CIVIL RIGHTS CONFERENCE, JUNE 24-28, 2024

The National Archives and Records Administration and the National Park Service are partnering to host a civil rights conference to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision. The conference will include presentations by historians and civil rights leaders, as well as personal stories from those who lived it.

In person programs will be offered at three sites - the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, the Brown v Board National Historic Park, and the Clinton Presidential Library and Museum.

Registration to attend in person at the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum (6/25) and the Brown v Board National Historic Park (6/26) is now closed. Registration to attend in person at the Clinton Presidential Library and Museum (6/27, see below for details) and registration to attend virtually will both close at 12 noon on 6/26. All sessions will be streamed.

Tickets

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In addition to the sessions listed below, there is a Clinton Presidential Center Presents program on Wednesday June 26th. Learn more here.

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Thursday June 27, 2024

10:00 AM

Black Teachers Matter: The Impact of Brown v. Board of Education on Black Teachers Outside of the South

How did Brown v. Board of Education affect the number, placement, and political engagement of Black teachers during the era of school desegregation outside of the South and border states? More than 100,000 Black educators in the South lost their jobs after 1954. What happened in the North? Zoe Burkholder, PhD, seeks to shed light on the longstanding problem of teacher diversity in U.S. public schools, to document the multiple ways that Black teachers and administrators advanced racial justice in public education, and to consider the varied ways that Black communities fought to secure equitable hiring and placement for Black teachers.

Thursday June 27, 2024

12:00 PM

Hoxie: The First Stand

On July 11, 1955, 21 Black students enrolled at previously all white Hoxie schools. While not the earliest instance of desegregation in Arkansas, it was the first to be met with active resistance. Two weeks after the start of the school year, Life Magazine published an article on how well the desegregation was going. Segregationists then sought to challenge the school board's decision.
Members of the Hoxie 21 will share their personal experiences as part of a panel discussion moderated by Dr. Jay Barth, Director of the Clinton Presidential Library and Museum.

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Thursday June 27, 2024

1:30 PM

The Role of the US Marshals Service in Enforcing Brown v. Board

The desegregation of educational institutions in the American South in the 1950s and 1960s created a daunting challenge for federal law enforcement. The decision to turn to deputy U.S. marshals stemmed from a long relationship between them and the Black community. The Executive Office for U.S. Marshals, which professionalized personnel and consolidated nationwide training for civil disturbances, began in December 1956. The work was often dangerous, but the law was preserved. David S. Turk, the historian for the U.S. Marshals Service, will discuss the formation and operations through the eyes of those law enforcement officers from years of interviews and personal conversations.

Thursday June 27, 2024

6:00 PM

Landmark Cases of Racial Injustice: Scott v. Sanford and Plessy v. Ferguson

This program will examine the individuals behind the landmark Supreme Court cases that bear their names - Scott v. Sandford (1857) and Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) - and reflect on the outgoing efforts for civil rights led today by their descendants: Lynne Jackson, Keith Plessy and Phoebe Ferguson. Dred and Harriet Scott, an enslaved couple, boldly sued for freedom, leading to a Supreme Court decision that declared Black Americans could not be citizens and had no standing to sue in federal court. Homer Plessy challenged Louisiana’s segregation laws by refusing to sit in a “colored” railway car which led to the era of the “separate but equal” doctrine. The discussion will explore the impact made on the fight for racial equality by these historic figures and the work done today to affect civic activism and social justice.

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Official logo of the Bill Clinton Presidential Library and Museum
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National Archives and National Park Service Logos

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Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum logo