March 26, 2021
Claudette Colvin was known as a civil rights activist during the 1950’s. She is most remembered for her refusal to give her seat up to a white woman on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama, at the age of 15.
Colvin grew up in a poor neighborhood in Montgomery, Alabama. Colvin took school very seriously and had a dream of becoming the President.
When the bus driver asked her to get up, she refused and said “she paid for her fare and it was her constitutional right.” Colvin was arrested for not giving up her seat and later became one of four plaintiffs in the Browder v. Gayle case. Colvin was the first woman to refuse to give up her seat on a segregated bus.
The civil rights movement chose not to give Colvin as much fame as Rosa Parks even though Colvin refused to give up her seat before Parks. They did not choose Colvin for their campaign because she was a pregnant teenager and was not married.
Colvin’s action made a huge difference because the Browder v. Gayle Case ruled that Montgomery’s segregated bus system was unconstitutional. In Montgomery, Alabama, Claudette is recognized on March 2nd as “Claudette Colvin Day.”
Zinnedproject.org. (n.d.) March 2, 1955: Claudette Colvin Refuses to Give Up Her Bus Seat. Retrieved March 2, 2021 from https://www.zinnedproject.org/news/tdih/claudette-colvin/
Biography.com Editors. (2018, Jan 19). Claudette Colvin Biography. Retrieved March 2, 2021 from https://www.biography.com/activist/claudette-colvin