Civil Rights Movement/ Early 1960s

1.The civil rights movement was a struggle by African-Americans in the mid-1950s to late 1960s to achieve civil rights equal to whites, including equal opportunity in employment, housing, and education, as well as the right to vote, the right of equal access to public facilities, and the right to be free of racial discrimination. This movement wanted to restore to African-Americans the rights of citizenship guaranteed by the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments.Leaders of the movement predicted, the movement was not only for African Americans but also for women, people with disabilities, and many others.However, with the end of Reconstruction in 1877, southern whites again took control of the South, passing a variety of laws that discriminated on the basis of race. These were called Jim Crow laws.

2.The Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham was used as a meeting-place for civil rights leaders. On Sunday, September 15, 1963, white man was seen getting out of a Chevrolet car and placing a box under the steps of the church. Soon afterwards, around 10 a.m., the bomb exploded killing Denise McNair (11), Addie Mae Collins (14), Carole Robertson (14) and Cynthia Wesley (14). The four girls had been attending Sunday school classes at the church. Twenty-three other people were also hurt by the blast.Robert Chambliss, a member of the Ku Klux Klan, was arrested and charged with murder and possessing a box of 122 sticks of dynamite without a permit.

On 8th October, 1963, Chambliss was found not guilty of murder and received a hundred-dollar fine and a six-month jail sentence for having the dynamite.In November, 1977 Chambliss was tried once again for the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing. Chambliss was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment. Chambliss died in an Alabama prison on 29th October, 1985.