Civil Rights Movement

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Acquiring and maintaining civil rights have been a struggle for different groups throughout U.S. history. Civil rights are personal rights guaranteed and protected by the U.S. Constitution and federal laws enacted by Congress. These personal rights and laws include protection from unlawful discrimination.

In the 1883 landmark civil rights cases, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Congress did not have the power to prohibit discrimination in the private sector. This ruling stripped the Civil Rights Act of 1875 of much of its ability to protect civil rights. In the late 19th century and early 20th century, the legal justification for voiding the Civil Rights Act of 1875 was part of a larger trend by members of the Supreme Court to invalidate most government regulations of the private sector. An exception was made for laws and regulations designed to protect public morality. 

In the 1930s, during the New Deal, most of the Supreme Court justices shifted their legal theory to allow for greater government regulation of the private sector under the commerce clause. This change paved the way for the federal government to enact civil rights laws prohibiting both public and private sector discrimination based on the commerce clause. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the nation’s premier civil rights legislation. It outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; required equal access to employment and public places; and enforced school desegregation and the right to vote. The law did not end discrimination, but it did open the door to further progress.

Although the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments outlawed slavery, provided for equal protection under the law, guaranteed citizenship and protected the right to vote, individual states continued to allow unfair treatment of minorities and passed Jim Crow laws allowing segregation of public facilities. These were upheld by the Supreme Court in Plessy v. Ferguson (1895), which found state laws requiring racial segregation in public facilities that were “separate but equal” to be constitutional. This finding helped continue legalized discrimination well into the 20th century.

Following World War II, pressures to recognize, challenge and change inequalities for minorities grew. One of the most notable challenges to the status quo was the 1954 landmark Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas, which questioned the notion of “separate but equal” in public education. The Supreme Court found that “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal,” and they violate the 14th Amendment. This decision polarized Americans, fostered debate and served as a catalyst to encourage federal action to protect civil rights. [Sources: nps.gov, en.wikipedia.org, and hhs.gov.]

Legacy Stories from the Americans All Heritage Honor Roll

We are pleased to host and share these legacy stories created by honorees’ family, friends and associates. They, like us, appreciate that heritage and culture are an integral part of our nation's social fabric and want to help students participate effectively in our nation's economy, workforce and democracy.

Language
State
Last Name of Individual
First Name of Individual
Group name

Jim Crow Laws: Washington State, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming (c.1877 - c.1967) Code, Colored, Constitution, Descendant, Felony, Intermarriage, Legislature, Mulatto, Negro, Nurse, Ordinance, Penal Code, Public Transportation, Railroads, Schools, Segregation, Separate But Equal, Slavery, Statute, Supreme Court, Voting, Waiting Rooms

From the 1880s into the 1960s, most American states enforced segregation through "Jim Crow" laws. From Delaware to California, and from North Dakota to Texas, many states (and cities, too) could impose legal punishments on people for consorting with members of another race. The most common types of laws forbade intermarriage and ordered business owners and public institutions to keep their black and white clientele separated.

Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement: 1969 to 2014 Maryland (January 1, 1969 - December 31, 2014) American History, Assassination, Boycott, Constitutional Amendments, Desegregation, Discrimination, Education, Equality, Freedom Marches, Jim Crow, Lunch Counter Protests, Plessy, Public Laws, Riots, Segregation, Slavery, Voting Rights, Women's Rights

To live freely and participate in society is a right many take for granted. Throughout U.S. history, acquiring and maintaining civil rights has been a difficult struggle for many groups. We have created timelines that highlight their struggles. Each group of entries cannot exceed 2,000 words, so the timeline dates are structured accordingly.

Jim Crow Laws: Summary of Dates of Anti-Miscegenation Laws by State and Relevant Legal Cases (c.1661 - c.2000) Asian, Black, Equality, Filipino, 14th Amendment, Indians, Interracial, Marriage, Mixed-race, Mulatto, Native American, Negro, State Laws, Statehood, U.S. Supreme Court, Unconstitutional, Weddings

The word miscegenation comes from the Latin words miscere (to mix) and genus (type, family, or descent) and has been used to refer to cohabitation or intermarriage between racial groups. Regulated by state law, miscegenation was illegal in many states for decades. A fake 1864 pamphlet written by Democrats to advocate interracial marriage was designed to be the work of Lincoln and his Republicans. (Didn’t work; Lincoln was re-elected that year.) 

