This site represents an entry-point for Boston school desegregation archival resources - a place for educators, students, activists, researchers, and anyone with a general interest to begin investigating primary sources related to 35 plus years of work around school desegregation in the city. These sources explore the history of desegregation in Boston beginning with the Brown v. Board of Education decision in 1954 through to the Morgan v. Hennigan case in 1974.
"It's not the bus, It's us." - Jesse Jackson
Often times school desegregation in Boston is identified with the backlash over busing as a remedy to racial inequities in the Boston Public Schools. This backlash is most certainly reflected across our reflections, such as in anti-busing chants distributed at protests or angry letters written to federal judge W. Arthur Garrity. At the same time, school desegregation was much more than busing alone, as reflected in the decision itself. In these collections you will also find, for example, information about Civil Rights activism leading up to desegregation, the role of Latinos and advocacy for bilingual education, the hard work of parents and students in the implementation of desegregation, and the reflections of participants years later.
Discover the many ways of exploring and accessing these materials through our Using the Collection page. To immediately begin searching the Boston Public Schools Desegregation Collection materials, search in the Digital Public Library of America search widget to the right.