STORIES
Women

Ruby Nell Bridges

by Jasmine from New Orleans

I now know that experience comes to us for a purpose, and if we follow the guidance of the spirit within us, we will probably find that the purpose is a good one.

Who is an African American activist who became a symbol of the Civil Rights Movement at the age of six? She was also the youngest of a group of African American students to integrate schools in the American South. She was and is a brave person named Ruby Nell Bridges. She is an inspiration to all.

Ruby Bridges was born in Tylertown, Mississippi, on September 8, 1954, with her brothers and sisters. They lived on a farm with her grandparents and parents. Her parents were Lucille and Abon Bridges. She was born the same year the Supreme Court's Brown vs. Board of Education decision desegregated the schools.

When Ruby was in kindergarten, she was one of many African-American kids in New Orleans who were chosen to take a test to see whether or not she could attend a white school. People said the test was written to be especially difficult so that students would have a hard time passing. The idea was if all the African-American children failed the test, New Orleans schools might be able to stay segregated for a while longer. She lived five blocks from an all-white school, but she still attended kindergarten several miles away in an all-black segregated school.

Ruby's father didn't want her to take the test because he knew there would be trouble if she passed it. In 1960, Ruby Bridges parents were informed by people from the NAACP that she was one of only six other African-American students to pass the test. Ruby would be the only African-American student to attend William Frantz School.

Ruby had a great influence on people all over the world. Even today Ruby visits classes all over the world to share her story with everyone. Ruby once said “I now know that experience comes to us for a purpose, and if we follow the guidance of the spirit within us, we will probably find that the purpose is a good one.”

Page created on 6/17/2010 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 6/17/2010 12:00:00 AM

The beliefs, viewpoints and opinions expressed in this hero submission on the website are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs, viewpoints and opinions of The MY HERO Project and its staff.

Extra Info

"Black History." African Online. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 May 2010. .

williams, Nicole. "Ruby Bridges." The Common Space. N.p., mar 2005. Web. 4 May 2010. .

"Ruby Bridges Biography." Bio. True Story. N.p., n.d. Web. 1 May 2010. .

Encyclopedia, Britannica. "Encyclopædia Britannica Online." [Online] Available http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9487594. 2010.

Encyclopedia, Britannica. "Encyclopædia Britannica Online." [Online] Available http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9487594. 2010.