supreme Court in Grutter v. Bollinger upholds the University of Michigan Law School's admission policy. However, in the simultaneously-heard Gratz v. Bollinger the University is required to change a policy.

*October 15 - the Millions More Movement holds a march in Washington D.C.
*October 25 - Rosa Parks dies at the age of 92. She was famous for starting the Montgomery Bus Boycott in 1955. Her body lies in state in the Capitol Rotunda in Washington, D.C. before her funeral.
*Edgar Ray Killen is convicted of participating in the Mississippi civil rights worker murders.

*June 3 - Barack Obama receives enough delegates by the end of state primaries to be the presumptive Democratic Party of the United States nominee. [ [http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/06/03/election.democrats/index.html CNN: Obama: I will be the Democratic nominee] ]
*August 28 - At the 2008 Democratic National Convention, in a stadium filled with supporters, Barack Obama accepted the Democratic nomination for President of the United States.

ee also

* African Americans in the United States Congress
* Affirmative action bake sale
* American Civil Rights Movement (1896-1954)
* American Civil Rights Movement (1955-1968)
* African American history
* African American literature section on Civil Rights Movement Literature
* Baseball color line
* Big Six (civil rights)
* Blackface
* Black Panther Party
* Black power
* Black pride
* Cotton Club
* Desegregation
* Equal Protection Clause
* Grandfather clause
* History of slavery in the United States
* Interstate Commerce Commission
* List of landmark African-American legislation
* Lynching in the United States
* Movies filmed in Harlem
* Nation of Islam
* Negro
* Negro league baseball
* Progressive Farmers and Household Union of America
* Racial segregation in the United States
* Racism in the United States
* Sundown town
* Uncle Tom
* Wednesdays in Mississippi
* Civil Rights Movement in Omaha, Nebraska

Other people

* Reverend Ralph Abernathy
* Marion Barry
* H. Rap Brown
* Stokely Carmichael
* Bernice Fisher
* James Forman
* A. G. Gaston
* Reverend James Lawson
* Robert Parris Moses
* Barack Obama
* Condoleezza Rice
* Bayard Rustin
* Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth
* Roy Wilkins
* Robert F. Williams

Other performers

* Count Basie
* Angela Bassett
* Halle Berry
* Sammy Davis, Jr.
* Duke Ellington
* Laurence Fishburne
* Morgan Freeman
* Danny Glover
* Don Mitchell of Ironside (TV series)
* Cicely Tyson
* Denzel Washington
* Clarence Williams III of The Mod Squad
* Oprah Winfrey

Other athletes

* Hank Aaron
* Muhammad Ali
* Arthur Ashe
* Ernie Banks
* James "Cool Papa" Bell
* Jim Brown
* Wilt Chamberlain
* Julius Erving
* Joe Frazier
* Althea Gibson
* Kareem Abdul Jabbar
* Magic Johnson
* Michael Jordan
* Jackie Joyner Kersee
* Carl Lewis
* Joe Louis
* Willie Mays
* Satchel Paige
* Sugar Ray Robinson
* Wilma Rudolph
* Bill Russell
* John Woodruff
* Tiger Woods


"To the reader" : If you arrived at a footnote by clicking on a superscript [b] (or [c] ) then click on the superscript b (or c), to return.

External links

*Tullos, Allen. " [http://www.southernspaces.org/contents/2008/tullos/1a.htm Selma Bridge: Always Under Construction] ," "Southern Spaces" July 28, 2008.
* [ Detailed year-by-year timeline 1951-1968]
* [http://www.usm.edu/crdp/ University of Southern Mississippi's Civil Rights Documentation Project] , includes an extensive Timeline
* [http://www.outreach.olemiss.edu/Freedom_Riders/Timeline.html Freedom Riders website chronology] , extremely detailed
* [http://www.africanamericans.com/CivilRights.htm Civil Rights Timeline] , sections on Martin Luther King, Jr.
* [ 41 Lives for Freedom]
* [http://www.baseball-almanac.com/firsts/first8.shtml Black baseball firsts]
* [http://www.depts.ttu.edu/museumttu/A-A.%20Teacher's%20Manual.pdf African-American Pioneers of Texas]
* [http://www.crossroadstofreedom.org/ Memphis Civil Rights Digital Archive]

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