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tion of the school. Two board members were attacked physically, with the result that one sustained a deep cut that required stitches and the other was hospitalized for nine days with a brain concussion.25

A number of instances have been reported in which school boards have announced desegregation plans and then been forced by community pressures to reverse themselves.26 Milford, Del., and Greenbrier County, W. Va., Negro children, after being admitted to school, were forced by community pressure to withdraw. School board members and school officials were forced to resign in Little Rock and in Milton, Del.

The School Superintendent of Nashville, Tenn., presented the following summary to the Commission at its Nashville Conference.

Since Nashville began to grapple with the problem of desegregation, our most able Superintendent has retired in broken health, his eyesight greatly impaired by pernicious anemia. He was old enough to retire, but he should have been able to retire in good health. The Chairman of our Board of Education, a truly great lady, has suffered a severe heart attack, from which she cannot be expected ever fully to recover, and has had to resign from the Board of Education a year before the expiration of her term of office; and the Chairman of the Instruction Committee, who probably felt more heavily than anyone else the weight of this tremendous problem, has died. Many others among us, including principals, teachers, and other Board members, have suffered in lesser ways, but the memory of long hours of labor, followed by almost sleepless nights, disturbed and harassed by insults and threats by mail, by telephone and in person, remind us that it has not been easy or pleasant.**

In Greensboro, N.C., there were anonymous letters and telephone calls, products were delivered to the School Superintendent that he had not ordered, a cross was burned in his yard, and on four occasions missiles were thrown through his front window.28

The story with which the nation is most familiar is that of the greatly disturbed city of Little Rock, Ark. It contains all of the elements of the abuse, all the tribulations to which school board members have been exposed. The details may be found in the testimony of the Superintendent and other school officials as set forth in the 1958 opinions of the Federal District Court and the Court of Appeals.29 The back drop for this harassment is given in the petition of Little Rock's Board for certiorari to the Supreme Court of the State:

27

The legislative, executive, and judicial departments of the State government opposed the desegregation of the Little Rock schools, by enacting laws, calling

25 S.S.N., Sept. 15, 1958, p. 15.
23 E.g. Sheridan, Ark. ; Milton, Del.; Chattanooga, Tenn.

Nashville Conference, p. 86. 2 Id, at 107, 108.

> Aaron v. Cooper, 163 F. Supp. 13 (E.D, Ark., 1958), rev'd, 257 F. 2d 33 (8th Cir.

80

out troops, making statements vilifying Federal law and Federal courts, and failing to utilize State law enforcement agencies and judicial processes to maintain public peace. $

Mr. Virgil T. Blossom, the former Superintendent of Schools in Little Rock, has recently related some of these disturbing events."

Strong leadership by school officials is necessary to the success of a desegregation program. But these officials cannot be left to stand alone. Where State and local government officials and law enforcement bodies stand firmly with the school authorities and make it clear to all that the law must be obeyed and the public peace kept, a relatively smooth transition has usually been effected.

30 Cooper v. Aaron, 358 U.S. 1, 15 (1958). H It Has Happened Here, Harper and Bros., 1959.

CHAPTER IX. AN EVALUATION OF THE PAST AND APPRAISAL OF

THE FUTURE

THE RECORD TO DATE

In the five years since the Supreme Court decision, programs to eliminate racial discrimination in public schools have been started in eleven segregating States and the District of Columbia. These States include eight classified in Chapter III as States in which the adjustment was expected to be easiest because of the comparatively small proportion of Negroes in the population. The other three are States in which a higher percentage of Negroes indicated greater difficulty. Five of the six States in which no action occurred were classified in Chapter III as States in which the adjustment to a nondiscriminatory system would be the most difficult, and the sixth was considered to be only slightly less difficult.

As a quantitative measure, a school district rather than the State is the significant yardstick. School districts may differ in area proportionately as much as Rhode Island differs from Alaska, and in population as much as Nevada differs from New York. Nevertheless, school districts are the agents of the States that operate public schools and, therefore, are the appropriate units for appraising the status of schools.

In the 17 segregating states there are reported to be 8692 school districts, 2907 of which have both white and Negro pupils. Ninetyfive percent of the school districts having pupils of only one race are located in Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas-states characterized by a multiplicity of small school districts, some of them with only one school, and a proportionately small Negro population concentrated in one part of the State. Not all of the 5785 districts enrolling only one race are white districts; some are Negro. Although the school districting system in many States is by county units ? or by county and

2 city units, districting without regard to political subdivisions is a complicating problem in some States.

Table 18, on the following page, shows the desegregation record to May, 1959.

This table shows that some action to implement the Supreme Court decision has been taken in all of the biracial school districts of Maryland and West Virginia, in almost 90 percent of them in Oklahoma and Missouri, and in 70 percent in Kentucky. In Delaware 25 percent and in Texas 17 percent of the biracial school districts have

1 E.g., 125 Texas ; 12 in Arkansas ; 39 in Delaware. Both Missouri and Oklahoma have such districts but the exact number is not known.

