Why Was the Civil Rights Movement Successful by 1965?

Topics: Martin Luther King, Jr., African American, United States Pages: 5 (1377 words) Published: March 5, 2011
Why was the civil rights movement successful by 1965?

The Civil Rights Movement kind of ebbed and flowed. For example, in 1957, Little Rock High School was desegregated, which allowed 9 African-American students to attend; however, the students were constantly harassed, and when they went to school their first day, they needed the National Guard there to protect them. There were the Freedom Rides of 1961, which led to Kennedy ordering the Interstate Commerce Commission to issue a new desegregation act; however, those participating in the sit-ins were harassed and arrested (at least some of them.) However, by the end of the 1960s, the Civil Rights Movement had definitely progressed. African-Americans registered to vote; Mississippi universities were integrated; affirmative action was enforced in 1965; interracial marriages were legalized in 1967; and the Civil Rights Act of 1968 was passed. Those were just a few of the many positive changes that were a result of all the hard work of the previous years

montgomery bus boycott 1955-56
Browder v. Gayle 1956
desegregation on buses 1956
Little rock 1957
Greenboro sit-ins 1960
Albany movement 1961-1962
James Meredith uni Mississipi 1962
Freedom Rides of 1961
birmingham campaign 1963
march on washington 1963
mississipi freedom summer 1964
Selma campaign 1965

One of the most significant event that marred this campaign but has nonetheless contributed to the success of it was the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. itself in the late 1960's.

But for many African Americans, especially those living in inner-city ghettos who discovered that nonviolent boycotts and sit-ins did little to alter their daily lives, the great march of 1963 marked only the first stage of a new, more radical phase of the Civil Rights Movement.

Civil Rights movement in the US was at peak from 1955 - 1965 congress passed the civil rights Act of 1964 and voting rights Act of 1965 guaranteeing basic civil rights for all Americans regardless of race, after nearly a decade of nonviolent protests and marches. Two whites and one black were murdered during the Selma- Alabama demonstration in 1965, in 1968 Martin Luther King was assassinated.

The 1950s was a great success for the civil rights movement; there were a number of developments which greatly improved the lives of black people in America and really started the civil rights movement, as black people became more confident and willing to fight for their cause.

The first big development of the ‘50s came almost immediately at the turn of the decade, when the Supreme Court essentially overturned the verdict reached in the Plessy vs. Ferguson trial of 1896. Thanks to the NAACP lawyers the Supreme Court made three decisions regarding civil rights which not only showed that at times the government was on the blacks side, but also almost completely overturned the ‘separate but equal’ idea that had been followed for 54 years.

The next big step in the civil rights movement came in 1954, with the BROWN vs. BOARD OF EDUCATION OF TOPEKA case, where Thurgood Marshall, representing Brown, argued that segregation was against the 4th Amendment of the American constitution. The Supreme

Court ruled, against President Eisenhower’s wishes, in favour of Brown, which set a precedent in education, that schools should no longer be segregated. This was the case which completely overturned the Jim Crow Laws by overturning Plessy vs. Ferguson.

Up until 1955, many of the Northern, white Americans were unaware of the extent of the racism in the ‘Southern States’, one instance in 1955 changed that greatly. The death of Emmet Till became a vital incident in the civil rights movement dude to the horrific pictures of the young boy that circulated throughout America. It is thought that up to 50,000 people viewed the body of Emmet Till, as it appeared in a number of newspapers and magazines, this greatly increased awareness of racism in the...
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