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Jim Crow laws

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A bus station in Durham, North Carolina, in May 1940.

The Jim Crow laws were a number of laws of the United States. These laws were enforced in different states between 1876 and 1965. "Jim Crow" laws provided a systematic legal basis for segregating and discriminating against African-Americans. The laws first appeared after the Civil War and the Reconstruction era and were enforced through the mid twentieth century. They were about segregating black and white people in all public buildings. "Jim Crow" was a racist term for a black person. Black people were usually treated worse than white people. This segregation was also done in the army, schools, restaurants, on buses and on what jobs blacks got. In 1954, the US Supreme Court ruled that such segregation in state-run schools was against the US constitution. The decision is known as Brown v. Board of Education today. The other Jim Crow laws were abolished in the Civil Rights Act of 1964[1] and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) fought against the Jim Crow laws.


  • "Jim Crow Laws." Gale Encyclopedia of U.S. History: Government and Politics. Detroit: Gale, 2009. Student Resources In Context. Web. 7 Nov. 2013.