The Civil Rights Act of 1964- Citizen Response

Feb 15, 2016

July 2 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Arkansas reacted with a mixture of compliance and non-compliance. In El Dorado, African Americans desegregated the Sky View Drive-In Theater, but the Old Fashioned Dairy Diner closed its doors. In Pine Bluff, a movie theater and four restaurants desegregated, but an attempt by eight African American men to gain service at Lusby’s Coffee Shop ended in a melee. In Forrest City, a number of facilities desegregated peacefully, but attempts to desegregate Forrest Lanes bowling alley led to a truck being overturned. In Fort Smith, African Americans successfully ate at Broadway Restaurant and Dinty Moore’s, but were refused service at City Barbecue. At Lake Texarkana, a race riot and six gunshot wounds resulted from attempts to desegregate the beach there. I’m John Kirk, of the UALR History Department, and this has been an Arkansas Moment.