Jim crow laws and plessy v ferguson

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jim crow laws and plessy v ferguson

Plessy v. Ferguson: Race and Inequality in Jim Crow America by Williamjames Hull Hoffer

Six decades before Rosa Parks boarded her fateful bus, another traveler in the Deep South tried to strike a blow against racial discrimination--but ultimately fell short of that goal, leading to the Supreme Courts landmark 1896 decision in Plessy v. Ferguson. Now Williamjames Hull Hoffer vividly details the origins, litigation, opinions, and aftermath of this notorious case.

In response to the passage of the Louisiana Separate Car Act of 1890, which prescribed equal but separate accommodations on public transportation, a group called the Committee of Citizens decided to challenge its constitutionality. At a pre-selected time and place, Homer Plessy, on behalf of the committee, boarded a train car set aside for whites, announced his non-white racial identity, and was immediately arrested. The legal deliberations that followed eventually led to the Courts 7-1 decision in Plessy, which upheld both the Louisiana statute and the states police powers. It also helped create a Jim Crow system that would last deep into the twentieth century, until Brown v. Board of Education in 1954 and other cases helped overturn it.

Hoffers readable study synthesizes past work on this landmark case, while also shedding new light on its proceedings and often-neglected historical contexts. From the streets of New Orleans Faubourg Trem district to the justices chambers at the Supreme Court, he breathes new life into the opposing forces, dissecting their arguments to clarify one of the most important, controversial, and socially revealing cases in American law. He particularly focuses on Justice Henry Billings Browns ruling that the statutes equal, but separate condition was a sufficient constitutional standard for equality, and on Justice John Marshall Harlans classic dissent, in which he stated, Our Constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among its citizens.

Hoffers compelling reconstruction illuminates the controversies and impact of Plessy v. Ferguson for a new generation of students and other interested readers. It also pays tribute to a group of little known heroes from the Deep South who failed to hold back the tide of racial segregation but nevertheless laid the groundwork for a less divided America.
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Plessy v. Ferguson - Separate but Equal OK'd by High Court!

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A Jim Crow school in Kentucky. The Plessy v. Ferguson case. The "separate but equal" principle. The spread of Jim Crow laws. A segregated scene in Memphis, Tennessee. Jim Crow laws were ended in the s and s.

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Jim Crow Laws and Racial Segregation in America - The Civil Rights Movement

Plessy v. Ferguson , U. The decision involved a case that originated in when Homer Plessy, an " octoroon " person of seven-eighths white and one-eighth black ancestry resident of New Orleans , deliberately violated Louisiana's Separate Car Act of , which required "equal, but separate" train car accommodations for white and non-white passengers. Upon being charged, Plessy's lawyers defended him by arguing that the law was unconstitutional. He lost at trial, and his conviction was affirmed on his appeal to the Louisiana Supreme Court. Plessy then appealed to the U. Supreme Court, which agreed to hear his case.

Plessy v. Ferguson was a landmark U. The case stemmed from an incident in which African-American train passenger Homer Plessy refused to sit in a car for blacks. As a result, restrictive Jim Crow legislation and separate public accommodations based on race became commonplace. After the Compromise of led to the withdrawal of federal troops from the South, Democrats consolidated control of state legislatures throughout the region, effectively marking the end of Reconstruction. Southern blacks saw the promise of equality under the law embodied by the 13th Amendment , 14th Amendment and 15th Amendment to the Constitution receding quickly, and a return to disenfranchisement and other disadvantages, as white supremacy reasserted itself across the South.


  1. Zak B. says:

    During Reconstruction, the federal government expanded the vote to blacks in the South, and provided some equal protection to black citizens.

  2. Didiane G. says:

    On this date in , the Supreme Court upheld Plessy v.

  3. Caucasfile says:

    Poetry Corner

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