Will Martin, Tyler Beames
Plessy vs. Ferguson
Background of this case Homer Plessy was an African American from Louisiana, who lived in the late 1800s. He was arrested for sitting in a section of a train marked “For Whites Only” and refusing to move. In 1896, Plessy’s case was overturned convicting Plessy of violating Louisiana’s segregation law.

Constitutional significance of this case The amendment being disputed in the Plessy v Ferguson case was the 14th amendment. The argument was over how “equality” had been interpreted in the amendment. The decision was made that the 14th amendment guaranteed equality to all citizens, but was not written to end separation based on race or social issues involving race. It only ended political discrimination based on race. The judges concluded that as long as the separate groups were equal, the 14th amendment was being carried out properly. The phrase “separate but equal” was a very important part of the argument because as long as everyone in the train cars was treated the same, no laws were being broken.

Decision/precedent set by this case The Court ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment meant “separate but equal” facilities for African Americans and for whites, under the equal protection clause.

Important terms/concepts related to this case - The phrase “separate but equal” was a very important part of the argument because as long as everyone in the train cars was treated the same, no laws were being broken.

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