Pioneers of The Civil Rights Movement

Carter G. Woodson
Carter G. Woodson | Source
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. | Source
Rosa Parks
Rosa Parks | Source

Negro History Week to Black History Month

Black History Month went through several name changes before it reached its destination. The roles that African Americans played through out history were ignored. Dr. Carter G. Woodson founded the publication "The Journal of Negro History," the aim was to educate and preserve the African American heritage.

Negro History and Literature Week was founded by Omega Psi Phi in 1920. Six years later, Woodson changed the name to Negro History Week. With due thought, he began to think of a month to give honor to those who paved the way, some giving up their lives.

February was his choice, he could give honor to the two men who changed history for the future of African Americans. President Abraham Lincoln, responsible for the Emancipation Proclamation; freeing all slaves, born February 12th. Fredrick Douglass, an abolitionist, born February 14th. At the same time pay tribute to the pioneers who paved the way.

After his death in 1950, Woodson's legacy lived on. Negro History Week was changed to Black History Week. In 1976, it changed to Black History Month, just as Woodson wanted and is celebrated through out the nation.

The Civil Rights Movement

What was The Civil Rights Movement about? It was about an African American woman who refused to stand up and move to the back of a bus in order for a white man to sit down. The bus driver called the police and Rosa Parks was arrested. The Montgomery Bus Boycott began and lasted 382 days. No African American would ride a public transportation bus, they would walk or use a cab.

The time had come for Rosa's trial, she showed up with Fred Grey as her attorney. During the boycott, came strong resistance and some segregationists retaliated with violence. Rosa and her husband experienced hardships in the months to come. They both lost their jobs and were forced to move.

The Montgomery Improvement Association was formed by a group of leaders from the community to discuss strategies of the boycott, the meeting was held at the Mt. Zion Church. They needed fresh, strong leadership and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. just moved to the area and he was elected as minister of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church and was asked to be their leader in The Civil Rights Movement.

The city of Montgomery after losing much money, lifted the law of segregation on the buses. It wasn't over, plans were in the works for a peaceful demonstration that would shock the world. On August 28, 1963, the historic march on Washington was a nonviolent and peaceful march to the Lincoln Memorial, more than 200,000 came to listen to the "I Have a Dream" speech.






The Time Line of The Civil Rights Movement

The time line of of The Civil Rights Movement was 1955 to 1965. Many accomplishments took place during this time. Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, The Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the 14th Amendment signed by President Lydon B. Johnson.

Martin Luther King, Jr. was all about The Civil Rights Movement and with his leadership, a peaceful end would come to racial discrimination, an end to segregation. King believed that all men are created equal, no matter the race, color or nationality. African Americans should have the same rights as anyone else. The Civil Rights Movement would put an end to inhumane and unequal treatment for all African Americans.

Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on Mya Angelou's birthday, April 4, 1968. The were great friends, shared many of the same values. Maya stopped celebrating her birthday for many years but she would send flowers to Coretta Scott King, Martin's widow every year until she died in 2006.

I Have a Dream Speech

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Add Comments Here 4 comments

Alberic O profile image

Alberic O 3 years ago from Any Clime, Any Place

This not about which party pushed for civil rights more. Without these guys, civil rights probably won't exist. Good article.


bodylevive profile image

bodylevive 3 years ago from Loachapoka, Alabama Author

Hello Alberic O,

Thanks for your compliment on my article. You are so correct, the movement had nothing to do with parties but it had everything to do with racial discrimination and to put an end to racial segregation, that all men are created equal; justice for all and to put an end to the inhumane treatment of African Americans.


cmoneyspinner1tf profile image

cmoneyspinner1tf 3 years ago from Austin, Texas

Mr. Woodson has a face that reflects meekness and sober thinking. I like to look at pictures and try to guess a person's personality.


bodylevive profile image

bodylevive 3 years ago from Loachapoka, Alabama Author

cmoneyspinner1tf , thanks for stopping by. You read him right and he was all about his business. He payed tribute to the pioneers who paved the way and set Black History month. A great man.

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