Explorations in Black Leadership

Co-Directed by Phyllis Leffler & Julian Bond

Freedom Rides

The Freedom Rides, sponsored by CORE, began in 1961 when seven blacks and six whites set out on public buses to test the ruling in Boynton v. Virginia declaring segregation of public transportation illegal. The riders were met with extreme violence, which brought attention to the deep racial hatreds and fear of integration. The people on the rides adopted nonviolence, but understood the possibility that they would be met with violence. The goal was to directly challenge segregation policies. President Kennedy was forced to take action against the violence across the South.