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Barbara Rose Johns
Barbara Rose Johns
Published: 2009/10/29
Channel: Suzanne Scotten
Barbara Rose Johns - History Day 2017
Barbara Rose Johns - History Day 2017
Published: 2017/01/30
Channel: Lola Yost
Barbara Johns Civil Rights Leader
Barbara Johns Civil Rights Leader
Published: 2014/03/26
Channel: Katie Gould
Rosa Parks sat down and Barbara Johns stood up
Rosa Parks sat down and Barbara Johns stood up
Published: 2011/12/09
Channel: greenshirt
Wow Heidi, was für ein Kleid! Ist Rot ihre Lieblingsfarbe?
Wow Heidi, was für ein Kleid! Ist Rot ihre Lieblingsfarbe?
Published: 2017/09/23
Channel: Promiflash
Barbara Rose - " The Voice Of Love "
Barbara Rose - " The Voice Of Love "
Published: 2010/01/09
Channel: Barbara Rose
Filming Of Barbara Johns Speech
Filming Of Barbara Johns Speech
Published: 2010/03/24
Channel: studioammons
Dedication of the Barbara Johns Building in Richmond, Virginia
Dedication of the Barbara Johns Building in Richmond, Virginia
Published: 2017/02/23
Channel: Community Idea Stations
MERYL STREEP BETTE MIDLER CHER OLIVIA NEWTON JOHN GOLDIE HAWN
MERYL STREEP BETTE MIDLER CHER OLIVIA NEWTON JOHN GOLDIE HAWN 'WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD'
Published: 2015/08/05
Channel: Ivan F
Gallery Talk with Barbara Rose on Al Held   BLOUIN ARTINFO
Gallery Talk with Barbara Rose on Al Held BLOUIN ARTINFO
Published: 2015/07/23
Channel: Minh Tú Thân
Barbara rose
Barbara rose
Published: 2014/09/09
Channel: Jennifer Hornbrook
Frank Stella - 1972
Frank Stella - 1972
Published: 2008/08/01
Channel: 5imone5
Elton John - Candle In The Wind || Lady Diana
Elton John - Candle In The Wind || Lady Diana
Published: 2017/08/30
Channel: Selenator Zenere
6 Teenagers Who Made History
6 Teenagers Who Made History
Published: 2016/09/28
Channel: VeniVidiVici!
The Rotunda Show Exclusive - Longwood Honors Dr. King
The Rotunda Show Exclusive - Longwood Honors Dr. King
Published: 2010/01/29
Channel: Rotunda Studios
American Art in the 1960s
American Art in the 1960s
Published: 2016/07/09
Channel: Michael Blackwood Productions
Elton John at 70 [Interview].
Elton John at 70 [Interview].
Published: 2017/03/24
Channel: bluemoves78
Download book  The Girl from the Tar Paper School: Barbara Rose Johns and the Advent of the Civil
Download book The Girl from the Tar Paper School: Barbara Rose Johns and the Advent of the Civil
Published: 2017/06/04
Channel: Juliet Hamblen
Download book  The Girl from the Tar Paper School: Barbara Rose Johns and the Advent of the Civil
Download book The Girl from the Tar Paper School: Barbara Rose Johns and the Advent of the Civil
Published: 2017/06/04
Channel: Juliet Hamblen
Justin Fairfax tells the story of Barbara Johns
Justin Fairfax tells the story of Barbara Johns
Published: 2017/06/27
Channel: Turnout Blue
2012 Barbara John
2012 Barbara John
Published: 2013/03/21
Channel: bfdt2000
Joy Cabarrus Speakes - Farmville, VA.
Joy Cabarrus Speakes - Farmville, VA.
Published: 2015/04/15
Channel: Virginia Voices
Teacher Barbara Jones NASUWT speaks to protesters in Huddersfield
Teacher Barbara Jones NASUWT speaks to protesters in Huddersfield
Published: 2011/12/01
Channel: John Harvey
Dr. Barbara Takes A Walk (1960)
Dr. Barbara Takes A Walk (1960)
Published: 2014/04/13
Channel: British Pathé
Barbara Johns talks to her family 1
Barbara Johns talks to her family 1
Published: 2012/11/13
Channel: Mike Johns
Barbara Johns Dezaray, Katelyn, and Susan Mrs  Arnold
Barbara Johns Dezaray, Katelyn, and Susan Mrs Arnold's Class
Published: 2017/05/12
Channel: Rebecca Arnold
