"From Brown to Brown: Topeka's Civil Rights Story" Bus Tours Now Available
This new bus tour maps out locations in the city linked to local and national struggles for freedom and equality. Bus tours will be available Saturday, May 25, 2013 and June 1, 2013. Click on More for complete details of the tour. More »
2013 Teacher Ranger Teacher Opportunity
During the summer of 2013, the national NPS office of history and civics is seeking a Teacher Ranger Teacher to develop lesson plans that incorporate information about the National Park Service that meet common core standards, located in Topeka, Kansas. More »
History & Culture
The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education (1954) is one of the most pivotal opinions ever rendered by that body. This landmark decision highlights the U.S. Supreme Court’s role in affecting changes in national and social policy. Often when people think of the case, they remember a little girl whose parents sued so that she could attend an all-white school in her neighborhood. In reality, the story of Brown v. Board of Education is far more complex.
In December, 1952, the U.S. Supreme Court had on its docket cases from Kansas, Delaware, the District of Columbia, South Carolina, and Virginia, all of which challenged the constitutionality of racial segregation in public schools. The U.S. Supreme Court had consolidated these five cases under one name, Oliver Brown et al. v. the Board of Education of Topeka. One of the justices later explained that the U.S. Supreme Court felt it was better to have representative cases from different parts of the country. They decided to put Brown first “so that the whole question would not smack of being a purely Southern one.” (For more information on each of the five cases, click on the highlighted state's name above.)
This collection of cases was the culmination of years of legal groundwork laid by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in its work to end segregation. None of the cases would have been possible without individuals who were courageous enough to take a stand against the segregated system.
More information can also be found in the site's official handbook. Click here to access the handbook online.
African American Experience Fund
The mission of the African American Experience Fund of the National Park Foundation is to preserve African American history by supporting education programs in National Parks that celebrate African American history and culture.
There are 21 National Parks identified by the African American Experience Fund:
African Burial Ground National Monument, New York
Did You Know?
The national strategy to use the courts to challenge segregation in public education began with the NAACP under the leadership of attorney Charles Hamilton Houston in the 1930’s.--Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site More...