Segments in this Video

Racial Inequality in the South (03:18)


In 1940, the south still had strict Jim Crow laws and black education was struggling at poorly funded segregated schools. Buses, restrooms, and water fountains were segregated.

Black Soldiers in WWII (06:07)

Thousands of black soldiers enlisted in the segregated armed forces. Black soldiers proved their ability to fight and challenged the racial stereotypes of white soldiers. Many black soldiers experienced the racial equality in France.

Black Veterans in the South (05:47)

Black soldiers returned to a newly urbanized south, where segregation and Jim Crow laws were still present. Veterans were angry that they did not have the rights they had fought to protect. They realized white political leaders needed to be replaced.

Black Voter Suppression (06:32)

White supremacists used fear and terror to stop black people from voting. The Ku Klux Klan targeted registered voters and those helping with voter registration. John Wesley Dobbs and the Black Masons in Georgia encouraged more black people to vote.

Racial Violence in Georgia (07:09)

White supremacy candidates in Georgia were fueling racial tension in rural areas. A group of KKK members killed two black men and two pregnant black women.

Aftermath of Georgia Murders (04:29)

Two witnesses to the murders were intimidated to remain quiet. The FBI investigated the murders, but no one was ever charged. President Harry S. Truman became the first president to address the NAACP.

Civil Rights in Politics (04:49)

Truman adopted a civil rights platform after realizing leaving it to the states was not working. Segregationist Strum Thurmond ran against Truman in protest. Truman signed a bill desegregating the armed forces.

Steps Toward Integration (08:39)

Sports and media became more integrated in the late 1940s. Segregation on interstate trains and buses became illegal. Students at the black high school in Farmville, Virginia went on strike because of poor conditions compared to the white school.

End of School Segregation (05:46)

The NAACP went to Farmville to help families deal with the aftermath of the student strike. They took the legal case, which followed the series of cases aimed at ending school segregation. The case was combined with others and became part of Brown v. Board of Education, which ended separate but equal education.

Credits: Terror and Triumph (1940-1954) (02:03)

Credits: Terror and Triumph (1940-1954)

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Terror and Triumph (1940-1954)

Part of the Series : The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



Terror and Triumph examines the surge of black activism that took place after World War II. Black veterans returned from the war determined to achieve the same rights at home that they had fought for in Europe in a Jim Crow army. One vet, Medgar Evers, became an organizer for the Mississippi NAACP; he was assassinated for his work in 1963. In Georgia, John Wesley Dobbs, head of the Black Masons, organized the first voter-registration drives. Predictably, whites again answered black demands for equality with violence. But this time, President Truman responded with a civil rights initiative and integrated the Army. Southern Democrats split from the Democratic Party, forming the States Rights Party. But slowly the national mood was changing. Barriers fell in sports and entertainment. Here, for the first time on film, those who had been high school students in Farmville, Virginia, reconstruct their historic walk-out and protest against segregated and inadequate education. They galvanized the community to join in an NAACP lawsuit that was combined with four other NAACP suits across the country to become Brown v. Board of Education. The landmark Brown decision irreparably breached the legal basis for Jim Crow, and through that opening soon poured the legions of the Civil Rights Movement.

Length: 57 minutes

Item#: BVL165994

Copyright date: ©2002

Closed Captioned

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