James Forman (1928-2005) studied at Roosevelt University in Chicago. He holds a master`s degree from Cornell University and a Ph.D. from the Union Institute. An order from the Chicago Defender to report on desegregation at Central High School in Little Rock sparked Forman`s interest in the nascent civil rights movement. He was involved in CORE and the NAACP and became executive secretary of SNCC in 1961. From 1967 to 1969, Forman served as director of SNCC`s International Affairs Commission and was instrumental in bringing SNCC`s activities closer to other civil rights organizations and national and international recognition. Forman continued to devote the rest of his life to human rights issues. On November 27, President Johnson addressed a joint session of Congress to call for the “earliest possible passage” of the Civil Rights Act in honor of President Kennedy. Two days later, he met with Roy Wilkins at the White House to ask Wilkins and other civil rights leaders to vigorously lobby and mobilize public support for the bill. On December 8, Johnson invited Joseph Rauh, a persistent critic, aboard Air Force One to accompany him to the funeral of New York Senator Herbert Lehman.

Shortly thereafter, they met at the White House to discuss the Judiciary Committee bill and strategy for the upcoming battles in Congress. “What greater weapon of peace do we have than our victory over the fanaticism and racial hatred that have torn the world apart for many centuries. His ingenious legal strategy was to end school segregation by debunking the belief that institutions for blacks were “separate but equal” for the lie they were. Houston`s smart strategy worked, effectively paving the way for desegregation. On September 15, 1963, the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, was bombed, killing four African-American girls during their Sunday school classes. In response to the attack and the recent march on Washington for jobs and freedom, liberal members of the House Judiciary Subcommittee, which was responsible for drafting the civil rights bill, strengthened the bill the Kennedy administration sent to Congress in June, much to the chagrin of those who thought it could not pass now. In this excerpt from CBS Reports: Filibuster – Birth Struggle of a Law, aired on March 18, 1964, Wisconsin Representative Robert W. Kastenmeier (1924-2015), Wisconsin Democrat, and William M. McCulloch (1901-1980), Ohio Republican, and Attorney General Robert Kennedy (1925-1968) the revised bill. In 1956, Rosa Parks toured the United States, speaking on behalf of the bus boycott and the NAACP.

In the spring, she flew to Detroit, Seattle, Los Angeles, Oakland, Chicago and Indianapolis before spending two weeks in New York. There, she spoke at a civil rights rally and fundraiser at Madison Square Garden and met Roy Wilkins, Thurgood Marshall and A. Philip Randolph. She left New York to speak at the NAACP`s annual convention in San Francisco. After a summer break in Montgomery, Parks resumed her tour as a speaker at a September mass convention in Baltimore, hosted by Lillie Jackson, president of the NAACP chapter and mother-in-law of Clarence Mitchell. In 1962, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) launched a voter registration drive in Greenwood, Mississippi, the county seat of Leflore County, which was more than two-thirds black, but only five percent of the African-American voting-age population was registered. African-American poverty in the region was widespread and threatened to intensify, as Bob Moses (born 1935), the SNCC chief in Mississippi, notes in this excerpt from the documentary The Streets of Greenwood (1964). SNCC organizers in Greenwood were gunned down and arrested because the city was the state seat for the White Citizens Council, which Moses also talks about.

In February 1952, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR) held a meeting in Washington to discuss Senate Rule XXII on closure, a process used by Southern senators to block civil rights laws from debate through filibusters. In 1952, rule XXII required a two-thirds majority of the entire Senate to invoke closure to stop a filibuster. The senators had also liberalized Article XXII by submitting “any measure, motion or other matter” for closure. At the beginning of each new Congress, the LCCR advocated a revision of Rule XXII to reduce barriers to the passage of civil rights laws. Joseph Rauh was the chief strategist of LCCR campaigns under Rule XXII. Civil rights activist Joyce Ladner (born 1943) discusses black youth in the South in the postwar movement in an interview conducted by Joseph Mosnier (born 1962) for the Civil Rights History Project in 2011. House Judicial Subcommittee No. 5 held public hearings on the Civil Rights Act from May 8 to August 2, 1963. In September, the subcommittee passed a bill that meets all the demands of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR). Attorney General Robert Kennedy appeared before the entire Judiciary Committee on Oct. 15 to call for a more “sensible” bill. The Kennedy administration was convinced that the subcommittee`s bill might not get enough Republican votes to pass the House of Representatives.

The NAACP and LCCR refused to back down. President Kennedy intervened directly by summoning bipartisan leaders to the White House on October 23. After five days of negotiations, they agreed to support a bipartisan compromise project. The Judiciary Committee formally reported on the bill on November 20. Roy Wilkins (1901-1981), Executive Secretary of the NAACP, spoke on the 28th. In August 1963, he marched to Washington for jobs and freedom at the Lincoln Memorial over upcoming civil rights laws. John F. Kennedy (1917-1963) was born in Brookline, Massachusetts. He graduated from Harvard College in 1940. He was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1947 to 1953 and a U.S. Senator from Massachusetts from 1953 to 1960.

As a Democratic presidential candidate in 1960, Kennedy supported his party`s commitment to a strong civil rights agenda. He won 70% of the black vote in a close election, defeating his opponent Richard Nixon. Patsy T. Mink`s handwritten notes for a speech in support of the Civil Rights Commission at the Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles. Envelope, July 12, 1960. Page 2. Patsy T. Mink Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress (114.00.00) Used with permission from Gwendolyn Mink. For NBC`s The American Revolution of `63, aired on 2. In September 1963, white supremacist W.

J. Simmons (1916-2007), head of the Jackson, Mississippi-based Council of Citizens of America, gave his assessment of the civil rights “revolution.” The Albany movement was founded in 1961 in Albany, Georgia, as a collaboration between local activists, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). It was the first major initiative of the civil rights movement, which sought to desecrate an entire city. In this excerpt from CBS News Eyewitness: The Albany Movement, aired on August 3, 1962, teenage protesters are arrested for singing and praying outside the public library — SNCC`s Freedom Singers are part of that movement — and SCLC Executive Director Rev.