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Voting Rights Act of 1965: an introduction

Voting Rights: An Introduction to Federal Voting Rights Laws   Introduction To Federal Voting Rights Laws The Voting Rights Act, adopted initially in 1965 and extended in 1970, 1975, and 1982, is generally considered the most successful piece of civil rights legislation ever adopted by the United States Congress. The Act codifies and effectuates the… Continue Reading »

Civil Rights Act of 1964

In the 1960s, Americans who knew only the potential of “equal protection of the laws” expected the president, the Congress, and the courts to fulfill the promise of the 14th Amendment. In response, all three branches of the federal government–as well as the public at large–debated a fundamental constitutional question: Does the Constitution’s prohibition of denying equal protection always ban the use of racial, ethnic, or gender criteria in an attempt to bring social justice and social benefits? Continue Reading »

Randolph, A. Phillip

A. Philip Randolph: Founder of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters and Chair of the Committee that Organized the 1963 “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom”Continue Reading »

Rustin, Bayard (1912-1987)

Bayard Rustin: Trade Union and Civil Rights Organizer and ActivistContinue Reading »

Garrett, Mary Elizabeth (1854 – 1915)

Mary Garrett and the “Friday Evening” group next turned their attention on ways to provide opportunities for women at the Johns Hopkins University. The women of the “Friday Evening” formed the Women’s Medical School Fund Committee in response to a nation-wide appeal for philanthropic assistance initiated by University president D.C. Gilman. Proposing to raise $100,000 for the endowment of the medical school if the trustees would agree to admit women on the same terms as men, the committee embarked upon a major public relations effort to promote medical education for women. When they finished, the Johns Hopkins University—and medical education in the United States—would never be the same.Continue Reading »

Willard, Frances Elizabeth Caroline (1839-1898)

Frances Willard promoted the cause of women and reform as a pioneer educator and especially as the most prominent leader of the nineteenth century movement to end alcohol abuse.

One of the most influential women of the nineteenth century, Frances Willard’s name is inseparable from that of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU), but her life embodied little of the conservatism that came to be associated with the WCTU after her death.Continue Reading »

Barrett, Janie Porter (1865 – 1948)

Janie Porter Barrett (1865 -1948): Founder of the Locust Street Social Settlement (1890) and the Virginia Industrial School for Colored Girls (1915)Continue Reading »

Twilight, Alexander (1795 – 1857)

For the next twelve years he learned reading, writing and math skills while performing various farming duties. He was able to save enough (probably with some assistance from the farmer for whom he labored) to enroll in Randolph’s Orange County Grammar School in 1815 at the age of 20. During the next six years (1815-1821) he completed not only the secondary school courses but also the first two years of a college level curriculum. Following his graduation from Randolph he was accepted at Middlebury College, entering as a junior in August of 1821. Two years later he received his bachelor’s degree. Middlebury College claims him to be the first African-American to earn a baccalaureate degree from an American college or university.Continue Reading »

Pinchback, Pinckney Benton Stewart: (1837-1921)

Before ascending to the office of governor, Pinchback had run for both a U.S Senate seat and a seat in the U.S. Congress simultaneously in 1872. He won both contests but was barred from taking his congressional post when his opponent contested the election and was awarded the position. Pinchback was denied his seat in the senate as well as a result of charges of election fraud.Continue Reading »

Howe, Julia Ward (1819 – 1910)

Julia Ward Howe was inspired to write “ The Battle Hymn of the Republic” after she and her husband visited Washington, D.C. and met Abraham Lincoln at the White House in November 1861. During the trip, her friend James Freeman Clarke suggested she write new words to the song “John Brown’s Body,” which she did on November 19.‪ The song was set to William Steffe’s already-existing music and Howe’s version was first published in the Atlantic Monthly in February 1862. It quickly became one of the most popular songs of the Union during the American Civil War.Continue Reading »

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