 

Timeline of Events That Helped Shape Our Nation: The Peopling of America Maryland (January 1, 1600 - December 31, 1991) American History, Asian, Hispanic, Mexican, Native American, Puerto Rican, World History,

Traditionally, timelines focus on dates from only one nation, cultural group or perspective. This 414-page timeline, however, documents a confluence of peoples, cultures and ideologies that make up United States history. The emphasis is on broader periods, trends and cultural aspects of many groups while recognizing the significant role one individual or small group can play in society.

Jim Crow Violence: Examples Race Riots and Lynchings, 1919(DE) - 1920 (c.1919 - c.1927) African American, Arrests, Black, Color, Court, Crowd, Discrimination, Fire, Great Migration, Jail, Jobs, Mobs, Negro, Neighborhood, Police, Rape, Segregation, Soldiers, South, Supremacy, Town, White

For 45 years after 1865, America entered the Second Industrial Revolution, which brought the rise of corporate industry and the robber barons who would lead the way to the American Century. But while America built itself economically and internationally, it adopted and entered the golden age of Jim Crow. One aspect of that golden age was the use of violence to destroy the advances Blacks made during the Reconstruction era. 

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1648-1849 Maryland (January 21, 1648 - ?) Adams, Blackwell, Bloomer, Brent, Constitution, Convention, Emma, Female, Lily, Lowell, Lyon, Mott, Oberlin, Parade, Prince, Property Rights, Reformer, Stanton, Seneca, Stevens, Taft, Tubman, Union, Voting, White, Willard, Wright, Wollstonecraft

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Jim Crow Violence: Summary and List of Examples of Race Riots and Lynchings, 1877-1967 (c.1877 - c.1967) African American, Arrests, Black, Color, Court, Crowd, Discrimination, Fire, Great Migration, Jail, Jobs, Mobs, Negro, Neighborhood, Police, Rape, Segregation, Soldiers, South, Supremacy, Town, White

For 45 years after 1865, America entered the Second Industrial Revolution, which brought the rise of corporate industry and the robber barons who would lead the way to the American Century. But while America built itself economically and internationally, it adopted and entered the golden age of Jim Crow. One aspect of that golden age was the use of violence to destroy the advances Blacks made during the Reconstruction era. 

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1850-1868 (January 1, 1850 - December 31, 1868) Anthony, Association, Blackwell, Bloomer, Clark, Court, Davis, Douglass, Elections, Equal Rights, Foster, Garrison, Male, Property, Severance, Smith, Stanton, Stone, Stowe, Truth, Vineland

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Jim Crow Violence: Examples of Race Riots and Lynchings, 1866-1898 (c.1866 - c.1898) African American, Arrests, Black, Color, Court, Crowd, Discrimination, Fire, Great Migration, Jail, Jobs, Mobs, Negro, Neighborhood, Police, Rape, Segregation, Soldiers, South, Supremacy, Town, White

For 45 years after 1865, America entered the Second Industrial Revolution, which brought the rise of corporate industry and the robber barons who would lead the way to the American Century. But while America built itself economically and internationally, it adopted and entered the golden age of Jim Crow. One aspect of that golden age was the use of violence to destroy the advances Blacks made during the Reconstruction era. 

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1869-1873 Maryland (January 1, 1869 - December 31, 1873) AERA, African, Anti-Suffragism, Association, Attorney, AWSA, Constitutional, Convention, Equal Rights, 15th Amendment, House, Jurors, Legislation, Legislature, Men, NWSA, States, Supreme Court, Territory, Vote, Woman’s Journal

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Jim Crow Violence: Examples of Riots and Lynchings, 1921-1955 (c.1921 - c.1955) African American, Arrests, Black, Color, Court, Crowd, Discrimination, Fire, Great Migration, Jail, Jobs, Mobs, Negro, Neighborhood, Police, Rape, Segregation, Soldiers, South, Supremacy, Town, White

For 45 years after 1865, America entered the Second Industrial Revolution, which brought the rise of corporate industry and the robber barons who would lead the way to the American Century. But while America built itself economically and internationally, it adopted and entered the golden age of Jim Crow. One aspect of that golden age was the use of violence to destroy the advances Blacks made during the Reconstruction era. 

