Montgomery Bus Boycott's Effect on Blacks

Air Date: 10/01/2004
Source:
NBC News
Creator:
Frank McGee
Air/Publish Date:
10/01/2004
Event Date:
12/1955-12/1956
Resource Type:
News Report
Copyright:
NBCUniversal Media, LLC.
Copyright Date:
2004
Clip Length:
00:01:13

The city of Montgomery, Alabama suffers when African American citizens boycott the city buses, in response to the arrest of Rosa Parks for refusing to give up her seat to white passengers.

Montgomery Bus Boycott's Effect on Blacks

FRANK MCGEE, Former Montgomery Television News Director, reporting: 

Montgomery was proud also of what it considered it’s good race relations, and it was not an evil city. It didn’t realize that Negroes demanding better treatment could no longer be treated as teenagers asserting their right to stay out after 9:30. And the Negroes didn’t realize their strength at first. They asked only that buses seat Negroes from the rear, whites from the front, but with no cut off lines or that once a Negro had a seat, he didn’t have to give it up to a white. Well, the city didn’t budge, it waited for the boycott to collapse or for Negro leaders to quarrel among themselves and fall out. That did not happen.

Mass meetings, not yet demonstrations, kept Negroes informed and their spirits lifted. Then came the threats. And then the white community learned that the Negro was no longer afraid. Klan meetings were held and crosses were burned, and the joke circulated that every Negro seamstress in town was working overtime, sewing up bed sheets for her white customers. The Negroes enlarged their demands, and went to the federal courts, seeking an end to all segregated seating on the busses. King’s home was dynamited, and so were others. The two communities settled down to slug it out, and the Negroes, conscious now that their struggle was being watched by the nation, won.

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