The Stormy Sixties In Rural America, Watts Riot And Civil Rights Act '64

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Manage episode 180929303 series 1456791
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In the 1960s the modern Civil Rights Movement was in full swing again. This era is approximately one hundred years after the end of the Civil War and society has realized that in these hundred years, not enough has changed. Vehement leaders are enraged by the segregation and unequal treatment of African Americans and pushed for change. This feeling was shared by many, including whites, who pushed for change and legislation so that equality could finally be reached. The movement consisted of marches, sit ins, peaceful and violent protests, riots, and eventual legislation in 1964 and 1965. On August 11th, 1965 after there is an altercation between a black motorcyclist and white policemen, a violent and destructive riot broke out in the black Watts neighborhood in Los Angeles, California. The riot lasted five days and was ended by the national guard leaving 34 dead and $40 million in damage. In 1964 Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act, which ended segregation and discrimination based on race, sex, religion, or ethnicity. This legislation was a major achievement for the Civil Rights Movement and its leaders, including Doctor Martin Luther King Junior and Malcom X. In 1965 the Voting Rights Act was also passed, ensuring that African Americans could vote free of literacy tests. Cheryl "Cherie" Higley Rohrer was born and raised in the Village of Estella in extremely rural Northeastern Pennsylvania. Mrs. Rohrer grew up in this rural area as the youngest of four children. She grew up in a full household because when her mother's (Alfreda Carpenter Higley) parents passed, her mother took on the responsibility of raising her siblings as well. This region is among the most rural and least populated in the state. For example, the nearest hospital was approximately an hour away and the nearest "real" supermarket was approximately the same distance away as well. This region was mainly agricultural consisting of a small collection of family-run farms, most of which are still there today. In addition to being mainly agricultural, a mountain in the area, Bear Mountain, was sometimes used for logging. Overall the population was minute and consisted entirely by Caucasians, because at this time the majority of the African American population lived in large cities, as opposed to small towns. Due to this lack of a diverse population the Civil Rights Movement and its effects vastly differed from urban America.

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