Civil Rights Movement Photographs
Keep Your Eyes on the Prize,
Hold On! Hold On!

Mary McLeod Bethune NCNW
picketing Peoples drugstore, 1940s.


In the Shadow of the Capitol

CORE members set out from Washington on the first
Freedom Ride, the Journey of Reconciliation, April 9, 1947.


Paul Robeson and Civil Rights Congress supporters present the "We Charge Genocide" petition to the United Nations, December 17, 1951.


Ban the Klan!

Journey of Reconciliation: departing Washington, April 1947.
L-R: Worth Randle, Wallace Nelson, Ernest Bromley, James Peck, Igal Roodenko,
Bayard Rustin, Joseph Felmet, George Houser, and Andrew Johnson.

Montgomery Bus Boycott


Septima Clark and Rosa Parks at Highlander Folk School just before the Montgomery Bus Boycott, 1955.


Rosa Parks, arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus, December, 1955.


Mass meeting at Holt Street Baptist Church calls for a bus boycott, December, 1955.

Marin Luther King Addressing the Holt Mass Meeting
(His first civil rights speech.)


Walking for freedom.

Waiting for rides at a carpool pickup point.

Ministers & leaders arrested for boycotting (l-r):
Rev. Ralph Abernathy, 1st Baptist; Rev. Garer; Rufus Lewis, Citizens Committee; Rev. Leroy Bennett, Interdenominational Council; Rev. W.F. Alford, Beulah Baptist; Rev. J.H. Cherry, Jericho AME; Rev. H.H. Herbert, Bethel Baptist; Unidentified.


Dr. King arrested for boycotting the busses, Montgomery, 1956.


My feet is tired, but my soul is rested.


Rosa Parks sitting at the front of desegregated bus, Montgomery, 1956. (John Seigenthaler seated behind her.)


Reunion at Highlander after the boycott. From left: Ralph Helstein, Myles Horton, Rosa Parks, unidentified, Septima Clark.


Removing bus segregation notices after Supreme Court victory, 1956.

Billboards showing Dr. King and Rosa Parks attending an integrated event at the Highlander Folk School in 1957 are erected across the South. To the white power structure, integration is a "Communist plot" against the "Southern way of life." Therefore, anyone attending an integrated event is — by definition — a "Communist."


Autherine Lucy vs University of Alabama


Autherine Lucy and NAACP attorneys Thurgood Marshall and Arthur Shore outside Federal Court in Birmingham during her struggle to integrate the University of Alabama. February, 1956.

A white mob is mobilized to block her admission.

"Kill her! Kill her!"


Orangeburg, South Carolina, 1956


South Carolina State College students on hunger strike to protest raciscm, 1956.


Freedom march by Claflin and South Carolina State College students, 1956.


Equipment used to monitor police brutality and suppression of civil rights, Movement office, Orangeburg, SC.


Prayer Pilgrimage to DC for Civil Rights

1957 Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom


1959 "Pilgrimage of Prayer" from Richmond, VA to Washington, DC to protest the closing of public schools in Virginia to avoid court-ordered desegregation.


1950s Sit-Ins & Boycotts


Picketing the Royal Ice Cream parlor, Durham, NC. 1957. See Royal Ice Cream Sit-in for background.


A lone counter-picket tries to stem the freedom tide.


First Oklahomna sit-in, at Katz Drugstore, 1958


Clara Luper, Oklahoma NAACP and sit-in leader.


Boycotting white-owned stores on Dryades Street, New Orleans. 1959



Fayette County Tennessee, tent city for Black farmers thrown off their land for trying to register to vote (1959-1963).


Citizenship Schools


Teaching, training, educating, organizing, — the hard work behind the headlines.


Citzenship program founder Septima Clark teaches a man how to write his name, Camden Alabama, 1966


Septima Clark teaching reading, writing, voter registration, and social revolution at a Citizenship School in the South Carolina Sea Islands (date of photo unknown). Standing in the background is Citizenship School teacher and dedicated organizer Bernice Robinson.

SCLC Education Director, Dorothy Cotton teaching women in Camden AL, 1966



National Council of Negro Women (NCNW)
San Francisco chapter (1950s?)


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