tell me every thing you know about the jim crow law plz?

3 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Jim Crow laws were laws that imposed racial segregation. They existed mainly in the South and originated from the Black Codes that were enforced from 1865 to 1866 and from prewar segregation on railroad cars in northern cities. The laws sprouted up in the late nineteenth century after Reconstruction and lasted until the 1960s.

    Prior to the enactment of Jim Crow laws, African Americans enjoyed some of the rights granted during Reconstruction. Gains included the addition of the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments and the Civil Rights Act of 1875. However, rights dwindled after Reconstruction ended in 1877. By 1890, whites in the North and South became less supportive of civil rights and racial tensions began to flare. Additionally, several Supreme Court decisions overturned Reconstruction legislation by promoting racial segregation.

    The Supreme Court set the stage for Jim Crow laws by several of its decisions. The Court held that the Civil Rights Act of 1875 was unconstitutional and ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment did not prohibit individuals and private organizations from discriminating on the basis of race. However, it was the Supreme Court's decision in Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) that led the way to racial segregation. In 1890, Louisiana passed a law that required blacks to ride in separate railroad cars.

    Blacks protested and challenged the law. Homer Plessy, a carpenter in Louisiana who was seven-eighths Caucasian, was chosen to test the constitutionality of the law. On June 7, 1892, Plessy boarded a train and sat in a car reserved for whites. He refused to move and was arrested. A local judge ruled against Plessy and in 1896 the Supreme Court upheld the lower courts ruling. It held that "separate but equal" accommodations did not violate Plessy's rights and that the law did not stamp the "colored race with a badge of inferiority."[1] The Court provided further support for separate accommodations when it ruled in Cumming v. County Board of Education] (1899) that separate schools were valid even if comparable schools for blacks were not available.

    With the Supreme Court's approval, the Plessy decision paved the way for racial segregation. Southern states passed laws that restricted African Americans access to schools, restaurants, hospitals, and public places. Signs that said "Whites Only" or "Colored" were posted at entrances and exits, water fountains, waiting rooms, and restrooms. Laws were enacted that restricted all aspects of life and varied from state to state. Georgia in 1905, passed a law requiring separate public parks, in 1909 Mobile, Alabama created a 10 p.m. curfew for blacks, and in 1915, South Carolina blacks and whites were restricted from working together in the same rooms of textile factories.

    Here are samples of the laws enacted by various states.


    Health Care

    No person or corporation shall require any white female nurse to nurse in wards or rooms in hospitals, either public or private, in which ***** men are placed.


    All passenger stations in this state operated by any motor transportation company shall have separate waiting rooms or space and separate ticket windows for the white and colored races.

    The conductor of each passenger train is authorized and required to assign each passenger to the car or the division of the car, when it is divided by a partition, designated for the race to which such passenger belongs.



    The marriage of a person of Caucasian blood with a *****, Mongolian, Malay, or Hindu shall be null and void.



    All marriages between a white person and a *****, or between a white person and a person of ***** descent to the fourth generation inclusive, are hereby forever prohibited.

    Any ***** man and white woman, or any white man and ***** woman, who are not married to each other, who shall habitually live in and occupy in the nighttime the same room shall each be punished by imprisonment not exceeding twelve 12 months, or by fine not exceeding five hundred dollars.


    The schools for white children and the schools for ***** children shall be conducted separately.


    Health Care

    The Board of Control shall see that proper and distinct apartments are arranged for said patients, so that in no case shall Negroes and white persons be together.


    It shall be unlawful for a white person to marry anyone except a white person. Any marriage in violation of this section shall be void.

    Public Facilities

    No colored barber shall serve as a barber [to] white women or girls.

    The officer in charge shall not bury, or allow to be buried, any colored persons upon ground set apart or used for the burial of white persons.

    All persons licensed to conduct a restaurant, shall serve either white people exclusively or colored people exclusively and shall not sell to the two races within the same room or serve the two races anywhere under the same license.

    By 1915, the strength of Jim Crow laws were slowly beginning to erode. The Supreme Court in Guinn v. United States (1915) ruled that an Oklahoma law that denied the right to vote to some citizens was unconstitutional. In 1917, in Buchanan v. Warley (1917), the Court held that a Louisville, Kentucky law could not require residential segregation. Additionally, the decisions in Sweatt v. Painter (1949) and McLaurin v. Oklahoma (1950) helped break down the ruling in Plessy. But it was the Supreme Courts decision in 1954 in Brown v. Board of Education that overturned the Court's decision in Plessy. It held that separate schools were unequal and its ruling helped dismantle racial segregation. The Court provided momentum for the growing civil rights movement that eventually led to the end of racial segregation.

    At least eight southern states have kept segregationist laws and those statutes continue to influence educational policy, according to a University of Arizona, Tucson, report, "Still on the Books: Jim Crow and Segregation Laws Fifty Years After Brown v. Board of Education," which calls for legislative review and repeal of provisions in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.

    Jim Crow laws still exist in some states

    Among the old laws still present in state statutes are: the Alabama Constitution allows parents to choose to send their children to schools provided for their race only; a Georgia ordinance designed to permit teachers at segregated private schools to join desirable state pension programs; Louisiana has statutes to authorize the termination of integrated public schools as well as the payment of salaries of teachers who are imprisoned for resisting integration; Mississippi retains a precept allowing closure of neighboring public schools if they are integrated; Missouri law refers to a separatist reform school for "Negroes"; South Carolina authorizes tuition grants for students in segregated public schools; Virginia retains provisions allowing suspension of compulsory education laws if schools are integrated; and a West Virginia statute limits the number of African-Americans hired as public school supervisors.

    Although some of the identified laws no longer are enforced or have been held unconstitutional in the courts, the statutes continue to have effects. Some former teachers at segregated private schools currently are receiving public pensions while segregated private schools continue to benefit from donations of real property by the states

    • Login to reply the answers
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    They were supposed to battle racism by offering separate but equal facilities. Things was, the places they were enforced the facilities were anything but equal and certainly separate.

    • Login to reply the answers
  • 1 decade ago
    • Login to reply the answers
Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.