Rosa Parks Essay

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Heather Burrus GE 375 Project Part 1 July 16, 2014 Rosa Parks Biography Rosa Louise McCauley Parks (1913 – 2005) was an African American civil rights activist and seamstress whom the U.S. Congress dubbed the “Mother of the Modern-Day Civil Rights Movement”. Parks is famous for her refusal on December 1, 1955 to obey bus driver James Blake’s demand that she relinquish her seat to a white man. Her subsequent arrest and trial for this act of civil disobedience triggered the Montgomery Bus Boycott, one of the largest and most successful mass movements against racial segregation in history, and launched Martin Luther King, Jr., one of the organizers of the boycott, to the forefront of the civil rights movement. Her role in American history earned her an iconic status in American culture, and her actions have left an enduring legacy for civil rights movements around the world. Early Life of Rosa Parks: Rosa Louise McCauley was born in Tuskegee, Alabama, on February 4, 1913. Her ancestors included both Irish-Scottish lineage and also a great grandmother who was a slave. She attended local rural schools and after the age of 11 the Industrial School for Girls in Montgomery. However, she later had to opt out of school to look after her grandmother. As a child, Rosa became aware of the segregation which was deeply embedded in Alabama. She experienced deep rooted racism, and became aware of the different opportunities faced by white and black children. She also recalls seeing a Klu Klux Klan march go past her house – where her father stood outside with a shotgun. Due to the Jim Crow laws, most black voters were effectively disenfranchised. In 1932, she married Raymond Parks, a barber from Montgomery. He was active in the NAACP and Rosa Parks became a supporter helping with fund-raising and other initiatives. She attended meetings defending the rights of black

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