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In the end, black residents of Montgomery continued the boycott for days. Dozens of public buses stood idle for months, severely damaging the bus transit company's finances, until the city repealed its law requiring segregation on public buses following the US Supreme Court ruling in Browder v. Gayle that it was unconstitutional.
Parks was not included as a plaintiff in the Browder decision because the attorney Fred Gray concluded the courts would perceive they were attempting to circumvent her prosecution on her charges working their way through the Alabama state court system. Parks played an important part in raising international awareness of the plight of African Americans and the civil rights struggle. King wrote in his book Stride Toward Freedom that Parks' arrest was the catalyst rather than the cause of the protest: "The cause lay deep in the record of similar injustices. Parks unless he realizes that eventually the cup of endurance runs over, and the human personality cries out, 'I can take it no longer.
After her arrest, Parks became an icon of the Civil Rights Movement but suffered hardships as a result. Due to economic sanctions used against activists, she lost her job at the department store.
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Her husband quit his job after his boss forbade him to talk about his wife or the legal case. Parks traveled and spoke extensively about the issues. She also disagreed with King and other leaders of Montgomery's struggling civil rights movement about how to proceed, and was constantly receiving death threats. Later that year, at the urging of her brother and sister-in-law in Detroit , Sylvester and Daisy McCauley, Rosa and Raymond Parks and her mother moved north to join them.
The City of Detroit attempted to cultivate a progressive reputation, but Parks encountered numerous signs of discrimination against African-Americans. Schools were effectively segregated, and services in black neighborhoods substandard. In , Parks told an interviewer that, "I don't feel a great deal of difference here Housing segregation is just as bad, and it seems more noticeable in the larger cities. Parks rendered crucial assistance in the first campaign for Congress by John Conyers. She persuaded Martin Luther King who was generally reluctant to endorse local candidates to appear with Conyers, thereby boosting the novice candidate's profile.
She held this position until she retired in There was only one Rosa Parks. She visited schools, hospitals, senior citizen facilities, and other community meetings and kept Conyers grounded in community concerns and activism. Parks participated in activism nationally during the mids, traveling to support the Selma-to-Montgomery Marches , the Freedom Now Party,  and the Lowndes County Freedom Organization. She also befriended Malcolm X , who she regarded as a personal hero.
Like many Detroit blacks, Parks remained particularly concerned about housing issues. She herself lived in a neighborhood, Virginia Park, which had been compromised by highway construction and urban renewal. By , these policies had destroyed 10, structures in Detroit, displacing 43, people, 70 percent of them African-American.
Parks lived just a mile from the epicenter of the riot that took place in Detroit in , and she considered housing discrimination a major factor that provoked the disorder. In the aftermath Parks collaborated with members of the League of Revolutionary Black Workers and the Republic of New Afrika in raising awareness of police abuse during the conflict. She served on a "people's tribunal" on August 30, , investigating the killing of three young men by police during the Detroit uprising, in what came to be known as the Algiers Motel incident. The council facilitated the building of the only black-owned shopping center in the country.
She also supported and visited the Black Panther school in Oakland. In the s, Parks organized for the freedom of political prisoners in the United States, particularly cases involving issues of self-defense. The s were a decade of loss for Parks in her personal life. Her family was plagued with illness; she and her husband had suffered stomach ulcers for years and both required hospitalization.
In spite of her fame and constant speaking engagements, Parks was not a wealthy woman. She donated most of the money from speaking to civil rights causes, and lived on her staff salary and her husband's pension. Medical bills and time missed from work caused financial strain that required her to accept assistance from church groups and admirers. Her husband died of throat cancer on August 19, , and her brother, her only sibling, died of cancer that November. Her personal ordeals caused her to become removed from the civil rights movement. She learned from a newspaper of the death of Fannie Lou Hamer , once a close friend.
Parks suffered two broken bones in a fall on an icy sidewalk, an injury which caused considerable and recurring pain. She decided to move with her mother into an apartment for senior citizens. There she nursed her mother Leona through the final stages of cancer and geriatric dementia until she died in at the age of In , Parks—widowed and without immediate family—rededicated herself to civil rights and educational organizations.
She co-founded the Rosa L. Parks Scholarship Foundation for college-bound high school seniors,   to which she donated most of her speaker fees. In February she co-founded, with Elaine Eason Steele, the Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute for Self Development , an institute that runs the "Pathways to Freedom" bus tours which introduce young people to important civil rights and Underground Railroad sites throughout the country.
Parks also served on the Board of Advocates of Planned Parenthood. In , Parks published Rosa Parks: My Story , an autobiography aimed at younger readers, which recounts her life leading to her decision to keep her seat on the bus.
