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Arkansas National Guard Prevent School Desegregation - 1957  | Today in History | 4 Sept 16
Arkansas National Guard Prevent School Desegregation - 1957 | Today in History | 4 Sept 16
Published: 2016/09/04
Channel: British Movietone
Little Rock, Arkansas High School Integration 221300-10.mp4 | Footage Farm
Little Rock, Arkansas High School Integration 221300-10.mp4 | Footage Farm
Published: 2012/09/25
Channel: footagefarm
Little Rock- School Integration
Little Rock- School Integration
Published: 2013/04/18
Channel: ryan poulsen
Integration of Central High School in Little Rock Arkansas
Integration of Central High School in Little Rock Arkansas
Published: 2013/02/27
Channel: The Grio
The Remarkable Story of the Battle to Integrate Little Rock
The Remarkable Story of the Battle to Integrate Little Rock's Central High School (1994)
Published: 2014/12/19
Channel: Remember This
Little Rock, 1957 - Civil Rights Battleground
Little Rock, 1957 - Civil Rights Battleground
Published: 2014/12/10
Channel: Eisenhower Memorial
55 years later: Little Rock Nine remembered
55 years later: Little Rock Nine remembered
Published: 2012/12/04
Channel: HLN
[Lesson 16] Little Rock Nine
[Lesson 16] Little Rock Nine
Published: 2016/05/21
Channel: Dr. Cillo's Myth or Reality
4th September 1957: Black students denied entry to Little Rock High School
4th September 1957: Black students denied entry to Little Rock High School
Published: 2016/09/03
Channel: HistoryPod
Colonel (Ret.) Heath Twichell on securing Little Rock Central High School
Colonel (Ret.) Heath Twichell on securing Little Rock Central High School
Published: 2015/01/28
Channel: West Point Department of History
Little Rock Central High School: National Guard was deployed to protect Black students
Little Rock Central High School: National Guard was deployed to protect Black students
Published: 2017/02/06
Channel: Stop The Lies
Little Rock Nine
Little Rock Nine
Published: 2016/04/06
Channel: MrStapes33
Integration of Central High in Little Rock
Integration of Central High in Little Rock
Published: 2008/07/08
Channel: The Leadership Conference
Little Rock Central: 50 Years Later
Little Rock Central: 50 Years Later
Published: 2017/01/13
Channel: hbostore
Little Rock Central High School Integration Enforcement, 29Sep-0ct0157  221367-06.mp4 | Footage Farm
Little Rock Central High School Integration Enforcement, 29Sep-0ct0157 221367-06.mp4 | Footage Farm
Published: 2012/09/25
Channel: footagefarm
Little Rock, Arkansas
Little Rock, Arkansas
Published: 2015/04/27
Channel: Markiah Baker
Eisenhower Address on Little Rock Integration Problem
Eisenhower Address on Little Rock Integration Problem
Published: 2013/01/03
Channel: Taylor F.
Pro-Segregation Riots Draw Federal Troops
Pro-Segregation Riots Draw Federal Troops
Published: 2006/09/04
Channel: The Impious Digest
US 101st Airborne Division guards escort African American students at Little Rock...HD Stock Footage
US 101st Airborne Division guards escort African American students at Little Rock...HD Stock Footage
Published: 2014/05/27
Channel: CriticalPast
Little Rock Central: 50 Years Later
Little Rock Central: 50 Years Later
Published: 2017/04/28
Channel: YUNG JUDAH
Eyes On The Prize - (Part 2) Fighting Back 1957–1962
Eyes On The Prize - (Part 2) Fighting Back 1957–1962
Published: 2016/04/14
Channel: INDIVIDUAL THOUGHT
Black Integration, MLK, Murdered Blacks, University Campus Life
Black Integration, MLK, Murdered Blacks, University Campus Life
Published: 2015/07/21
Channel: AP Archive
Operation Arkansas
Operation Arkansas
Published: 2014/07/19
Channel: U.S. Army Website Videos
Desegregation of Central High School 2
Desegregation of Central High School 2
Published: 2015/06/09
Channel: Taliya Gittleman
WHAT IS SEGREGATION?
WHAT IS SEGREGATION?
Published: 2014/02/08
Channel: UrbanGameChanger
Dr. Melba Pattillo Beals at ALA 2009
Dr. Melba Pattillo Beals at ALA 2009
Published: 2009/07/15
Channel: klaula
"My Father Said Yes: A White Pastor in Little Rock School Integration"
"My Father Said Yes: A White Pastor in Little Rock School Integration"
Published: 2009/10/16
Channel: Vanderbilt University
TROUBLE IN LITTLE ROCK
TROUBLE IN LITTLE ROCK
Published: 2015/07/21
Channel: British Movietone
Historic Little Rock Central High - Dji Phantom 3 Advance
Historic Little Rock Central High - Dji Phantom 3 Advance
Published: 2016/04/17
Channel: Sky Drone-Angel
Little Rock Nine
Little Rock Nine
Published: 2011/03/19
Channel: vengencefrom1979
1957 THROWBACK: White Mob BRUTALLY BEATS Black News Reporter, L. ALEX WILSON!!
