December 20

December 20, 1956 –  Montgomery Bus Boycott Ends

Rosa Parks (detail)

Rosa Parks with Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. in the background. 1955

The 381 day Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott ended on December 20, 1956. The boycott started on December 5, 1955, four days after Rosa Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her seat to a white rider on a bus in Montgomery. The Montgomery Bus Boycott was a major civil rights boycott in the United States. African Americans boycotted the bus system in Montgomery to protest the segregated buses. The leadership of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. in this protest aided in propelling him into the national spotlight. Montgomery was forced by the Supreme Court to integrate it’s bus system. When Rosa Parks “The First Lady of Civil Rights” kept her seat on that bus, she stood up for the dignity and civil rights of every African American in the United States.

Rosa parks bus

The bus on which Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat sparking the Montgomery Bus Boycot.

Her very patriotic and brave act was a symbol of the Montgomery Bus Boycott and civil rights demonstrations around the country. Her arrest for refusing the bus drivers demand to give up her seat on the bus to a white person helped initiate support for the cause of eliminating segregation.  Parks at the time was secretary of the Montgomery Chapter of the NAACP, but she acted that day on her own. Rosa Parks was born on February 4, 1913 in Tuskegee, Alabama and died on October 24, 2005 in Detroit, Michigan at age 92.