may 4, 1961 - Original 13 Freedom Riders left Washington D.C.


The Freedom Riders were white and African American civil rights activists. They took bus trips through the American South in 1961, and protested segregated bus terminals. They used facilities for white people such as "white-only" restrooms and lunch counters. They were confronted by police and suffered from violence. However, through this, they drew international attention to their cause.

The original 13 Freedom Riders left Washington D.C. on a Greyhound Bus on the 4th of May and planned to travel to New Orleans by the 17th. On the 14th, they arrived in Anniston, Alabama. They were chased by a mob who threw a bomb into the bus and were beaten by members of the mob.
The members of the second bus suffered just as much. They were also beaten by a white mob, many of who had metal pipes.

Photos of the bus and the members of the bus were published in newspapers nationally and around the world, and international attention was drawn to the cause of the Freedom Riders'.

The rides continued over the next few months of 1961. Finally, in Dember of 1961, the Interstate Commerce Commission issued regulations prohibiting 'segregation in interstate transit terminals'.

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may 4, 1961
~ 57 years ago
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