Oldest and largest U.S. civil rights organization. It was founded in 1909 to secure political, educational, social, and economic equality for African Americans; W.E.B. Du Bois and Ida B. Wells were among its 60 founders. Headquartered in Baltimore, Md., the NAACP has undertaken litigation, political activity, and public education programs. In 1939 it organized the independent Legal Defense and Education Fund as its legal arm, which sued for school desegregation in Brown v. Board of Education (1954). During World War II it pressed for desegregation of the armed forces, which was achieved in 1948. In 1967 its general counsel, Thurgood Marshall, became the U.S. Supreme Court's first African American justice.

Variants of NAACP

NAACP in full National Association for the Advancement of Colored People

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