0 50th Anniversary of “the Little Rock Nine” Students who made Black History

Ernest Green and Daisy Bates are important black history people central to the story of the "Little Rock Nine."

Little Rock Nine student Ernest Green was cast into the national spotlight in 1957 integrating all white Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas.

He graduated in 1958, then went on to achieve his B.A. from Michigan State University in 1962, and his M.A. in 1964. In 1977, President Jimmy Carter nominated Green to become Assistant Secretary of Labor in charge of employment and training.

Activist Daisy Bates co-founded Arkansas' State-Press Newspaper. In 1953, she was elected President of the Arkansas Conference of NAACP branches.

After the 1954 Brown vs. the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas Supreme Court case (outlawing segregation in public schools), Bates pressured the Little Rock School Board to desegregate.

In 1957, nine students were selected to enroll in Central High School. Twice during September of 1957, the Little Rock Nine were prevented from entering Central High.

Daisy Bates appealed to President Eisenhower. Eisenhower sent federal troops to Little Rock and the nine students were enrolled. Governor Faubus of Arkansas then closed the high schools. In August, 1958, the U.S. Eight Circuit of Appeals reopened the high schools.