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1874-1887 Maryland (January 1, 1874 - December 31, 1887) Activism, Amendment, Association, Black, Constitution, CWFA, Declaration, Elections, Equal, History, Male, National, Native American, Protest, School Elections, Supreme Court, Voting, WCTU

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Jim Crow Violence: Examples of Race Riots and Lynchings, 1900-1910 (c.1900 - c.1910) African American, Arrests, Black, Color, Court, Crowd, Discrimination, Fire, Great Migration, Jail, Jobs, Mobs, Negro, Neighborhood, Police, Rape, Segregation, Soldiers, South, Supremacy, Town, White

For 45 years after 1865, America entered the Second Industrial Revolution, which brought the rise of corporate industry and the robber barons who would lead the way to the American Century. But while America built itself economically and internationally, it adopted and entered the golden age of Jim Crow. One aspect of that golden age was the use of violence to destroy the advances Blacks made during the Reconstruction era. 

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1888-1902 Maryland (January 1, 1888 - December 31, 1902) Anti-suffrage, CESL, ICW, IWSA, Constitution, Conference, Convention, Female, NAWSA, NCCWA, NCVJ, Organization, Referendum, Religion, Remonstrance, School Elections, Supreme Court, Vote

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Jim Crow Violence: Examples of Race Riots and Lynchings, 1911-1919(AL-CA) (c.1911 - c.1919) African American, Arrests, Black, Color, Court, Crowd, Discrimination, Fire, Great Migration, Jail, Jobs, Mobs, Negro, Neighborhood, Police, Rape, Segregation, Soldiers, South, Supremacy, Town, White

For 45 years after 1865, America entered the Second Industrial Revolution, which brought the rise of corporate industry and the robber barons who would lead the way to the American Century. But while America built itself economically and internationally, it adopted and entered the golden age of Jim Crow. One aspect of that golden age was the use of violence to destroy the advances Blacks made during the Reconstruction era. 

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1903-1912 Maryland (January 1, 1903 - December 31, 1912) AFL, Amendment, Anti-Suffrage, Association, CESL, Chinese, Congress, Constitutional, Court, Convention, ELSSW, Expatriation, HERL, First, IAW, IWD, Legislature, March, NAOWS, New York City, Triangle, Union, WTUL, WTULNY

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Jim Crow Violence: Examples of Race Riots and Lynchings, 1965-1967 (c.1965 - c.1967) African American, Arrests, Black, Color, Court, Crowd, Discrimination, Fire, Great Migration, Jail, Jobs, Mobs, Negro, Neighborhood, Police, Rape, Segregation, Soldiers, South, Supremacy, Town, White

For 45 years after 1865, America entered the Second Industrial Revolution, which brought the rise of corporate industry and the robber barons who would lead the way to the American Century. But while America built itself economically and internationally, it adopted and entered the golden age of Jim Crow. One aspect of that golden age was the use of violence to destroy the advances Blacks made during the Reconstruction era. 

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1913-1918 Maryland (January 1, 1913 - December 31, 1918) Alpha, Conference, CUWS, Parade, Congress, Election, Puck, Mother’s March, Paul, Municipal, Silent-Sentinels, Wilson

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”

Racial Violence Against Africans Americans: Pre-Civil War (c.1824 - April 12, 1856) Abolitionist, Anti-Abolitionist, Blacks, Equality, Mob, Proslavery, Revolt, Riots, Slave, Tension, Unemployment, Whites

Violence against African Americans, both free and those who had escaped slavery, was not limited to the South, where their status was clearly defined. Slavery has existed in every human society at different times for a variety of reasons, but in America, slavery was linked directly to a system of racial superiority.

Timeline of the Women's Suffrage Movement: 1919-1936 Maryland (January 1, 1919 - December 31, 1936) Alpha, ABCL, Anthony, Citizenship, CCC, Department-of-Labor, ERA, FERA, First, Immigration, LWV, 19th Amendment, NCAI, NCW, Nobel, NWP, NYA, Prison-Train, Puerto Rico, She, Supreme Court, “Watchfires,” Wilson

The word “suffrage” means “voting as a right rather than a privilege,” and has been in the English language since the Middle Ages. Suffrages originally were prayers. Then the meaning was extended to requests for assistance, then the assistance provided by a supporting vote, and finally the vote itself. Therefore, in 1787 the Constitution used suffrage to mean “an inalienable right to vote.”