Games Learning Resources Visit the Museum
America on the Move
Collection Exhibition Themes
Freedom Riders stopped in Anniston, Alabama
Currently on display
Not a part of the official Smithsonian Collection
In 1961, the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) sent two small integrated groups out to test to see if long distance buses and their terminals were desegregated. When they traveled into Alabama, the Freedom Riders were attacked and badly beaten, and CORE called the ride off. Other Civil Rights activists-many of them young members of the Student NonViolent Coordinating Committee-rushed to Alabama to continue the ride. They ran into trouble in Montgomery, Alabama, and the federal government had to send in U.S. marshals to protect the riders. The Freedom Rides continued into Mississippi, where they met with more resistance. By late August, 1961, more than 400 Freedom Riders had been arressted by the state of Mississippi. Images like this one of the burned bus, helped create sympathy for the non-violent Freedom Riders and their cause.
Physical Description
Date Made:
After the Civil Rights movement had won the legal battles that declared segregation was against the nation's law during the mid 1950s, the movement began to push to make sure that schools and public accomodations, including transportation systems, were actually desegregated. In the late 1950s, in the face of massive resistance, activists tried to integrate the schools in the wake of the Brown v. Board of Education decision. In the early 1960s, supporters of Civil Rights and integration marched, organized Freedom Rides, and students began a sit-in movement to force desegregation of lunch counters and other public places. These often-sucessful activities helped challenged segregation in the South.

National Museum of American History About This Site | Sponsors | Buy the Book | E-mail Signup | Credits