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civil rights



  • Charles Sherrod: An Unheralded Giant of the Civil Rights Struggle

    by Ansley L. Quiros

    "Charles Sherrod is the most important civil rights figure you've never heard of"--fighting for six decades in southwest Georgia, persevering through incremental gains after the publicity of the Albany Movement faded. 



  • How Pauli Murray Masterminded Brown v. Board of Education

    by Tejai Beulah Howard

    Overcoming marginalization by male classmates, Pauli Murray made a bet with a professor that segregation could be challenged by arguing that separate was inherently unequal. Murray collected on the bet only after the 1954 ruling validated the argument, but was long denied credit. 



  • Libraries Do Face Attacks, but Not Like the "Freedom Libraries" of 1964

    As yet, public attacks on libraries over programming and books dealing with racism and LGBTQ issues have not escalated to the routine firebombing of the libraries founded by activist groups during the "Freedom Summer" to help Black Mississippians access books and political information. 



  • Will Biden Finally Pardon Callie House?

    Callie House led an organization that sought pensions as a form of reparation and relief for formerly enslaved people. In 1917 unfriendly federal officials prosecuted her for mail fraud for circulating her organization's materials. 



  • At its 50th Reunion, La Raza Unida Asks How to Pass the Torch

    La Raza Unida grew out of civil rights mobilization in the 1960s and worked to mobilize the large, complex, and internally divided communities of ethnic Mexican Texans, focusing on education and voting rights, and struggling to bridge radical and moderate political outlooks. 



  • A Short History of Fake History, and Why We Fight for the Truth

    by Robert S. Mcelvanie

    One of the most important parts of the civil rights struggle was an interracial effort to fight against a narrative of fake history that had been institutionalized in and out of the Jim Crow South—the white supremacist mythology of the "lost cause." That legacy should guide schools today. 



  • The Promise and Peril of the "Third Reconstruction"

    by Peniel E. Joseph

    At a time when the nation is balanced precariously between advocates for multiracial democracy and white nationalists, it is important to understand the history and the incompleteness of the expansion of freedom and democracy during Reconstruction. 



  • Three Historians on the Legacy of the 1963 March on Washington

    William Jones, Adrian Lentz-Smith and Laurie Green discuss the largely-forgotten demands of the marchers for economic redistribution, full employment and labor rights, as well as the impact the march's organizers had on the culture of protest in the United States. 



  • Is King's Dream Still Alive?

    by Peniel E. Joseph

    Although things appear grim on many fronts, the recent success of the Biden administration in passing significant reforms through a divided Senate reflects the broader context of King's 1963 address: progress toward supporting human dignity on many fronts. 



  • Grant for Public History of Natchez, MS Civil Rights Sites

    “This is great news for Natchez,” Mayor Dan Gibson said in a news release. “These grant funds will help greatly in our efforts to better tell the entire history of Natchez to include commemorating our African American historic sites.”