1957 THROWBACK: White Mob BRUTALLY BEATS Black News Reporter, L. ALEX WILSON!!
Published: 2017/01/06
Channel: Hezakya Newz & Music
[TRAILER] Little Rock, 1957 - The Civil Rights Battleground
[TRAILER] Little Rock, 1957 - The Civil Rights Battleground
Published: 2014/12/03
Channel: Eisenhower Memorial
Warriors Don
Warriors Don't Cry: A Searing Memoir of the Battle to Integrate Little Rock's Central High
Published: 2017/01/07
Channel: Errol Hackney
50th Anniversary of Central High School with Little Rock Nine
50th Anniversary of Central High School with Little Rock Nine
Published: 2011/02/21
Channel: Clinton Foundation
1957 National Guard troops relax on lawn of Central High Schooll  Little Rock, Arkansas
1957 National Guard troops relax on lawn of Central High Schooll Little Rock, Arkansas
Published: 2014/06/29
Channel: Chatur Trivedi
Little Rock Arkansas Family Trip. Little Rock Central High School. #LittleRockNine
Little Rock Arkansas Family Trip. Little Rock Central High School. #LittleRockNine
Published: 2016/04/29
Channel: Genevas Closett
1957_Little Rock Central High School
1957_Little Rock Central High School
Published: 2013/07/07
Channel: Tom Meros
Korea- Little Rock High School
Korea- Little Rock High School
Published: 2010/01/04
Channel: ArmyDiversity
Nine from Little Rock (1964)
Nine from Little Rock (1964)
Published: 2017/02/12
Channel: reelblack
Integration Of Little Rock Central High School 1957
Integration Of Little Rock Central High School 1957
Published: 2016/08/02
Channel: Polly Barnett
Fifty years ago, nine black students integrated an all-white high school in Little Rock, Ark. As the
Fifty years ago, nine black students integrated an all-white high school in Little Rock, Ark. As the
Published: 2015/07/31
Channel: AP Archive
AS WE SEE IT: "Little Rock Central High School," 1979 (Pt. 1)
AS WE SEE IT: "Little Rock Central High School," 1979 (Pt. 1)
Published: 2014/11/12
Channel: Robert Cass
PAN National Guard troops walk in front of Central High School  Little Rock, Arkansas
PAN National Guard troops walk in front of Central High School Little Rock, Arkansas
Published: 2014/06/29
Channel: Chatur Trivedi
Unofficial APUSH Trailer [HD]: The Integration of Little Rock Central High School 1957
Unofficial APUSH Trailer [HD]: The Integration of Little Rock Central High School 1957
Published: 2015/09/24
Channel: Chris Kreid
National Guard Troops at Little Rock High School Exterior of Little Rock Central High School
National Guard Troops at Little Rock High School Exterior of Little Rock Central High School
Published: 2014/06/29
Channel: Chatur Trivedi
WKY News Can #89. 1957.
WKY News Can #89. 1957.
Published: 2013/11/25
Channel: The WKY KTVY KFOR Archives brought to you by the Oklahoma Historical Society
fable of faubus-  conservatoire
fable of faubus- conservatoire
Published: 2015/05/14
Channel: Cristian Ospina
Little Rock Nine - Elizabeth Eckford
Little Rock Nine - Elizabeth Eckford
Published: 2012/04/03
Channel: American Red Cross
UkeFoote "Fables of Faubus" by Charles Mingus
UkeFoote "Fables of Faubus" by Charles Mingus
Published: 2016/11/18
Channel: Brian Fergus
A Compelling Social History of Women in America: The Famous and the Obscure (2003)
A Compelling Social History of Women in America: The Famous and the Obscure (2003)
Published: 2016/02/27
Channel: The Film Archives
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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This article is part of a series on the
Arkansas National Guard
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Arkansas National Guard
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Arkansas State Guard, 1879–1907
Arkansas State Guard and the Spanish–American War
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On May 17, 1954, the United States Supreme Court ruled that racial segregation of public schools was unconstitutional in the United States.[1] That ruling would focus the spotlight of national attention in the United States upon the Arkansas National Guard and the Integration of Central High School. The Arkansas National Guard was drawn into the conflict when Governor Orval Faubus ordered them to "Preserve the Peace" by turning away the black students who were attempting to integrate into Little Rock's Central High School. President Dwight D. Eisenhower reacted to this use of the Guard to foil the court-ordered integration by federalizing the entire Arkansas National Guard and using it to protect the nine black students integrating Central High School.