2 E.g., Maryland and West Virginia. 3 E.g., Kentucky and Tennessee.

TABLE 18.-Progress in desegregation of school districts, 1954-591

Number of districts newly desegregated in the school year

beginning September

Total num

Number

having
both white
and Negro

pupils
1958-59

Number
Total de desegregated Number
segregated, by court segregated,
May 1959 order May 1959

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0
1

2

2
13

ONO

1
1

0
9
14
1

0

0

2

0

0

0
0
37

113
423
97

1
67
200
215
67
24
151
3, 600

172
1, 469

107

152
1, 650
129
55

113
228
57

1
67
198
175
67
23
151
243
172
271
107
141
722
128
43

0
0
71

0
11

0
40

O NOOOONO

2
0

1

0
114

0

113
219
43

0
67
198
52
67

0
151

33
168

33
107
138
598
124

0

0
2

0
39

0
124
0
1
73

0
13

0
70
0
1
48
0
5

0
16

3
22
0
1

0
2 123

0
3 23

0
211

4
238

0

3
124

4
43

1
22
0
0
1
4
0

1

1

2
0
4

0

0
22

3

4

8,692

2, 907

248

797

26

2, 111

ber of
school
districts,
1958-59

Alabama
Arkansas.
Delaware
District of Columbia.
Florida.
Georgia.
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maryland.
Mississippi.
Missouri.
North Carolina
Oklahoma.
South Carolina.
Tennessee.
Texas..
Virginia
West Virginia.

Total..
Number acting under court order, by years.

154 42

297 33

61 79

37 19

1 The figures for total number of school districts and number having both white and
Negro pupils taken from S.E.R.S. Statistical Study, October, 1958, and S.S.N., May
1959, p. 1. Number of school districts desegregating each year since 1954 are from S.E.
R.S. and various issues of S.S.N., except for the States of Delaware, Kentucky, and
Maryland where data come from Commission questionnaires and official state reports.
Due to consolidation, the total number of school districts in Delaware, Georgia, Ken-
tucky, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas has diminished, causing a reduction in the
number of biracial districts. An increase in districts in North Carolina and Tennessee
has caused an increase in biracial districts. Since there is no indication of which dis-
tricts were consolidated, the changes cannot be reflected in the Table.

2 Includes 18 districts that have adopted a desegregation policy but have had no
applications for transfor. Nine districts have no Negro pupils in the year 1958–59.

3 Includes 8 districts that have adopted a desegregation policy but have enrolled
no Negroes in a formerly white school. One denied an application for transfer because
the applicant's residence was closer to the Negro school.

* Delaware: Gebhart v. Belton, 91 A. 2d 137 (1952).

• Kentucky: Willis v. Walker, 136 F. Supp. 177 (W. D. Ky. 1955). West Virginia:
Dunn v. Bd. of Education, Civ. No. 1693, S. D. W. Va., Jan. 3, 1956, 1 Race Rel. L.
Rep. 319 (1956); Taylor v. Bd. of Education, Civ. No. 159, S. D. W. Va., Jan. 10, 1956,
1 Race Rel. L. Rep. 321 (1956).

* Tennessee: McSwain v. Bd. of Education, 138 F. Supp. 570 (M. D. Tonn. 1956).
Texas: Jackson v. Rawdon, Civ. No. 3152, N. D. Tex., Aug. 27, 1956, 1 Race Rel. L.

Rep. 884 (1956). West Virginia: Anderson v. Bd. of Education, Civ. No. 437, S. D,
W. Va., Dec. 29, 1955, 1 Race Rel L. Rep. 892 (1956); Shedd v. Bd. of Education, Civ.
No. 833, S. D. W. Va., April 11, 1956, 1 Race Rel. L. Rep. 521 (1956).

· Arkansas: Aaron v. Cooper, 143 F. Supp. 855 (E. D. Ark. 1956). Kentucky; Gordon
v. Collins, Cly. No. 720, W. D. Ky., Jan. 15, 1957,2 Race Rel. L. Rep. 304 (1957); Garnett
v. Oakley, Civ. No. 721, W. D. Ky., Jan. 23, 1957,2 Race Rel. L. Rep. 303 (1957); Mitchell
v. Pollock, Civ. No. 708, W. D. Ky., Feb. 8, 1957, 2 Race Rel. L. Rep. 305 (1957); Dish-
man v. Archer, Civ. No. 1213, E. D. Ky., Jan. 17, 1957, 2 Race Rel. L. Rep. 597 (1957).
Maryland: Moore v. Bd. of Education, 152 F. Supp. 114 (D. Md. 1957), af'd. sub. nom.;
Slade v. Board, 252 F. 2d 291 (1958). Oklahoma: Carr v. Cole, Civ. No. 7355, W. D.
Okla., Jan. 23, 1957, 2 Race Rel. L, Rep. 316 (1957); Brown v. Long, Civ. No. 4245, E, D.
Okla., Sept. 21, 1957, 3 Race Rel. L. Rep. 11 (1958). Tennessee: Kelley v. Bd. of Educa-
tion, Civ. No. 2094, M. D. Tenn., Jan. 21, 1957, 2 Race Rel. L. Rep. 21 (1957).

& Kentucky: Wilburn v. Holland, 155 F. Supp. 419 (W. D. Ky, 1957); Grimes v.
Smith, Civ. No. 167, E. D. Ky., Feb. 20, 1958, 3 Race Rel. L. Rep. 454 (1958). Mary.
land: Groveg v. Bd. of Education, 164 F. Supp. 621 (D. Md. 1958). Oklahoma: Simms
v. Hudson, Civ. No. 4246, E. D. Okla., Nov. 14, 1957, 3 Race Rel. L. Rep. 12 (1958);
Jefferson v. McCart, Civ. No. 4532, E. D. Okla., Oct. 10, 1958, 3 Race Rel. L. Rep. 1154
(1958). Virginia: School Board of Norfolk v. Beckett, 260 F. 2d 18 (4th Cir. 1958);
Hamm v. County School Board, 263 F. 2d 226 (1959); Kilby v. County School Board,
Civ. No. 530, W. D. Va., Oct. 9, 1958, 3 Race Rel. L. Rep. 973 (1958); Jones v. School
Board, Civ. No. 1770, E. D. Va., Feb. 6, 1959, 4 Race Rel. L. Rep. 29 (1959).

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