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Civil Rights Movement in America (1950's and 1960's): Home

This guide provides resources that will enable you to critically examine the African-American's turbulent struggle for civil rights in 20th century America.

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 American Civil Rights Movement of the 50'ss/60's

The convergence of several processes contributed to the emergence of the Movement:  1.  the number of Black Americans in Congress was growing, 2. advocacy groups, like the NAACP, complemented the efforts of the black members of Congress, 3. Martin Luther King, Jr. and  Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC ) spearheaded a campaign of non-violent protest, and 4.  everyday Americans, from all walks of life, formed the core of the Movement.

Accessing Resources: Where Do I Start?

Students will be able to identify and locate a variety of resources by utilizing the library's online catalog and digital databases.

The 411 on Research

When performing research, you will come across a variety of information from a variety of different  places. All of these sources can be classified as either primary or secondary sources. 

  • Primary Source: Official record of an event that is written, recorded or created by people present at it.
    • Examples - Original published results of a clinical trial, research study or scientific experiment. Live interviews, transcripts or recordings. Diaries, letters, first-person accounts.  Photographs, maps, creative works  from a time period.  Social Media tweets, texts, status updates, original blogs or Reddit AMAs.
  • Secondary Source: Interpretation or analysis of data, a study or report. A second-hand account of an  event.
    • Examples - Criticisms and reviews; magazine articles; newspaper articles; Pins on Pinterest, re-tweets, shared posts or links to other content.

Understanding the source of the information you are researching can help you make an informed decision on the authority of the person presenting it.

U.S Civil Rights Movement (1950's/1960's)

Through nonviolent protest, the civil rights movement of the 1950s and '60s broke the pattern of public facilities' being segregated by “race” and achieved the most important breakthrough in equal-rights legislation for African Americans since the Reconstruction period (1865–77) [Britannica.com]