Memphis Civil Rights Case Study

1574 Words 7 Pages
Memphis had done well in comparison to other major cities that harbored the violence the civil rights movement had brought. However, blacks within Memphis felt that their rights were just as limited as they had been for a long time, and that the action that had been taken had only brushed the surface of what needed to be addressed in terms of rights for African Americans (137 Memphis Black and White). The integration of schools was a vital piece of educational equality for blacks, because many African Americans in the community were not getting as good of an education as whites in the community. During slavery, slaves knew that education was their ticket to freedom, and historically black colleges and universities began to be created (Historically …show more content…
The organization started at the college level. In 1955, five black students were denied admittance into Memphis State College (Memphis Black and White 135). This was illegal, seeing as the ruling for Brown v. Board occurred a year earlier, and specifically stated that segregation based off of race was illegal in school systems everywhere. In 1957, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that the college’s five-year plan for integration was unacceptable, and the integration of Memphis State College began in 1959 with five black women and three black men. Next was the smooth integration for younger students ranging from elementary to high school. The plan for integration was gradual, and was to integrate a new grade each year. Thirteen African American first graders were admitted to four all-white schools, and in 1962 black enrollment at white schools was up to fifty-three (Ibid., 136).
The political aspect of the civil rights movement was significant in the advancement of African American voice in society as future leaders of the country. After World War II, African Americans began to push for social equality within the city of Memphis. Many understood that a major part of gaining that equality was by achieving a strong political voice (Memphis Black and White
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Their grit and determination during demonstrations, marches, and strikes paved the way for people like George Brown to prosper as black leaders. Without the brave people who participated in these demonstrations, many of the accomplishments achieved by African Americans following the significant events during the civil rights movement wouldn’t have been possible. However, both the leaders and the followers secured a bright future for black leaders, which led to a stronger social, educational, and political voice in the African American

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