Civil Rights and Federal Funding

The rest of the schools in the state desegregated after the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. While many schools resisted the ruling of Brown v. Topeka Board of Education, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act specifically warned that public institutions that continued to racially discriminate could lose federal funding. To avoid this, the state was forced to end segregation. Mississippi State University and the University of Southern Mississippi were the first to comply with the Civil Rights Act. Mississippi University for Women (then MSCW) managed to avoid desegregation until 1966. Delta State University was the last, enrolling its first black student in 1967.

President Johnson signing the 1964 Civil Rights Act, July 2, 1964.
The LBJ Presidential Library. LBJ Library photo by Cecil Stoughton.