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Rosa Parks
Born: February 04, 1913 in Tuskegee, Alabama, United States
Died: October 24, 2005 in Detroit, Michigan, United States
Other Names: Parks, Rosa Louise Lee; McCauley, Rosa Louise; Parks, Rosa L.; Parks, Rosa Lee McCauley; Parks, Rosa Louise McCauley; Parks, Rosa Louise; McCauley, Rosa
Nationality: American
Occupation: Civil rights activist
First Facts About American Heroes. David C. King. Woodbridge, CT: Blackbirch Press, 1996.
Full Text: COPYRIGHT 1995 Blackbirch Press, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning
Full Text: 

Civil Rights Worker.

In Montgomery, Alabama, as in all areas of the South, African Americans were expected to obey the laws of segregation, to be separated from white people. On public buses, that meant taking a back seat—or no seat, if a white person entered and the bus was full. On December 1, 1955, a bus driver ordered a seamstress named Rosa Parks to give up her seat to a white man. When she refused, she was arrested and fined.

The matter might have stopped there. But Parks agreed to let the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) fight her case in court. They argued that segregated seats deprived Rosa Parks of her basic constitutional rights. At the same time, leaders asked Montgomery’s African Americans to boycott, or refuse to ride, the city buses. Week after week, the buses were nearly empty, even though people were threatened by angry crowds of white segregationists. After 382 days, the boycott ended when the Supreme Court agreed that segregated seats were in fact unconstitutional. The idea of peaceful resistance to segregation rapidly spread throughout the South. Through her brave act, Parks helped launch the modern civil rights movement.

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Quiet Heroes

The Montgomery bus boycott and other civil rights actions succeeded because thousands of African Americans were willing to risk danger by resisting the segregation laws. Like Parks, they did not want to be heroes; instead, they quietly stood up for their rights.

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Mother of a Movement

Rosa Parks lost her job because of her courageous action. That did not deter her, however. After the Montgomery bus boycott ended, she moved to Detroit, Michigan. She is sometimes called “the mother of the civil rights movement.” Parks continued to work for civil rights for many years, but always stayed in the background.

Her action triggered the Montgomery bus boycott, a key event in the civil rights movement. Became a symbol of peaceful resistance to racial segregation.
Source Citation   (MLA 8th Edition)
King, David C. "Rosa Parks." First Facts About American Heroes, Blackbirch Press, 1996. Kids InfoBits, Accessed 18 Feb. 2020.

Gale Document Number: GALE|VGHPZH841147409