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🚨Governor Wallace Backs Down

June 11, 1963 - Governor George Wallace stepped aside today when confronted by federalized National Guard troops and permitted two Negroes to enroll in the University of Alabama. There was no violence. The Governor, flanked by state troopers, had staged a carefully planned show of defying a Federal Court desegregation order. Mr. Wallace refused four requests this morning from a Justice Department official that he allow Miss Vivian Malone and James A. Hood, both 20 years old, to enter Foster Auditorium and register. This was in keeping with a campaign pledge that he would “stand in the schoolhouse door” to prevent a resumption of desegregation in Alabama’s educational system. The official, Nicholas Katzenbach, Deputy Attorney General, did not press the issue by bringing the students from a waiting car to face the Governor. Instead, they were taken directly to their dormitories. Governor Wallace gave no indication whether he still planned a show of defense Thursday, when another Negro is scheduled to register at the university’s Huntsville branch. He is Dave M. McGlathery, 27, a mathematician for NASA at the George C. Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. However, there was speculation among Wallace aides that the Governor would not seek to interfere with Mr. McGlathery’s registration.


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