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From Atlanta to the most rural counties in Georgia's southwest Cotton Belt, black activists protested white supremacy in myriad ways—from legal challenges and mass demonstrations to strikes and self-defense. As late as World War II (1941-45) black Georgians were effectively denied the vote, segregated in most areas of daily life, and subject to persistent discrimination and often violence.
But by 1965, sweeping federal civil rights legislation prohibited segregation and discrimination, and this new phase of race relations was first officially welcomed into Georgia by Governor Jimmy Carter in 1971.
Organized black protest continued on a significant scale only in Atlanta, Macon, and Savannah, which became relative oases of moderate race relations in the state. Many white Georgians resisted integration and advocated closing schools rather than abiding by the court's decision. formed a special committee chaired by Atlanta attorney John A. The committee, known as the Sibley Commission, ultimately recommended local option on the principles of nonviolent mass confrontation elsewhere in the South, black Georgians in the major cities (and students in particular) resumed the assault on white supremacy and segregation during the early 1960s.
Yet even there, strict segregation continued and violent assaults on black residents were frequent. If urban protest was a common phenomenon across the region, however, each community had its own distinctive story to tell.presence certainly bolstered the scale of the existing protests, with up to 1,200 black residents spending time in jail (sources on the mass jailing numbers vary, from 750 to 1,200).
Primus King, whom Brewer recruited to actually attempt the vote, was turned away from the ballot box.
Several other African American men were turned away at the door. Chapman et al.) to the Democratic Party's ruling that only white men could vote in the Democratic primary was successful. In response, black registration across the state rose from a negligible number to some 125,000 within a few months—by far the highest registration total in any southern state.
Atlanta washerwomen, for example, joined together to strike for better pay, and black homes often contained guns to fight off the Ku Klux Klan.
Georgia's other notably successful movements were in Brunswick, Macon, and Rome, where black leaders often used the threat of heightened protest to force anxious city governments to take the lead in avoiding social the first to respond to protests elsewhere in the South, and under the leadership of students Lonnie King and Herschelle Sullivan, they organized a sophisticated and durable campaign.
The manipulative behavior of the city government, hiding behind its slogan of "the City Too Busy to Hate," coupled with the hesitant support of Atlanta's traditional black leadership, however, prevented the movement from securing a swift end to segregation.
The New Deal and World War II precipitated major economic changes in the state, hastening urbanization, industrialization, and the decline of the power of the planter elite.
Emboldened by their experience in the army, black veterans confronted white supremacy, and riots were common on Georgia's army bases.
Brewer, who had received death threats from a local Klan member, was assassinated on a Columbus street in 1956 by an unknown assailant, and the group he had founded to oppose white supremacy disbanded.