African American

Student Protest at Delta State College in March 1969

Theme and Time Period
Today, legal and institutionally supported racial segregation within places of higher learning feels like a thing of the past. Yet, integration and increased representation of students of color, especially Black students, did not come easily in the Mississippi Delta even after racial segregation was outlawed.

The First Black Legislators in Mississippi

Theme and Time Period
In 2022, more than fifty African Americans were serving in the Mississippi State Legislature, carrying on the legacy of the first Black men who served there in 1870. Mississippi’s first Black legislators were farmers and lawyers, barbers and blacksmiths, teachers and ministers. Some had always known freedom, while others were born into slavery. Some were highly educated elsewhere, and others had never been taught to read because the law in Mississippi forbade it. Many came to Mississippi to help build a more just government, and many were driven out by violence only a few years later.

The Role of Lawyers in the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi

Theme and Time Period
In the early twentieth century, Black people in Mississippi who aimed to exercise their rights as citizens of the United States had few allies. State and local government officials, acting under the authority of the 1890 state constitution, blocked efforts by black citizens to vote and operated separate schools for White and Black children.

Building the Collective “voice of Negro women in Mississippi”: The National Council of Negro Women in Mississippi in the 1960s and 1970s Lesson Plan

OVERVIEW

With this article, Rebecca Tuuri introduces the history, mission, and innovative female leaders who championed the National Council of Negro Women from its inception in 1935 through its spread and successes specifically in the state of Mississippi during the 20th century. Focusing on NCNW’s efforts to unite diverse social and political organizations, Tuuri describes how the National Council for Negro Women has worked to support Black women in achieving leadership roles, promoting health and education, and achieving Black pride in Mississippi communities.

Building the Collective “voice of Negro women in Mississippi”: The National Council of Negro Women in Mississippi in the 1960s and 1970s

Theme and Time Period
In November 1966, Noel Henry, wife of prominent Clarksdale NAACP leader Aaron Henry, sent her regrets to Dorothy Height, president of the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW). Height was organizing a workshop to draw Black women leaders of all socioeconomic levels from around the state to Jackson to discuss how the NCNW could be most helpful to them.

The Citizens' Council Lesson Plan

Teaching Levels

Grades 7 through 12

Curricular Connections

Mississippi Studies

MS.8.3 - Evaluate the lasting impact of the Civil Rights Movement on Mississippi.

US History: 1877 to Present

US.3.2 - Trace the development of political, social, and cultural movements and subsequent reforms, including: Jim Crow laws, Plessy vs. Ferguson, women’s suffrage, temperance movement, Niagara movement, public education, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and Marcus Garvey.

The Citizens' Council

Theme and Time Period
In May 1954, the United States Supreme Court announced in a unanimous decision that segregation—the practice of separating Black and White students, by law, within the public school system—was unconstitutional. That decision, Brown v. Board of Education, set into motion decades of organized, White opposition in southern states that had, since the 1890s, enforced laws to ensure that Black students and White students would not attend the same schools.