By the end of this section, you will be able to:
- Identify key events in the history of African American civil rights
- Explain how the courts, Congress, and the executive branch supported the civil rights movement
- Describe the role of grassroots efforts in the civil rights movement
Many groups in U.S. history have sought recognition as equal citizens. Although each group’s efforts have been notable and important, arguably the greatest, longest, and most violent struggle was that of African Americans, whose once-inferior legal status was even written into the text of the Constitution. Their fight for freedom and equality provided the legal and moral foundation for others who sought recognition of their equality later on.