Guard ordered to "Preserve the Peace"[edit]

Lt. Col. Marion Johnson, commander of National Guard troops, turns back a group of African Americans seeking to enter Central High School. He was acting on orders of Governor Faubus not to admit the students.

After a series of legal proceedings the Federal District Court ordered the Little Rock School District to proceed with its integration plans when school opened on September 4, 1957. Governor Orval Faubus ordered the Arkansas National Guard to Little Rock Central High School on September 4, 1957, because he said he had evidence (although none was shown) that there was "...imminent danger of tumult, riot and breach of peace and the doing of violence to persons and property."[2] The governor initially ordered to state duty the State Headquarters Detachment, the Base Detachment at Adams Field and any other units the Adjutant General felt necessary to "accomplish the mission of maintaining or restoring law and order and to preserve the peace, health, safety and security of the citizens of Pulaski County, Arkansas."[3] On September 4, Elizabeth Eckford was the only student to enter the school due to lack of communication. It is commonly mistaken that she was taking this stand on her own but rather it was because she was the only student who didn't have a phone so nobody could contact her to let her know the integration wasn't happening until the next day.[4]

Major General Sherman T. Clinger, the Adjutant General of Arkansas, assembled a force of 289 soldiers under command of Lieutenant Colonel Marion Johnson.[5] On September 4, 1957, Johnson told nine black students who were attempting to enter Central High School to return home. The National Guard presence gradually decreased to a fifteen-man day and night shift. By court order,[6] the National Guard was replaced by the Little Rock City Police on Friday, September 20, 1957.[3]

On Monday, September 23, 1957, nine black students entered Central High. These nine students were Elizabeth Eckford, Minnijean Brown, Ernest Green, Thelma Mothershed, Melba Pattillo, Gloria Ray, Terrance Roberts, Jefferson Thomas and Carlotta Walls.[7] When word spread that the students were inside, a crowd of approximately 1,000 gathered outside the school.[6] There was a concern that the police would not be able to handle the crowd so for the safety of the students they were escorted back out of the school for the day. A force of 150 Guardsmen had been assembled and placed on five-minute notice to assist the police at Central, but they were not called on.[3]

President Eisenhower federalizes the Guard[edit]

On Monday, September 23, 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued proclamation 3204[8] demanding anyone involved with the obstruction of justice to disperse. When his order was not followed, Eisenhower federalized the entire Arkansas National Guard the following day[9] and unit members began assembling at home stations throughout the night. By order of the president, the National Guard was thus directed to support the integration rather than block it as the units had been before.[10] On the 24th, elements of the 101st Airborne Division began arriving at Little Rock to provide additional support and took up positions around Central High. That same day, Adjutant General Clinger met with the commander of the Arkansas Military District and was ordered to assemble a force at Camp Robinson for duty at Central High. Those units were:[3]

1st Battalion, 153rd Infantry Regiment
3rd Battalion, 153rd Infantry Regiment
39th Military Police Company and
Company D, 212th Signal Battalion.

This force, consisting of 107 officers, fifteen warrant officers and 1,184 enlisted men closed on Camp Robinson just after noon on the 25th. The National Guard soldiers were told, "Our mission is to enforce the orders of the federal courts with respect to the attendance at the public schools of Little Rock of all those who are properly enrolled, and to maintain law and order while doing so…Our individual feelings towards those court orders should have no influence on our execution of the mission."[11] One Arkansas Guard major was quoted as saying, "We have been ordered to maintain the peace and that is what we intend to do."[10] The remainder of Arkansas National Guard units remained at home stations, conducting daily formations and training, but taking no part in the actual operations around Central High School.[12]

Student protection[edit]

Beginning with night patrols on the 25th, the Arkansas units worked with the 101st Airborne Division, gradually taking over more of the responsibility. By the 30th the Arkansas National Guard had full responsibility for escorting the black students to and from Central High and for providing them with protection while inside the school. The majority of the Arkansas National Guard was released from active duty on October 1, 1957. The initial force of 1,200 assembled at Camp Robinson for duty at Central High School,[13] was gradually reduced to 435 officers and men. The 1st Battalion, 153rd Infantry Regiment (referred to as Task Force 153rd Infantry in the situational reports to President Eisenhower) performed this duty.[14]

From December 1957 through May 1958, Task Force 153rd Infantry maintained one platoon at Central High School, another on 30 minute recall at Camp Robinson, a company on one hour recall, while the remainder of the battalion remained on duty at Camp Robinson.[14] Members of the unit were involved in breaking up assaults on members of the Little Rock Nine by white students and responding to bomb threats against the school as late as February 1958.[15] On May 8, 1958, the last three Arkansas National Guard Soldiers withdrew from Central High School.[12]

