Join our mailing list

* indicates required

Tags Matching:

segregation


  • Originally published 06/13/2013

    George Wallace’s daughter lives in shadow of his segregationist stand

    For 50 years Peggy Wallace Kennedy has lived in the shadow cast by her father, Alabama Gov. George C. Wallace, when he stood in a doorway and tried to stop two black students from integrating the University of Alabama.That single episode in the American civil rights movement — his infamous “stand in the schoolhouse door” — attached an asterisk to her name, she says. It’s a permanent mark she can never erase, despite her own history as a moderate Democrat who gave early support to candidate Barack Obama for president in 2008.“If you’re George Wallace’s daughter, people think the asterisk will always be there. ‘Oh, your father stood in the schoolhouse door,’” she said in a recent interview.Kennedy was just 13 at the time. Her mother, Lurleen Wallace, had whisked her away to a lake fishing cabin with her three siblings that day, so they would be nowhere near the wrenching historic drama in which her father played a leading role....

  • Originally published 05/17/2013

    Unlikely interracial WWII romance

    The nurse and the soldier may never have met – and eventually married – had it not been for the American government’s mistreatment of black women during World War II.Elinor Elizabeth Powell was an African-American military nurse. Frederick Albert was a German prisoner of war. Their paths crossed in Arizona in 1944. It was a time when the Army was resisting enlisting black nurses and the relatively small number allowed entry tended to be assigned to the least desirable duties....

  • Originally published 05/01/2013

    Detroit wall dividing whites and blacks in 1940s remains, spurs art, jobs and object lessons

    DETROIT — When Eva Nelson-McClendon first moved to Detroit’s Birwood Street in 1959, she didn’t know much about the wall across the street. At 6 feet tall and a foot thick, it wasn’t so imposing, running as it did between houses on her street and one over. Then she started to hear the talk.Neighbors told her the wall was built two decades earlier with a simple aim: to separate homes planned for middle-class whites from blacks who had already built small houses or owned land with plans to build.“That was the division line,” Nelson-McClendon, now, 79, says from the kitchen of her tidy, one-story home on the city’s northwest side. “Blacks lived on this side, whites was living on the other side. ... That was the way it was.”That’s not the way it is anymore. But the wall remains, a physical embodiment of racial attitudes that the country long ago started trying to move beyond....

  • Originally published 04/01/2013

    In Mississippi, a gray area between black and white

    CLEVELAND, Miss.—The Illinois Central railroad tracks that once separated residents, white from black, have been torn out to make way for a landscaped promenade.Cleveland's largest high school, founded in 1906 exclusively for the children of white residents, now has nearly equal numbers of black and white students.But nearly a half century after a federal judge ordered Cleveland to begin school desegregation, government attorneys have returned to court to argue the district must, once and for all, "fully dismantle its racially identifiable one-race schools," in a legal battle that is again dividing the town.Public schools east of the former railroad tracks are still virtually 100% black. Schools west of the former racial divide remain predominantly white....

  • Originally published 03/18/2013

    CPAC attendee: "Why can’t we just have segregation?"

    NATIONAL HARBOR, Maryland — A panel at the Conservative Political Action Committee on Republican minority outreach exploded into controversy on Friday afternoon, after an audience member defended slavery as good for African-Americans.The exchange occurred after an audience member from North Carolina, 30-year-old Scott Terry, asked whether Republicans could endorse races remaining separate but equal. After the presenter, K. Carl Smith of Frederick Douglass Republicans, answered by referencing a letter by Frederick Douglass forgiving his former master, the audience member said “For what? For feeding him and housing him?” Several people in the audience cheered and applauded Terry’s outburst.After the exchange, Terry muttered under his breath, “why can’t we just have segregation?” noting the Constitution’s protections for freedom of association. ...

  • Originally published 02/25/2013

    Is a House a Home in the Segregated 1950s?

