When Rosa McCauley was born in 1913 the rules for people where she lived were very different. Because she was the granddaughter of former slaves which meant her skin was ‘black’ not ‘white,’ she was treated very differently.
She could not go to school with the other children as the bus would not stop for her and her brother. She had to go to a classroom at the back of the school just for ‘black’ children. If she used the bus to go out she had to sit at the back and stand up to give her seat to a ‘white’ person.
Rosa was discriminated against in every way. If you are not too sure what ‘discriminate’ means, use your dictionary or the internet to look it up and be horrified!
Eventually she met and married Raymond Parks, another ‘black’ man who was working very hard to make a difference, to try and get equal rights for all people. And so they began to work together and very, very slowly began to make a very, very small difference.
One day Rosa was travelling on the bus when she was asked to get out of her seat for a ‘white’ person and she said No! She was arrested and sent to gaol. She was 42 years old and had had enough!
Her story and her bravery bought the ‘black’ people of Montgomery, where she and her husband lived, decide come together and try to make a very big difference. They decided to ban using the busses at all, a ban which lasted for a year. They choose instead, to walk everywhere regardless of the weather. By doing this brave deed, and standing up for what she believed was right, she put her and her families’ lives at risk for many years, but she also helped to establish the civil rights movement in the United States.
United States Congress referred to her as “the first lady of civil rights” and “the mother of the freedom movement” and for most of her life she was considered as an activist in the Civil Rights Movement.
Rosa Parks fought hard all of her life to try to make changes and establish the rights for all people to be the treated the same, regardless of what colour, race or religion, throughout the United States.
Rosa Louise McCauley Parks died in 2005 and is a woman who lived a full leaving behind her and for all generations to come an ongoing legacy.
|Author||Lisbeth Kaiser. Illustrated Marta Antelo|
|Publisher||Frances Lincoln Children's Books|