Ruby Bridges – Then and Now

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When I came across this brave little girl years ago I was riveted to the spot.   What a brave little girl, I thought, but even more brave were her parents.   I came across this picture again recently and I wanted to know what became of her.  So I sent an email and someone responded to say she was doing fine and I am elated that her bravery did not go in vain.

Ruby Bridges was born in Tylertown, Mississippi on September 8, 1954 at a time when there was deep segregation. At six, she was the first black child to attend an all white elementary school in the South.

RubyBridges

To have to be escorted to school by her mother and US Marshals just to get an education, still brings tears to my eyes.   I am from Jamaica so I cannot pretend to know what she went through, but it does not take a rocket scientist to know that this could not have been easy for either Ruby or her parents.   I would want to also say that this could not have been easy for those US Marshals either.

Bridges’ bravery paved the way for continued Civil Rights action and she’s shared her story with future generations in educational forums.

In 1960 Ruby was one of six African Americans to pass a very difficult test that they had to take to determine if they were fit to attend this all white school. Even though six passed, only Ruby attended the William Frantz  Elementary School; which was just five blocks from where she lived.  This bold move by here parents and the authorities had disastrous effects for the entire family.

RubyDuo

Today Ruby has weathered the storm and stands tall.  She stands as a living testimony that all things are possible.

In 1999, Bridges formed the Ruby Bridges Foundation, headquartered in New Orleans. The foundation promotes the values of tolerance, respect, and appreciation of all differences. Through education and inspiration, the foundation seeks to end racism and prejudice.

She joins Anne Frank and Ryan White in the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis because of her contribution to integration in the educational system in America.

Ruby

Long Live Ruby Bridges!

 


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53 Responses

  1. Eileen xo says:

    This is a wonderful reminder of a brave young lady and how much she has helped advance equality. We still have learning but I admire her very much! I cannot imagine what she and her family had to go through! She is a role model for me to overcome and stand strong!

  2. Great post! Thanks God the world has changed this much! And there are many thing to improve in our society

  3. This is the most positive story I have heard all year! Ruby Bridges is an inspiration to all who face adversity.

  4. How amazing! As a child growing up in such a hateful society I bet she never thought she would live to see a black president.

  5. What a powerful moment to see her looking at the picture of her self as a girl.

  6. So good to see such a courageous girl all grown into a beautiful woman, angels were with her that day!

  7. Going to school must of been so difficult for her. Thanks for teaching me about her amazing life.

  8. Amy Jones says:

    What an inspirational post! I’ve never heard about her what an amazing story

  9. Laurie says:

    Truly inspirational

  10. Jenn Peters says:

    Great post! I knew of Ruby Bridges, but it’s so neat to see her recognized still today.

  11. top5life says:

    She’s an incredible woman with phenomenol personality. Very motivating post.

  12. Reading stories like this today you just can’t imagine a time when this sort of attitude existed, especially where I live (I know segregation still existed today). To be so brazen about their attitudes to other human beings still astounds me!

  13. Ana De-Jesus says:

    What a true icon Ruby is, it is so sad what she must have been through and conquered to get here x

  14. Heather says:

    I’m sure she has a lot to share about those days. Hopefully life since then has treated her well.

  15. The “herstory” of our people and culture is so rich! Thank you for sharing this and hopefully it will never be forgotten.

  16. Elizabeth O. says:

    Long live Ruby indeed! She deserves all the recognition. I cannot imagine what she had to go through but she stood by her education and got the best possible reward. She is truly an icon, a very admirable and remarkable human being!

  17. Such an inspirational piece! Thanks for sharing all about this amazing little girl!

  18. I had the children read a book about her awhile ago.
    I really should do so again.
    So very inpsiring.
    Thank you.

  19. Laci says:

    Awesome story !!! Love it.

  20. tara pittman says:

    So glad that her parents took a stand. Now everyone can get an education.

  21. Amazing story of a brave girl and parents!

  22. Amazing story of a brace girl and patents!

  23. Robin Rue (@massholemommy) says:

    I can’t even imagine what it was like for black people back then. So much ignorance, but she sounds like an amazing woman today 🙂

  24. BlackMail4u says:

    She is truly a phenomenal woman. Her father lost his job and her grandparents were kicked off their land. Her story also inspired the famous Norman Rockwell painting in which she is featured with the US Marshals. At one point, she would eat nothing but packaged foods because she thought someone might try to poison her

  25. Excellent post! Nice to get to know Ruby better. Very inspiring!