For this week in Black History Year, we are going to uncover a famous black politician who impacted the civil rights era and our society to this day. Today we’re going to talk about Lawyer Thurgood Marshall.
Thurgood Marshall was born July 2, 1908, in Baltimore, Maryland. In his childhood, Marshall’s father liked to listen to court cases at the local courthouse and discuss them with his sons.
Marshall attended Baltimore’s Colored High and Training School and here he joined the debate team. As a punishment, he had to remember the entire constitution because he was such a trouble maker in school. After high school, he went to attend Lincoln University and after that, he was rejected from Maryland Law School because of his race. This determined Marshall even more to make a change. After rejection, he went on to attend Howard Law School. He graduated Magna cum laude.
In 1934, Marshall began working for the NAACP. He moved to New York City to work full time as a legal counsel for the NAACP. For many years he won many cases to strike down racism and this helped prompt the civil rights movement. He won many cases like Chambers v. Florida in which 4 black men were forced to confess a murder by the police. The greatest achievement was Brown v. Board of Education in which ended racial segregation in public schools and made it unconstitutional. When John F Kennedy became president he made Marshall a Judge for the U.S Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Lyndon B Johnson then nominated Marshall to be the on the supreme court. He took on cases like Roe V. Wade and Furman V. Georgia.
Marshall then died on January 24, 1993, at the age of 84. People may say that King or Malcolm X was one of the most important figures in the Civil Rights Era, but Thurgood Marshall has a strong case for being one of the most important figures during this time. Not only did he set the pathway for fighting against racial discrimination, but he also set the pathway for black politicians who aspire to be like him.
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