Daymond John: FUBU Doesn’t Mean ‘For Us By Us’! | TMZ
Daymond John: FUBU Doesn’t Mean ‘For Us By Us’! | TMZ
Published: 2015/06/17
Channel: TMZ
Sir Elton John leads tributes to
Sir Elton John leads tributes to 'truly remarkable' Princess Diana as emotional fans gather to pay
Published: 2017/08/31
Channel: Breaking News
RAK from Barbara Johns. Wild Orchid Crafts - FLOWERS
RAK from Barbara Johns. Wild Orchid Crafts - FLOWERS
Published: 2013/04/12
Channel: scrapincrazed
Elton John - Candle in the Wind/Goodbye England
Elton John - Candle in the Wind/Goodbye England's Rose (Live at Princess Diana's Funeral - 1997)
Published: 2014/12/01
Channel: Philip Anness
BRNKANA  HRABICE
BRNKANA HRABICE
Published: 2013/08/05
Channel: DJ Barbara Rose
Flexible Learning Spaces at Barbara Rose Elementary
Flexible Learning Spaces at Barbara Rose Elementary
Published: 2017/04/25
Channel: Eliza Aliotta
Elton John and David Furnish Loves Their Baby
Elton John and David Furnish Loves Their Baby
Published: 2011/04/23
Channel: Myfavoritetvmovies
Barbara Rose - A Train
Barbara Rose - A Train
Published: 2013/01/30
Channel: Barbara Rose
Barbara Walters interviews Elton John
Barbara Walters interviews Elton John
Published: 2010/07/11
Channel: iThembaProductions
Goodbye Norma Jeane: Elton John sings to Marilyn Monroe
Goodbye Norma Jeane: Elton John sings to Marilyn Monroe
Published: 2007/03/21
Channel: Cesar Del Rey
Barby  -   Dotykat se snu
Barby - Dotykat se snu
Published: 2015/07/28
Channel: DJ Barbara Rose
Davis v. Prince Edward County, Farmville, Virginia
Davis v. Prince Edward County, Farmville, Virginia
Published: 2008/02/09
Channel: ResearchChannel
How Rose Kennedy Reacted to JFK Assassination
How Rose Kennedy Reacted to JFK Assassination
Published: 2013/10/21
Channel: MCamericanpresident
MOV 0017
MOV 0017
Published: 2013/08/05
Channel: DJ Barbara Rose
Fanfare St.Barbara G.A.  Somers-zomerconcert-The Rose on Bolero 24 juni 2012
Fanfare St.Barbara G.A. Somers-zomerconcert-The Rose on Bolero 24 juni 2012
Published: 2012/06/24
Channel: BarbaraGA
Elton John - Goodbye England
Elton John - Goodbye England's Rose (Candle in the Wind) - Diana's Funeral
Published: 2008/05/07
Channel: swguthrie
Johns Family Reunion Day 3
Johns Family Reunion Day 3
Published: 2009/08/23
Channel: MSGJOHNS
Glynis Johns on "Miranda" Part 2
Glynis Johns on "Miranda" Part 2
Published: 2013/09/15
Channel: Henderson's Film Industries
Elton John - Candle In The Wind
Elton John - Candle In The Wind
Published: 2010/09/01
Channel: EltonJohnVEVO
Tribute to Barbara LaMarr
Tribute to Barbara LaMarr
Published: 2014/09/07
Channel: Shabannie
Barbara Fairchild - Teddy Bear Song -Lyrics
Barbara Fairchild - Teddy Bear Song -Lyrics
Published: 2010/10/22
Channel: TheCountryLyrics
Andrea Bocelli, Céline Dion - The Prayer
Andrea Bocelli, Céline Dion - The Prayer
Published: 2015/10/23
Channel: AndreaBocelliVEVO
Elton John
Elton John's proposal to David Furnish 11 years ago revealed
Published: 2016/05/20
Channel: Security Camera
Nola Richardson "Come again, sweet love doth now invite" by John Dowland
Nola Richardson "Come again, sweet love doth now invite" by John Dowland
Published: 2013/03/09
Channel: Nola Richardson
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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Barbara Rose Johns Powell
Born (1935-03-06)March 6, 1935
New York City, New York
Died September 25, 1991(1991-09-25) (aged 56)
Occupation Civil rights activist, librarian
Known for Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County
R.R. Moton High School protest

