At the forefront of a new era in American history, Briggs v. Elliott was one of the five school-segregation lawsuits argued consecutively before the U.S. Supreme Court in 1952. The genesis of Briggs was in 1947, when the black community of Clarendon County, South Carolina, took action against the abysmally poor educational services provided for their children. In a move that would define him as an early champion for civil rights justice, Joseph A. De Laine, pastor and school principal, led his neighbors to challenge South Carolina's "separate but equal" practice of racial segregation in public schools. In this engrossing memoir, Ophelia De Laine Gona, the daughter of Reverend De Laine, becomes the first to cite and adequately credit the forces responsible for filing Briggs. Based on Reverend De Laine's writings and papers, witness testimonies, and the author's personal knowledge, Gona's memoir fills a gap in civil rights history by providing a poignant insider's view of the events and personalities-including NAACP attorney Thurgood Marshall and federal district judge J. Waties Waring-central to this trailblazing case.
An inspirational biography of an unsung civil rights champion from South Carolina
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