Segments in this Video

Racism in US Founding Documents (01:59)


The Declaration of Independence declared all men are created equal, but 200 years later people still struggle to interpret its meaning. Prejudice against Black people was supported by the Constitution and informed American opinion for over a century.

Emancipation Day (02:32)

Around 1900 most Black Americans were born slaves or children of slaves. Living as second class citizens, they refused to give up on on the promise of the Emancipation Proclamation and Declaration of Independence.

Heart of "Negro New York" (03:59)

January 1, 1901 Emancipation Day was celebrated; Blacks raised their glasses to Abe Lincoln and Frederick Douglas. Congressman George H. White prepared his farewell speech as fraud had ousted the last Black elected during Reconstruction.

Up from Slavery (02:44)

Congressman White left office in 1901, Twenty-eight years passed before another Black man was elected. Booker T. Washington served as a model of how a Black man could rise to the top as long as he "knew his place".

New Hero for Black Struggle (02:13)

As Booker T. Washington built Tuskegee Institute political coalitions between Blacks and White failed miserably. Rape, pillage, and murder were common but crimes against Blacks went unpunished. If the South were to recover it needed industry.

Mixed Messages in Black Struggle (05:23)

Money poured into Tuskegee Institute as Booker T. Washington traveled the country speaking about Black life in the South. His message was appealing to Whites. He became one of the biggest power brokers in the Republican party.

Jim Crow Laws (01:50)

After Plessy v. Ferguson the fate of Blacks was left up to the states. A flood of laws followed--designed to put Blacks down and keep them there. Schools, hospitals, stores and even cemeteries were segregated.

Dr. Du Bois: Higher Education (02:15)

William Du Bois was born a free man and became the first Black man to receive a doctorate from Harvard. He believed science could provide the answer to the question of race in America.

Separate and Equal (01:58)

Schools like Tuskegee, endorsed by Booker T. Washington, were supported by White America while colleges that taught intellectual pursuits were dying on the vine. Dr. Du Bois saw this as an insult against the intellect of Black America.

Tuskegee Machine (02:59)

Booker T. Washington played two different roles in America: He dined with President Roosevelt but did nothing to better the life of Blacks. Dr. Du Bois saw this as an affront to Black intellectuals.

Niagara Movement (03:34)

Black press began to question the direction of Booker T. Washington. Monroe Trotter was the biggest opponent of the Tuskegee Machine. Blacks demanded the right to vote, education, and an end to discrimination in public places.

Fight for Equality in 20th Century (06:36)

The Niagara Movement brought back the idea of open resistance and led to the NAACP and the modern civil rights struggle. Heavy weight champ Jack Johnson kept the dreams of Blacks from fading all together when he beat Jim Jeffries.

369th US Infantry (05:56)

During WWI Dr. Du Bois and NAACP urged Blacks to join the Army if they could be led by Black officers. The highly decorated "Fighting Fifteenth" were only allowed to fight for France, and went unrecognized for their valor.

"Up You Mighty Race" (04:57)

1919 was a year of celebration and tribulation. Marcus Garvey founded the Universal Negro Improvement Association. His aim was to take Blacks "home" to Africa.

Marcus' Garvey's Legacy (04:58)

Marcus Garvey attracted Blacks by the thousands. His Black Star Shipping Line was meant to bring Blacks "home" to Africa. Less than two years after the peak of his power his plan collapsed and he was convicted of fraud before being deported.

The Second American Revolution, Part 1 - Credits (01:33)

The Second American Revolution, Part 1 - Credits

For additional digital leasing and purchase options contact a media consultant at 800-257-5126
(press option 3) or

The Second American Revolution, Part 1

Part of the Series : A Walk Through the 20th Century with Bill Moyers
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $149.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $224.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $149.95



For African-Americans, the 20th century was fraught with contrasts. There was the glowing promise of equality in the nation’s charters and there was the actual bigotry that shadowed and shrank that promise. In this program, Bill Moyers is joined by a distinguished couple who have long spoken for black aspirations—Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee. Together they re-create, in dramatic dialogue and often in original settings, the world of 20th-century black America, which was, in both its highs and lows, a world filled with signposts about America itself. This episode covers the African-American struggle from 1900 to 1920. (58 minutes)

Length: 58 minutes

Item#: BVL42061

ISBN: 978-1-62102-055-4

Copyright date: ©1984

Closed Captioned

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Not available to Home Video customers.