Plessey V. Ferguson Essay

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Robinson 1
Taniya Robinson
AP US History
August 7, 2013
Plessy V. Ferguson Homer Plessey born March 17, 1862, in New Orleans, Louisiana. Homer was the Plaintiff in the United States Supreme Court decision Plessy v. Ferguson. Plessey violated one of the Louisiana racial segregation laws and was arrested and appealed his case to the U.S. Supreme Court and lost thus leading to the decision of “Separate-But-Equal.” On June 7, 1892, Homer Plessy boarded a car of the East Louisiana Railroad that was designated by whites for use by white patrons only. Plessey was only one-eighth black but he was still considered and African-American which meant that he must sit in the "colored" car. When Plessy refused to leave the white car and move to the colored car, he was arrested. Plessy's case was heard before Judge John Ferguson one month after his arrest. Plessy argued that his civil rights, stated through the Thirteenth, which granted freedom to the slaves, and Fourteenth, which stated, "no state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, and property, without due process of law" amendments of the U.S. Constitution, had been violated. Ferguson denied this argument and ruled that Louisiana, under state law, had the power to set rules that regulated railroad business within its borders. Plessey tried to appeal the ruling but was denied, so he took the cased to the U.S. Supreme Court in April 1896, arguing that the state of Louisiana had violated the Thirteenth Amendment. Plessey lost the case and still had to pay the fine. This case led to the decision of “separate but equal.” It would become one of the
Robinson 2 most famous decisions in American history. The court found that Louisiana did not violate the Fourteenth