Civil Rights Movement

The Last Stand of Massive Resistance: Mississippi Public School Integration, 1970 Lesson Plan


When the U.S. Supreme Court handed down the decision in Brown vs. the Board of Education, compliance with this judicial ruling was met with much resistance in Mississippi.  Even though most Mississippi schools had integrated peacefully by the mid-1970s, the integration of Mississippi schools was a long hard-fought battle that took place between the national government and state officials. 

The Last Stand of Massive Resistance: Mississippi Public School Integration, 1970

Theme and Time Period

Mississippi public schools underwent a dramatic change in 1970. After sixteen years of delays and token desegregation after U. S. Supreme Court orders to dismantle the state’s dual school system, a steady stream of legal action by Black parents and federal intervention toppled the state’s ninety-five-year-old “separate but equal” educational system in which White school children went to one school system and Black school children went to another one.

Street Theater and the Collapse of Jim Crow Lesson Plan


In this lesson plan, students are challenged to move beyond a step-by-step recitation of events in Mississippi’s civil rights years. Rather, they are encouraged to compare the effectiveness of various techniques used in the civil rights drama, and to discover the plan and purpose underlying the acts that brought the movement to a successful climax.


Mississippi Studies Framework: Competencies 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

When Youth Protest: Student Activism and the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement, 1955-1970 Lesson Plan


Given the opportunity, most students are eager to explore and to understand the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi. Their interest will certainly be aroused by an informative study of youth involvement in the movement, an area often overlooked in a cursory review of the primary leaders and events. Students will be engaged in thinking about the following questions as they research the subject:

Medgar Evers and the Origins of the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi Lesson Plan


Anthropologist Margaret Mead once argued against the improbability of one person bringing about major changes in society. Rather, she asserted, one person’s dedication and commitment was normally the only way change would come. Few would argue that Mississippi became a vastly different state as the result of the life and work of Medgar Wiley Evers, a pioneer in the state’s Civil Rights Movement.

The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission: An Agency History

Theme and Time Period

The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission was created in March 1956 by an act of the Mississippi Legislature. It came in the wake of the May 1954 Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka public school desegregation ruling by the U. S. Supreme Court. The court ruled that laws enforcing segregated schools were unconstitutional and called for desegregation of schools “with all deliberate speed.”

On Violence and Nonviolence: The Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi

Theme and Time Period

The American Civil Rights Movement in the late 1950s and 1960s represents a pivotal event in world history. The positive changes it brought to voting and civil rights continue to be felt throughout the United States and much of the world. Although this struggle for Black equality was fought on hundreds of different “battlefields” throughout the United States, many observers at the time described the state of Mississippi as the most racist and violent.

Medgar Evers and the Origin of the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi

Theme and Time Period

Mississippi became a major theatre of struggle during the Civil Rights Movement of the mid-20th century because of its resistance to equal rights for its Black citizens. Between 1952 and 1963, Medgar Wiley Evers was perhaps the state’s most impassioned activist, orator, and visionary for change. He fought for equality and fought against brutality.

Fannie Lou Hamer: Civil Rights Activist

Theme and Time Period

When young civil rights workers arrived in Ruleville in the Mississippi Delta in 1962, they were looking for local Black people who could help convince their neighbors to register to vote. They found forty-four-year-old Fannie Lou Hamer.