Plessy v. Ferguson


Plessy v. Ferguson

(1896) U.S. Supreme Court decision that established the legality of racial segregation so long as facilities were “separate but equal.” The case involved a challenge to Louisiana laws requiring separate railcars for African Americans and whites. Though the laws were upheld by a majority of 8 to 1, a famous dissent by John Marshall Harlan advanced the idea that the U.S. Constitution is “color-blind.” The Plessy decision was overturned in 1954 by Brown v. Board of Education.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on Plessy v. Ferguson, visit Britannica.com.

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