Coastal Hyde County is the site of one of the longest and most successful civil rights protests in American history. In 1968, the African American community boycotted Hyde County schools in response to the county’s desegregation plan.
To commemorate this movement, North Carolina dedicated a state highway historical marker at the Hyde County government services building on May 25.
Back in 1968, the board of education’s plan — created without input from the African American community — would have closed all black schools. Black families were disappointed in a plan that completely overlooked their educational heritage and protested by not sending their children to school for an entire year and participating in marches, protests and sit-ins.
Demonstrators marched to Raleigh twice and persisted despite facing tear gas, angry white neighbors and even a gun battle with the Ku Klux Klan.
Mainlander Alice Spencer Mackey, pictured below, was a student at the time of the boycott.
To read about the boycott, click here.