Barbara Rose Johns Powell (born March 6, 1935– died September 25, 1991) was a young, American civil rights leader-pioneer and the niece of one of the "fathers of the Civil Rights Movement," Vernon Johns.[1] On April 23, 1951, at the age of 16, Powell led a student strike for equal education at R.R. Moton High School in Farmville, Prince Edward County, Virginia. After securing NAACP legal support, the Moton students filed Davis v. Prince Edward County, the largest and only student initiated case consolidated into Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark 1954 U.S. Supreme Court decision declaring "separate but equal" public schools unconstitutional.

Early life[edit]

Barbara Rose Johns Powell was born in New York City, New York in 1935. Her family had roots in Prince Edward County, Virginia, where they returned to live. Her mother worked in Washington D.C. for the U.S. Navy, and her father operated the farm where the family resided. The eldest of five children, Powell had a younger sister, Joan Johns Cobbs, and three younger brothers: Ernest; Roderick, who served in Vietnam as a dog handler and was awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart; and Robert.

Powell’s uncle was the prominent Vernon Johns, an outspoken activist for civil rights. When he visited Powell and her family, he would ask the children questions about black history.[2] This motivated Powell and her siblings to study black history, and Powell, as well as her siblings, was influenced by Vernon and his outspoken nature.

Moton High School[edit]

Plaque on Virginia Capitol Grounds commemorating Barbara Johns' initiative in integrating Virginia schools

While living in Prince Edward County, Powell was educated in segregated public schools. In 1951, 16-year-old Barbara Johns was a junior at the all-black Moton High School in Farmville. Across town was another school, open exclusively to white students. The resources available to each school, and the quality of the facilities, were unequal. Powell’s school was designed and built to hold roughly 200 students, though by 1951 enrollment was twice that number.[3] According to a first-person account from Powell’s sister, Joan:

In winter the school was very cold. And a lot of times we had to put on our jackets. Now, the students that sat closest to the wood stove were very warm and the ones who sat farthest away were very cold. And I remember being cold a lot of times and sitting in the classroom with my jacket on. When it rained, we would get water through the ceiling. So there were lots of pails sitting around the classroom. And sometimes we had to raise our umbrellas to keep the water off our heads. It was a very difficult setting for trying to learn.[2]

Parents of the black students appealed to the all-white school board to provide a larger and properly equipped facility. As a stopgap measure, the board erected several tar paper shacks to handle the overflow of students.[3] Powell was frustrated with the separate and unequal facilities and decided to take action after missing her school bus and watching a bus for the white students pass her.[4] She approached a trusted teacher to voice her concerns and the teacher prompted her to take action.[5]

Organizing the strike and filing suit[edit]

Powell met with several classmates and they all agreed to help organize a student strike. On April 23 1951[6] the plan Powell initiated was put into action. The principal of the school was tricked into leaving by being told that some students were downtown causing trouble.[7] While the principal was away, Barbara Johns forged a memo from that principal telling the teachers to bring their classes to a special assembly. The teachers brought their classes and left the assembly per request.[5] She then delivered a speech to all 450 students, revealing her plans for a student strike in protest of the unequal conditions of the black and white schools. The students agreed to participate, and on that day they marched down to the county courthouse to make officials aware of the large difference in quality between the white and black schools.[8] Powell had hoped that the strike would end with the county officials sympathizing with the students and building them a new school, but was instead met with indifference and struggle.[4]

While the strike was being carried out Powell and other fellow students sought legal counsel from the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People). The NAACP agreed to assist as long as the suit would be for an integrated school system, and not just equal facilities.[7] A month later, the NAACP filed Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County in federal court. The court upheld segregation in Prince Edward County, and the NAACP appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. Davis v. Prince Edward County, along with four other cases, became part of the case Brown v. Board of Education. As Davis was the only case in Brown initiated by student protest, it is seen by some as the beginning of the Civil Rights Movement.[9]

After the strike[edit]

Shortly after the strike, Powell’s parents, fearing for her safety, sent her to Montgomery, Alabama to live with her uncle.[10] After the strike, Powell lived out the rest of her life in relative peace. She married William Powell and raised five children.[11] Her commitment to education moved her to become a librarian. She served in this profession until her death in 1991.

