Georgia Studies Unit 7: Modern Georgia and Civil Rights Lesson 2: Segregation and Civil Rights Study Presentation Lesson 2: Segregation and Civil Rights • ESSENTIAL QUESTION: – How can the policies of state and local political leaders influence economic growth? – How can political policies and decisions create a climate in which individuals and groups can voice opinions to bring about social change? End of the White Primary • White Primary – Used, after the Civil War, to keep African Americans from voting. – 1900 Democratic Primary – Democratic leaders decided that only white Democrats could vote in the primary election. – GA was essentially a one-party state (Republican and Independent candidates got little support from white citizens). – As a result, white, Democratic candidates were often elected with little or no African American support. – End of the White Primary – King v. Chapman Supreme Court case made the white primary systems in GA unconstitutional (illegal). The 1946 Governor’s Race • Governor Ellis Arnall’s term of office was due to end in 1946. • Eugene Talmadge was elected to his 4th Term as Georgia’s Governor but died before taking the Oath of Office. • Began the “Three Governor’s” Controversy: – Herman Talmadge (Eugene’s son) was chosen as governor by the legislature due to the amount of write-in votes he had received and were “found” after the election. – Current Governor Arnall declares that Lieutenant Governor Melvin Thompson was the new Governor as he was the rightful successor. – January 15, 1947, Herman Talmadge’s men broke into the governor’s office and changed the locks and readied themselves to run the state. – Governor Arnall set up a temporary office at the Capitol Information counter; Arnall officially resigned three days later. – Finally in March 1947, the Georgia Supreme Court ruled Thompson was the governor until a special election could be held in 1948. At this election, Herman Talmadge was elected governor. Early Civil Rights in GA • Herman Talmadge – Served as governor of GA briefly in 1947 and again from 1948-1955. Later served in the U.S. Senate. – Segregationist – Worked to keep African American and white citizens separate – As a politician, Talmadge worked to help GA’s farmers and tried to stop Civil Rights. • 1956 State Flag – In 1956, GA’s state flag was changed to prominently display the Confederate Battle Flag; changed in 2001 as citizens found the flag offensive. The Supreme Court and Education • 1948: racial integration ordered in armed forces • 1950: Brown v. Board of Education – case struck down “separate but equal” concept; schools were to be integrated • Sibley Commission: found that most Georgians would rather close schools than integrate • More private schools opened • 1961: Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes first African American students at UGA • 1971: All Georgia public schools integrated Montgomery Bus Boycott • Dec. 1, 1955: Rosa Parks, African American, refused to give up her bus seat to whites in Montgomery, AL • Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the NAACP organized civic leaders and prepared marches • Supreme court ruled segregation on public transportation unconstitutional A Nonviolent Movement is Born • Benjamin Mays – President of Morehouse College; educator and mentor to Martin Luther King, Jr. of Atlanta and as a Civil Rights advocate. • Martin Luther King, Jr. developed a nonviolent approach to social change • Four-prong approach: – – – – direct, nonviolent actions legal remedies ballots economic boycotts • SCLC: Southern Christian Leadership Conference – civil rights group led by Dr. King • Sit-in: Dr. King’s strategy to people refuse to leave a public building until their demands are met The Albany Movement • 1961: Albany, GA becomes center of civil rights activity • SNCC: Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee – challenged segregated bus system in Albany • Nearly 500 people jailed • Biracial committee formed to study concerns of African Americans Protests Move to Alabama • 1963: Martin Luther King, Jr. begins work to integrate all aspects of public life in Birmingham, AL • Over 3000 people arrested • 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing – KKK sets a bomb which killed 4 black children in their church in Birmingham, Alabama • African Americans and whites from the north and south began to join together to stop the violence The Civil Rights Act • President Kennedy created new civil rights laws • Kennedy was assassinated before the new laws came into effect • Lyndon Johnson became president and pushed for passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 • All public facilities had to be integrated • Discrimination was prohibited in business and labor unions The Voting Rights Act • 1964: Freedom Summer – Martin Luther King, Jr. and SNCC worked to get African Americans registered to vote • Selma-to-Montgomery, AL march led by Dr. 7BOhGS King • Nearly 30,000 marchers • Congress passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965 – one million African Americans were registered to vote A Shift in Mood • Some people moved from the nonviolent strategies to more aggressive ones • SNCC and “Black Panthers” confronted police • Malcolm X preached black separatism • Race riots in Los Angeles, Detroit, and Newark • Lester Maddox became governor of Georgia in 1967. Had forcibly turned away black activists who challenged segregation at the restaurant he had owned. Very popular with Georgians who supported segregation. • April 1968: Dr. King assassinated in Memphis, TN while working with striking sanitation workers Atlanta: A Case Study in Change • Integration in Atlanta was relatively peaceful • Church leaders get much credit for this peaceful change • William Hartsfield: Atlanta mayor who expanded Atlanta’s airport and worked with African American and white leaders; worked to integrate Atlanta’s schools • Ivan Allen: Atlanta mayor ordered removal of “white” and “colored” segregation signs in the City Hall; integrated police and fire services and city government • Troubled times followed but were overcome • The city became known as “the city too busy to hate” African Americans Take Office • Maynard Jackson: Elected mayor of Atlanta in 1973 (1st African American mayor of a major southern city). • Andrew Young: An aide to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Executive director of the SCLC. In 1972, won election to the U.S. House of Representatives (1st African American from GA to be elected to Congress since the 1860’s).