December 14, 1964: Racial Discrimination Prohibited in Private Hotels [VIDEO]

0 Posted by - August 17, 2017 - CIVIL RIGHTS, Video

On September 5, 1956, the Heart of Atlanta Motel opened for business. Owned by committed segregationist Moreton Rolleston, Jr., the hotel refused African American patrons as a matter of general policy.

Less than a decade later, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibited discrimination in places of public accommodation that affect commerce. Rolleston sued the federal government, claiming that Congress had exceeded its constitutionally-granted power to regulate commerce.

In a landmark, unanimous ruling on December 14, 1964, the U.S. Supreme Court firmly upheld the constitutionality of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and ordered the Heart of Atlanta Motel to cease refusing service to African Americans.

Hosted by the late D’Army Bailey, Moments in Civil Rights History is produced in collaboration with the Equal Justice Initiative and is part of Comcast NBCUniversal’s “His Dream, Our Stories” project. Visit ,a href=”http://www.HisDreamOurStories.com”>His Dreams, Our Stories for more Civil Rights History, first-hand accounts from those who led, participate in or benefited from the Movement, or to share a civil rights story of your own (or that of a loved one).

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