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A few years later, she published Quiet Strength , her memoir, which focuses on her faith. At age 81 Parks was robbed and assaulted in her home in central Detroit on August 30, The assailant, Joseph Skipper, broke down the door but claimed he had chased away an intruder. He requested a reward and when Parks paid him, he demanded more. Parks refused and he attacked her. Hurt and badly shaken, Parks called a friend, who called the police.
A neighborhood manhunt led to Skipper's capture and reported beating. Parks was treated at Detroit Receiving Hospital for facial injuries and swelling on the right side of her face. Parks said about the attack on her by the African-American man, "Many gains have been made But as you can see, at this time we still have a long way to go. Suffering anxiety upon returning to her small central Detroit house following the ordeal, Parks moved into Riverfront Towers , a secure high-rise apartment building. Learning of Parks' move, Little Caesars owner Mike Ilitch offered to pay for her housing expenses for as long as necessary.
Louis , for cleanup which allowed them to have signs stating that this section of highway was maintained by the organization. Since the state could not refuse the KKK's sponsorship, the Missouri legislature voted to name the highway section the "Rosa Parks Highway". When asked how she felt about this honor, she is reported to have commented, "It is always nice to be thought of.
In Parks filmed a cameo appearance for the television series Touched by an Angel. Parks was incapable of managing her own financial affairs by this time due to age-related physical and mental decline. When her rent became delinquent and her impending eviction was highly publicized in , executives of the ownership company announced they had forgiven the back rent and would allow Parks, by then 91 and in extremely poor health, to live rent-free in the building for the remainder of her life.
Her heirs and various interest organizations alleged at the time that her financial affairs had been mismanaged. In Rosa's Detroit house was disassembled, moved to Berlin , and partly restored. Parks died of natural causes on October 24, , at the age of 92, in her apartment on the east side of Detroit. She and her husband never had children and she outlived her only sibling. She was survived by her sister-in-law Raymond's sister , 13 nieces and nephews and their families, and several cousins, most of them residents of Michigan or Alabama. City officials in Montgomery and Detroit announced on October 27, , that the front seats of their city buses would be reserved with black ribbons in honor of Parks until her funeral.
Parks' coffin was flown to Montgomery and taken in a horse-drawn hearse to the St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal AME church, where she lay in repose at the altar on October 29, , dressed in the uniform of a church deaconess. A memorial service was held there the following morning. One of the speakers, United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice , said that if it had not been for Parks, she would probably have never become the Secretary of State.
In the evening the casket was transported to Washington, D. Since the founding of the practice in , Parks was the 31st person, the first American who had not been a U. She was the first woman and the second black person to lie in honor in the Capitol. With her body and casket returned to Detroit, for two days, Parks lay in repose at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. Her funeral service was seven hours long and was held on November 2, , at the Greater Grace Temple Church in Detroit. After the service, an honor guard from the Michigan National Guard laid the U.
As the hearse passed the thousands of people who were viewing the procession, many clapped, cheered loudly and released white balloons. Parks was interred between her husband and mother at Detroit's Woodlawn Cemetery in the chapel's mausoleum. The chapel was renamed the Rosa L. Parks Freedom Chapel in her honor. Parks, wife, —. By placing her statue in the heart of the nation's Capitol, we commemorate her work for a more perfect union, and we commit ourselves to continue to struggle for justice for every American.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. African-American civil rights activist. For other uses, see Rosa Parks disambiguation. Tuskegee , Alabama , U. Detroit , Michigan , U. Raymond Parks m. Rosa Parks' arrest.
Fingerprint card of Parks. Main article: Montgomery bus boycott. African American portal Indigenous peoples of the Americas portal Biography portal. Racism in the United States Timeline of the civil rights movement. Odom of Mississippi, an escaped slave who lived through the years of Reconstruction and segregation. Retrieved November 13, The quoted passages can be seen by clicking through to the text or PDF. Democracy Now! Pacifica Radio. Retrieved April 18, Archived from the original on Retrieved February 5, June 13, Chapter excerpted on the site of the New York Times.
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Jackson, Miss. Penguin Books. Basic Books. Rosa Parks: My Story. Dial Books.
The Birth of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Charro Press. UNC Press. Jim Crow ". Reporting Civil Rights: American journalism, — His second volume, published by Fuel and featuring a foreword by Owen Hatherley , is dedicated to Ukraine, Georgia and Russia. For this latest book Herwig sought to find the most unusual bus stops in the deepest reaches of the countryside.
And he did not disappoint: the bus stops here range from magnificently produced propaganda, celebrating the achievements of the Soviet state, to the patrioric St George slaying the dragon in the village of Rostovanovskoye in Russia is well worth a gander , to the fantastically mundane that makes you ask — what is a giant lighbulb doing in the middle of the Russian countryside?