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The Civil Rights Movement

January 12, 1998

Imagine that soldiers are standing guard to keep you from going to school. Then imagine that soldiers are called in help you enter your school. That's just what happened 40 years ago when nine black students wanted to attend Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas. It was a crucial moment in the American civil rights movement, led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. And it was one of the events that eventually helped bring greater equality for African Americans. To learn more about the civil rights movement, use the direct links on The Times Launch Point Web site:

Here are the best sites for getting your schoolwork done or for just having fun.


Martin Luther King Jr. Day on the Net: Why do we have a holiday on the third Monday of January? Find out about the achievements of Martin Luther King Jr. and why we remember them.

Timeline of the American Civil Rights Movement: What is the civil rights movement? View photographs that capture the drama of such events as the 1960 sit-in campaigns that began after an African American college student, Joseph McNeill, was denied service at a Woolworth's lunch counter. McNeill's actions inspired students across the nation to organize protests.

The Dr. King Timeline Page: Learn about the life of Martin Luther King Jr. through drawings by Buckman Elementary School students.


Seattle Times--Martin Luther King Jr.: A comprehensive collection of resources. Take a journey through the history of U.S. civil rights issues beginning with the Brown vs. Board of Education decision in 1954 and continuing to the 1992 Los Angeles riots. Hear excerpts from the famous "I Have a Dream" speech that Martin Luther King Jr. gave at the Lincoln Memorial in 1963.

National Civil Rights Museum--Virtual Tour: A guide to the most significant moments of the civil rights era. Find out about the 1960s freedom rides, the march on Washington and voter registration campaigns.

The Civil Rights Movement--A Black History Celebration: Play the Martin Luther King Trivia Game. Read ninth-graders' essays and poems about the civil rights movement as well as current perspectives on racism.


The Martin Luther King Jr. Directory: An assortment of documents written by and about the civil rights leader. Includes articles, biographies, timelines and other reference materials.

Civil Rights Movement and Martin Luther King: An account of Martin Luther King Jr.'s role in the civil rights movement. Read about his philosophy of nonviolence and how Mohandas Gandhi, Henry David Thoreau and others influenced his views.

1963 Man of the Year--Martin Luther King Jr.: Get a glimpse into the life of Martin Luther King Jr. through this article written in January 1964 at the height of the civil rights movement. That same year he would receive the Nobel Peace Prize at the age of 35, the youngest age that anyone has received that award. time/special/moy/1963.html

Launch Point is produced by the UC Irvine department of education, which reviews each site for appropriateness and quality. Even so, parents should supervise their children's use of the Internet. This week's column was designed by Sylvia Kim, Christa Wemmer, Hilary Leavitt, Stan Woo-Sam and Anna Manring.


The answer to this Internet quiz can be found in the sites at right.

Who was arrested in 1955 for refusing to give up a bus seat for a white passenger?

Clue: See Timeline of the American Civil Rights Movement

Tell Us What You Want To Know

Got a paper or project coming up? Just curious about something? Send us a topic, and we'll consider it for a future Launch Point column. Write to us at The Times Orange County, 1375 Sunflower Ave., Costa Mesa, CA 92626. E-mail us at or leave a phone message at (714) 966-4550.

Answer to last week's Quest:

Ancient Egyptians used gold to decorate funeral objects.

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