Columbia in the 1960s: The State House and Public Protestedit
South Carolinians found themselves at a major crossroads during the 1960s. In rural towns and cities across the state, African Americans and white supporters waged public protests, filed lawsuits, and registered voters. On March 2, 1961, 187 protesters were arrested following a planned demonstration on the South Carolina State House grounds. A lawsuit filed on their behalf–Edwards v. South Carolina— reached the United States Supreme Court. On February 25, 1963, the court ruled that the 14th Amendment forbids a state “to make criminal the peaceful expression of unpopular views,” and helped demonstrations nationwide.