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Brown vs Board of Education Topeka, Kansas
Transcript of Brown vs Board of Education Topeka, Kansas
By Anne Harrell
Before the Court Case
The Ruling of Plessy v. Ferguson was still in effect
The Brown Family lived in a diverse neighborhood
Linda attended a school further away from her home than the nearby whites only school
Linda's father wanted to enroll Linda in the nearby whites only school but was rejected since Linda was part black
Before this landmark Supreme Court case, there was another landmark case in 1896 called Plessy v. Ferguson that deemed segregated facilities were constitutional as long as they were "equal"
Linda's father filed a complaint since Linda was not allowed to enroll in the whites only school. He said that because Topeka's blacks only schools were not equal to the whites only school, that this violated the Constitution's Equal Protection Clause
The first decade to have multiple successes for the movement of civil rights
Segregated schools were still deemed constitutional until Brown v. Board of Education
Born Feb. 20, 1942 in Topeka, Kansas
Father -was a black man who first showed interest in taking Linda's case to the court
Mother -was white and Jewish. Was involved with Linda's case as well.
Sisters- 2 younger sisters named Cheryl and Terry
The Case Continued
Kansas had 11 cases prior to Linda Brown's case dealing with school integration
In 1950, Topeka's NAACP chapter decided they would challenge the Plessy v. Ferguson ruling again. Oliver Brown as chosen as lead plaintiff.
February 28, 1951 the NAACP files suit
After denial from the Federal District court, Brown and the NAACP appealed the case to the Supreme Court on October 1, 1951.
The case also included other cases that were filed in South Carolina, Delaware, and Virginia.
Lawyers first spoke to the Supreme Court on December 9, 1952
State Board of Education argued they did not see a problem with segregated schools
The Case Continued
Lawyers for the Browns argued that there should only be segregated education when someone can actually prove that black children are different than everyone else.
All of the lawyers gave their arguments over the course of 3 days. For several months after this, the Supreme Court justices would discuss it.
The Supreme Court did not make a ruling and wanted to ask the lawyers more questions. Halfway through these questions a Supreme Court justice died.
After getting a replacement justice, the Supreme Court heard the case again a year later.
On May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Linda Brown and the other black students.
Linda Brown Speaks at Fiftieth Anniversary of the Supreme Court Ruling
After the Case
After the Case Continued
In 1956, 49% of Americans believed that whites and blacks should be attending the same school. 61% of Northerners and 15% of Southerners thought so as well.
In 1957, 9 black students integrating into a high school in Little Rock, Arkansas had to be protected by the Federal Arkansas National Guard and paratroopers from the 101st Airborne Division.
In numerous states their are cases of people using violence, protesting, etc against integration. In Prince Edward County VA, instead of integrating public schools they shut them down and whites go to private schools.
The Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education was a landmark case not only because of what was ruled, but also because it started many more civil rights movements.
Did schools follow the ruling and desegregate?
Yes some did but many did not.
Even after the Supreme Court ordered public schools to desegregate "with all deliberate speed" a year after the ruling and even after the Supreme Court mandated schools be integrated many years later, there are still over 200 open school desegregation cases on Federal court dockets.
What about Linda Brown and her family?
Linda was in junior high by the time of the court ruling and her school had already integrated before the ruling.
The family moved in 1959
Oliver Brown died 2 years after the move and the family moved again
Linda went on to attend Washburn University and Kansas State University
My thesis: Brown v. Board of Education was the beginning of the civil rights era that led to many more successes
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Linder, Douglas. "Esther Brown and Oliver Brown: The Story of the Two Browns in Brown v Board of Education of Topeka." Esther Brown and Oliver Brown: The Story of the Two Browns in Brown v Board of Education of Topeka. University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law, n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/brownvboard/meetthebrowns.html>.
McBride, Alex. "Brown v. Board of Education." UNC TV. Educational Broadcasting Corporation, n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://www.pbs.org/wnet/supremecourt/rights/landmark_brown.html>.
Vox, Lisa. "Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement, 1951-1959." About.com African-American History. About.com, n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://afroamhistory.about.com/od/timelines/a/50sCVTimeline.htm>.
Wormser, Richard. "Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)." PBS. Educational Broadcasting Corporation, n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://www.pbs.org/wnet/jimcrow/stories_events_plessy.html>.