Activist legacy[edit]

Barbara Johns' contribution to civil rights is often overlooked because she was a teenager when she made a difference. In the Pulitzer Prize-winning Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 1954–63, the author Taylor Branch remarks upon Davis v. Prince Edward:

The case remained muffled in white consciousness, and the schoolchild origins of the lawsuit were lost as well on nearly all Negroes outside Prince Edward County. ... The idea that non-adults of any race might play a leading role in political events had simply failed to register on anyone — except perhaps the Klansmen who burned a cross in the Johns' yard one night, and even then people thought their target might not have been Barbara but her notorious firebrand uncle.[12]

The Virginia Civil Rights Memorial was opened in 2008, with Powell and several other students prominently featured on one side with the quote "It seemed like reaching for the moon." The Library of Virginia also honored Powell in 2005 by naming her one of their Virginia Women in History.[13]

In 2017 Governor Terry McAuliffe officially named the Office of the Attorney General after Powell, for her impact on the civil rights movement.[4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "State building named for student whose civil rights strike led to school changes". WTVR.com. 2017-01-13. Retrieved 2017-03-01. 
  2. ^ a b "The History of Jim Crow". The History of Jim Crow. Archived from the original on 1 March 2007. Retrieved 2007-03-13. 
  3. ^ a b Richard Wormser. "The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow.Jim Crow Stories.People.Barbara Johns". The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow. PBS. Archived from the original on 8 March 2007. Retrieved 2007-03-13. 
  4. ^ a b c Schneider, Gregory (February 23, 2017). "Virginia dedicates state office building in honor of civil rights pioneer". Washington Post. Retrieved 2017-03-01. 
  5. ^ a b HAMMERSTROM, DICK. "Column: Johns finally getting recognition she deserves". Fredericksburg.com. Retrieved 2017-03-01. 
  6. ^ "Farmville, Virginia – Separate is Not Equal". Separate is Not Equal Brown v. Board of Education. Smithsonian National Museuem of American History. Retrieved 2007-03-13. 
  7. ^ a b The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow, Jim Crow Stories . People . Barbara Johns | PBS
  8. ^ "African American Registry" Students Protest Virginia segregated school!". The African American Registry. The African American Registry. Archived from the original on 2006-10-27. Retrieved 2007-03-13. 
  9. ^ "Remembering Barbara Johns". Hampden Sydney College News & Events. Hampden Sydney College. Archived from the original on 2007-08-27. Retrieved 2007-03-13. 
  10. ^ The History of Jim Crow Archived 2007-03-01 at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ "Barbara Johns Biography". Biography. Retrieved 2007-03-13. 
  12. ^ Bill Medic. "Pro Youth Pages Black History blind spot". Pro Youth Pages. Retrieved 2008-07-12. 
  13. ^ "Virginia Women in History". Library of Virginia. Retrieved 2017-03-01. 

Additional reading[edit]

  • Branch, Taylor (1989). Parting the Waters: America in the King Years 1954–63. Touchstone. 
  • Smith, Bob (1966). They Closed Their Schools: Prince Edward County, Virginia 1951–1964. 
  • John A. Stokes with Lois Wolfe, Students on Strike: Jim Crown, Civil Rights, 'Brown,' and Me, A Memoir, Washington, DC: National Geographic Press, 2008
  • Richard Kluger,"Stick With Us," Simple Justice Vintage: 1974: 454–480.
  • Kanefield, Teri, The Girl from the Tar Paper School: Barbara Rose Johns and the Advent of the Civil Rights Movement, Harry N. Abrams, 2014

External links[edit]

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