Did You Know? Three Decades in the Civil Rights Movement: From 1941 to 1972
As we countdown to Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Monday Jan. 19) we thought we’d present some Did You Know? facts about the Civil Rights Movement. Here are the first 3 in our week long look at the civil rights struggle.
1) Did you know that in 1941 President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed an executive order banning discrimination by government defense contractors? This order marked the first time in history that the U.S. federal government acknowledged and acted against racial discrimination in hiring practices. It also marked the beginning of a series of national, state and grassroots actions, which changed the face of race relations in America forever.
2) Did you know that in 1946 President Harry S. Truman created the President’s Committee on Civil Rights, which was the first time the federal government had acknowledged racial discrimination as a national problem? In that same year, the U.S. Supreme Court banned racial discrimination on interstate buses.
3) Did you know that the first Freedom Ride took place in 1947? Organized by CORE, the Congress of Racial Equality, Freedom Riders were black passengers traveling on buses throughout the South as a test of the Supreme Court decision banning segregation on interstate travel. Also in 1947, Jackie Robinson became the first black major league athlete when he was hired by the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team.
Stop by again tomorrow for our continuing look at the past 60 years of the civil rights movement and our countdown to Martin Luther King, J. Day.
And for those who don’t want to wait here is our full list of Did You Know? facts about the civil rights movement.