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Civil Rights Movement Essay

In order to understand what led to the Civil Rights Movement, we need tofirst understand what the blacks had been enduring.One could state that the civil rights movement actually started back in 1863 with the Emancipation of Proclamation abolishing slavery.During the First Reconstruction, 1865-1877, blacks tried to live a free life.The white plantation owner’s of the South could not run their plantations without the slaves helping.So, they set up a system called share-cropping.Under this plan, blacks would borrow from the local merchants against their future crops.They would go into debt so much they were unable to pay.Thus, they were stuck on the plantations, working off their debt.This crop-lien system lasted until the 1960’s.Also, in the South, blacks were still not allowed to vote.The people in South denied their right to vote by using “grandfather clauses” and literacy tests.Segregation still existed.There was also a lot of violence in the South against blacks.From 1910-1919, 57 lynchings a year took place.All of this background is important in understanding what the blacks went through during this time period.
One of the most indispensable factors of beginning the Civil Rights Movement, involved the cotton industry.The demand for cotton had decreased with the increase of synthetic fibers and imported fabrics.Also, with the increase in mechanization, the demand for plantation workers decreased.After all of these influences, 70% of sharecroppers were let go.Of these, 10 million came to the North.Of the 10 million, about half were black.Many of these people moved to urban areas.
Another important factor of the Movement, was that blacks became a “swing vote.”Politicians recognized that with blacks gaining voting rights, they could get more votes.Thus, politicians became more aware of what affected the blacks.One more factor was that in the North, blacks were getting better jo…

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