    Luck of the Irish Claire Tow Theater/Lincoln Center 150 West 65th Street New York, N.Y.In the middle of the nineteenth century, Boston was the capital of the anti-slavery movement. The capital of Massachusetts was the home of several well-known abolitionist newspapers; the state was led politically by anti-slavery champions such as Senator Charles Sumner and Governor John Andrew, and the 54th Massachusetts -- the first African American regiment in the Union Army -- was mustered near the city in 1863.In the middle of the twentieth century, though, Boston was a hotbed of racism. The Boston Red Sox was one of the last teams to be integrated (Pumpsie Green in 1959) and housing in the Boston area was still segregated. The New England city had actually made enormous backward strides over the prior century.This is the backdrop for Luck of the Irish, a powerful drama about how a white couple “fronted” for a black couple so they could buy a house in the fictional Boston suburb of Billington. It was a practice known as “ghost buying” and widely used all over the country at the time.

  • Originally published 02/12/2013

    Sarah Carr: In Southern Towns, 'Segregation Academies' Are Still Going Strong

    Sarah Carr is a contributing editor at The Hechinger Report, a nonprofit, nonpartisan education-news outlet based at Teachers College, Columbia University, and author of the forthcoming book Hope Against Hope.It took LaToysha Brown 13 years to realize how little interaction she had with white peers in her Mississippi Delta town: not at church, not at school, not at anywhere.The realization dawned when she was in the seventh grade, studying the civil rights movement at an after-school program called the Sunflower County Freedom Project. It didn't bother her at first. By high school, however, Brown had started to wonder if separate could ever be equal. She attended a nearly all-black high school with dangerous sinkholes in the courtyard, spotty Internet access in the classrooms, and a shortage of textbooks all around. Brown had never been inside Indianola Academy, the private school most of the town's white teenagers attend. But she sensed that the students there had books they could take home and walkways free of sinkholes."The schools would achieve so much more if they would combine," said Brown, now age 17 and a junior.

  • Originally published 02/05/2013

    Michael Lind: The White South’s Last Defeat

    Michael Lind is the author of Land of Promise: An Economic History of the United States and co-founder of the New America Foundation. In understanding the polarization and paralysis that afflict national politics in the United States, it is a mistake to think in terms of left and right. The appropriate directions are North and South. To be specific, the long, drawn-out, agonizing identity crisis of white Southerners is having effects that reverberate throughout our federal union. The transmission mechanism is the Republican Party, an originally Northern party that has now replaced the Southern wing of the Democratic Party as the vehicle for the dwindling white Southern tribe....

  • Originally published 02/05/2013

    Bill to clear Scottsboro Boys in Ala.

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. — In 1931, Alabama wanted to execute the black Scottsboro Boys because two white women claimed they were gang-raped. Now, state officials are trying to exonerate them in a famous case from the segregated South that some consider the beginning of the modern civil rights movement.Two Democratic and two Republican legislators unveiled proposals Monday for the legislative session starting Tuesday. A resolution labels the Scottsboro Boys as “victims of a series of gross injustice” and declares them exonerated. A companion bill gives the state parole board the power to issue posthumous pardons....

  • Originally published 02/05/2013

    Thurmond’s mixed-race daughter dies

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — Essie Mae Washington-Williams, the mixed-race daughter of onetime segregationist senator Strom Thurmond who kept her parentage secret for more than 70 years, has died. She was 87.Vann Dozier of Leevy’s Funeral Home in Columbia said Washington-Williams died Sunday. A cause of death was not given.Washington-Williams was the daughter of Thurmond and his family’s black maid. The identity of her famous father was rumored for decades in political circles and the black community. She later said she kept his secret because, “He trusted me, and I respected him.”...

  • Originally published 01/22/2013

    James A. Hood, Student Who Challenged Segregation, Dies at 70

    James A. Hood, who integrated the University of Alabama in 1963 together with his fellow student Vivian Malone after Gov. George C. Wallace capitulated to the federal government in a signature moment of the civil rights movement known as the “stand in the schoolhouse door,” died on Thursday in Gadsden, Ala. He was 70.His death was confirmed by his daughter Mary Hood.On the morning of June 11, 1963, Mr. Hood and Ms. Malone, backed by a federal court order, sought to become the first blacks to successfully pursue a degree at Alabama. A black woman, Autherine Lucy, had been admitted in 1956 but was suspended three days later, ostensibly for her safety, when the university was hit by riots. She was later expelled....

History News Network