The civil rights movement was a worldwide political movement for equality before the law, occurring between approximately 1950 and 1980. Civil rights means that people have the right to be treated the same regardless of their race, gender, or religion,
practical issues of discrimination remained.
W.E.B. (William Edward Burghardt) Dubois was one of the most influential black leaders of the first half of the 20th Century. He shared in the founding of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, or NAACP, in 1909.
Rosa Parks, an African-American woman, refused to give her seat to a white person on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Rosa Parks was arrested on December 1st as required by the city ordinance. The bus boycott was launched. The bus segregation ordinance was declared unconstitutional. Segregation on interstate buses and trains was banned by Federal Interstate Commerce Commission.
Dr. King’s 1963 Letter from Birmingham Jail inspired a growing national civil rights movement. In Birmingham, the goal was to completely end the system of segregation in every aspect of public life (stores, no separate bathrooms and drinking fountains, etc.) and in job discrimination. Also in 1963, King led a massive march on Washington DC where he delivered his now famous, I Have A Dream speech. King’s tactics of active nonviolence (sit-ins, protest marches) had put civil-rights squarely on the national agenda.