Summer 1946

The Negro Citizens Committee conducted a voter registration campaign to open the Democratic Party primary to blacks. The committee organized teams of prospective black voters in Columbia to register including George Elmore, an entrepreneur and political activist. He successfully sued the Democratic Party in Elmore v. Rice and won the… Read More

August 13, 1946

Black voters, including George Elmore, attempted to vote in the August primary but were turned away by Democratic Party officials. Harold Boulware, the head of the state conference legal committee, filed a class action lawsuit, Elmore v. Rice, on this date. Read More

October 20-22, 1946

Southern Negro Youth Congress met in Columbia at the Township Auditorium and on the campuses of Benedict College and Allen University. Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois and Paul Robeson were among the national leaders who addressed the delegation. Read More

November 5, 1946

After half an hour of deliberation, an all-white federal jury in Columbia found Batesburg sheriff Lynwood Shull not-guilty of beating African American World War II Army veteran Isaac Woodard. Judge J. Waties Waring condemned the jury’s decision. Shull had beaten Woodard after arresting him on a bus in… Read More

1947 – 1950

The campaign to challenge “separate but equal” education began in Clarendon County, South Carolina.  The filing of Briggs v. Elliott (1951) would go on to be one of the five cases that made up the landmark Brown v. Board of Education (1954) Supreme Court case. Read More

July 7, 1947

Judge J. Waties Waring ruled in the case of Elmore v. Rice that the South Carolina Democratic Party could not keep African Americans from voting in the primary. In his comments, he declared, “it is time for South Carolina to rejoin the Union.”… Read More

July 12, 1947

Aided by the NAACP, John Wrighten sues to integrate the law school at the University of South Carolina. Rather than permit him to enter UofSC, the state of South Carolina funded the creation of a separate law school at segregated South Carolina State College. Read More

June 1948

At its annual convention, the PDP elected twenty-eight delegates to take its case for black inclusion as party members to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania that summer. Read More

July 15, 1948

After leading an exodus of “States’ Rights” Democrats from the Democratic National Convention floor in Philadelphia, Gov. Strom Thurmond addressed the first convention of Dixiecrats in Birmingham. He declared that there were “not enough troops in the Army to force the southern people to break down segregation and… Read More

July 16, 1948

Exasperated with the Democratic Party’s continued refusal to abide by the Elmore ruling, Judge Waring issues an injunction mandating that the state Democratic Party open its membership rolls and allow all parties, without regard to “race, color, creed, or condition,” to participate in the August primary. Before the… Read More