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Rosa Parks rode in ~ the prior of a Montgomery, Alabama, bus on the job the supreme Court"s half on segregation of the city"s buses take it effect. A year earlier, she had been arrested for refusing to provide up her seat ~ above a bus.

You are watching: Sitting on a bus


On a cold December evening in 1955, Rosa Parks quietly incited a revolution — by just sitting down.

She was exhausted after spending the job at job-related as a department save seamstress. She stepped ~ above the bus for the drive home and sat in the fifth row — the an initial row that the "Colored Section."

In Montgomery, Alabama, once a bus came to be full, the seat nearer the front were offered to white passengers.

Montgomery bus driver James Blake ordered Parks and also three other African americans seated nearby to move ("Move y"all, I want those two seats,") come the earlier of the bus.

Three riders complied; Parks go not.

The adhering to excerpt that what happened following is from Douglas Brinkley"s 2000 Rosa Park"s biography.

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"Are you going to was standing up?" the driver demanded. Rosa Parks looked right at him and also said: "No." Flustered, and also not rather sure what come do, Blake retorted, "Well, I"m walking to have you arrested." and also Parks, still sitting beside the window, replied softly, "You may do that."

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After Parks refused to move, she was arrested and also fined $10. The chain of occasions triggered by she arrest changed the joined States.

King, Abernathy, Boycott, and also the SCLC


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Martin Luther King Jr. To be the very first president that the Mongomery advancement Association, which organized the Montgomery bus boycott of 1955. This started a chain reaction of comparable boycotts throughout the South. In 1956, the can be fried Court voted to end segregated busing.

In 1955, a little-known minister named Martin Luther King Jr. Led the Dexter avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery.


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Henry David Thoreau"s occupational "Civil Disobedience" noted inspiration for many leaders that the Civil rights Movement.

King learned the writings and practices of Henry David Thoreau and Mohandas Gandhi. Their teaching supported civil disobedience and nonviolent resistance to society injustice.

A staunch devotee that nonviolence, King and his colleague Ralph Abernathy were a component of a community organization, the MONTGOMERY development ASSOCIATION (MIA), which arranged a boycott of Montgomery"s buses.

The requirements they made to be simple: black passengers must be treated with courtesy. Seating have to be allotted top top a first-come-first-serve basis, with white passengers sit from prior to earlier and black passengers sitting from back to front. And also African American motorists should drive routes that mainly serviced african Americans. Top top Monday, December 5, 1955 the boycott got in effect.


Don"t ride the Bus


In 1955, the Women"s political Council issued a leaflet calling for a boycott the Montgomery buses.

Don"t journey the bus to work, come town, to school, or any type of place Monday, December 5.

Another black Woman has actually been arrested and put in jail because she refused to offer up she bus seat.

Don"t journey the buses to occupational to town, to school, or any kind of where ~ above Monday. If friend work, take a cab, or share a ride, or walk.

Come to a fixed meeting, Monday in ~ 7:00 P.M. In ~ the Holt Street Baptist Church for more instruction.


Montgomery officials quit at nothing in attempting to sabotage the boycott. King and Abernathy were arrested. Violence started during the activity and ongoing after the conclusion. 4 churches — and the homes of King and also Abernathy — to be bombed. However the boycott continued.


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Together through Martin Luther King Jr., Ralph Abernathy (shown here) organized the southerly Christian management Conference and helped lead the nonviolent battle to overturn Jim crow laws.

The MIA had actually hoped because that a 50 percent assistance rate amongst African Americans. To your surprise and also delight, 99 percent of the city"s afri Americans refused to journey the buses. World walked to job-related or rode your bikes, and also carpools were established to help the elderly. The bus company suffered thousands of dollars in lost revenue.

Finally, top top November 23, 1956, the can be fried Court rule in favor of the MIA. Segregated busing was asserted unconstitutional. City officials reluctantly agreed come comply through the Court Ruling. The black community of Montgomery had held certain in their resolve.

The Montgomery bus boycott triggered a firestorm in the South. Across the region, blacks withstood "moving to the ago of the bus." similar actions flared increase in other cities. The boycott placed Martin Luther King Jr. In the nationwide spotlight. He ended up being the acknowledged leader the the nascent Civil legal rights Movement.

With Ralph Abernathy, King formed the southern Christian leadership Conference (SCLC).

This company was specialized to fighting Jim crow segregation. Afri Americans boldly claimed to the rest of the nation that their movement would be peaceful, organized, and also determined.

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To modern eyes, gaining a seat on a bus may not seem like a an excellent feat. However in 1955, sit down marked the an initial step in a revolution.