Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1954)
An African-American girl, Linda Carol Brown, was not allowed to attend a school four blocks from her house because it was for white students. Instead, she had to walk twenty-one blocks to the nearest all-black school. In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court reversed the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson decision saying that separate but equal is inherently unequal. In a follow up case one year later, the Court stated that local school systems should develop their own plans for desegregation to take effect "with all deliberate speed."
Copyright © 1997 Jonathan Chin & Alan Stern