#BlackHistoryFacts | Thurgood Marshall
Thurgood Marshall (1908-1993) was a US Supreme Court Justice and civil rights advocate. As legal counsel for the NAACP, he was instrumental in ending legal segregation. In 1954, he led the litigation in the landmark case Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka, which ended racial segregation in public schools, in front of the Supreme Court. He won the case by showing segregation in schools was unconstitutional. This landmark decision set the stage for the civil rights movement. Marshall was appointed to the US Supreme Court in 1967 and became the nation's first black justice. He served for 24 years until 1991, working for civil rights for all Americans. Justice Marshall consistently supported rulings that upheld strong protections of individual rights and liberal considerations of controversial social issues. He was part of the majority that ruled in favor of legalizing abortion in the 1973 landmark case Roe vs. Wade. Alongside Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, Thurgood Marshall is viewed as one of the most important and greatest figures in the Civil Rights Movement, pursuing racial equality through the courts.