Guard conduct[edit]

The Arkansas National Guard's actions in the face of intense national scrutiny were applauded by some people on both sides of the Central High School Integration Crisis. Harry Ashmore, editor of the Arkansas Gazette newspaper, who won the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing "for the forcefulness, dispassionate analysis and clarity of his editorials on the school integration conflict in Little Rock",[16] said that no one, whatever their beliefs on school integration, could feel anything but admiration for the way the Arkansas Guardsmen went calmly about their duties, steering clear of partisan pressure.[17] Superintendent of Little Rock Schools, Virgil Blossom, was also quoted as saying, "I have nothing but praise for the Guardsmen and the manner in which they performed a trying job under difficult circumstances." [17] They were not, however, applauded by at least one member of the Little Rock Nine. In her memoir about her experience at Central High, Melba Pattillo Beals recalls demanding a meeting with General Sherman T. Clinger of the Arkansas National Guard after the guardsmen "stood by, socializing and flirting, while we were being beaten within an inch of our lives."[18] According to Beals, Clinger did not deny the charges, but merely explained that his men had to live in the community. She further described the eighteen guardsmen selected as bodyguards after this meeting as the "biggest, dumbest, most disheveled hayseeds I'd ever seen."

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954)". FindLaw. http://laws.findlaw.com/us/347/483.html. Retrieved 2008-02-04.
  2. ^ Orval Faubus Papers, University of Arkansas Libraries, Gov. Orval Faubus Declares a State of Emergency, accessed 1 October 2010, "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-08-26. Retrieved 2010-10-08. 
  3. ^ a b c d The Arkansas National Guard Museum, Central High, Accessed 1 October 2010, "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-06-12. Retrieved 2010-11-03. 
  4. ^ Kirk, John. "Crisis at central high". Retrieved 7 May 2014. 
  5. ^ McGlasson, MAJ W.D., The Forgotten Story of Little Rock, The Arkansas Military Journal, Arkansas National Guard Historical Foundation, Vol 6, Number 3, Page 20.
  6. ^ a b The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture, Desegregation of Central High School, accessed 1 October 2010, http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=718
  7. ^ Kirk, John. "Crisis at Central High". Retrieved 7 May 2014. 
  8. ^ Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, Digital Documents and Photographs Project, Civil Rights: The Little Rock School Integration Crisis, Accessed 11 June 2013, http://www.eisenhower.archives.gov/research/online_documents/civil_rights_little_rock/Press_Release_Proclamation.pdf
  9. ^ Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, Digital Documents and Photographs Project, Civil Rights: The Little Rock School Integration Crisis, Accessed 11 June 2013, http://www.eisenhower.archives.gov/research/online_documents/civil_rights_little_rock/Press_Release_EO_10730.pdf
  10. ^ a b Heathscott, Capt. Chris, Arkansas National Guard State Public Affairs Office, Guardsmen Honor Black History Month with Reflections on Crisis at Little Rock Central High, Accessed 1 October 2010, "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-04-06. Retrieved 2016-04-14. 
  11. ^ Annex C to Operations Order Number 1, from Headquarters Arkansas National Guard, dated October 28, 1975
  12. ^ a b McGlasson, MAJ W.D. The Forgotten Story of Little Rock, The Arkansas Military Journal, Arkansas National Guard Historical Foundation, Vol 6, Number 3, Page 17.
  13. ^ McGlasson, MAJ W.D. The Forgotten Story of Little Rock, The Arkansas Military Journal, Arkansas National Guard Historical Foundation, Vol 6, Number 3, Page 25
  14. ^ a b Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, Civil Rights: The Little Rock School Integration Crisis, Situation Report No. 176, by the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Military Operations, December 17, 1957, accessed 1 October 2010, http://www.eisenhower.archives.gov/research/online_documents/civil_rights_little_rock/Situation_Report_no176.pdf
  15. ^ Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, Civil Rights: The Little Rock School Integration Crisis, Situation Report No. 211, by the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Military Operations, December 17, 1957, accessed 1 October 2010, http://www.eisenhower.archives.gov/research/online_documents/civil_rights_little_rock/Situation_Report_no211.pdf
  16. ^ "The Pulitzer Prize Winners 1958". the Pulitzer Board. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved 2006-07-11. 
  17. ^ a b McGlasson, MAJ W.D. The Forgotten Story of Little Rock, The Arkansas Military Journal, Arkansas National Guard Historical Foundation, Vol 6, Number 3, Page 36
  18. ^ Beals, M. P. (1994). Warriors don't cry: A searing memoir of the battle to integrate little rock's central high. New York: Simon & Schuster. Page 170

External links[edit]

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