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Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site

Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site - BEST Places to Picnic1515 SE Monroe Street
Topeka, KS 66612-1143

Phone
(785) 354-4273

Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site keeps alive and furthers the legacy of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision that forever changed this country's history.  The National Park Service cares for special places and special stories saved by the American people so that all may experience our heritage. 

Share this American story with those who may visit in person or with those who may visit through our outreach efforts.

The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education (1954) is one of the most pivotal opinions ever rendered by that body. This landmark decision highlights the U.S. Supreme Court's role in affecting changes in national and social policy. 

Often when people think of the case, they remember a little girl whose parents sued so that she could attend an all-white school in her neighborhood. In reality, the story of Brown v. Board is far more complex.

In December, 1952, the U.S. Supreme Court had on its docket cases from Kansas, Delaware, the District of Columbia, South Carolina, and Virginia, all of which challenged the constitutionality of racial segregation in public schools. The U.S. Supreme Court had consolidated these five cases under one name, Oliver Brown et al. v. the Board of Education of Topeka

One of the justices later explained that the U.S. Supreme Court felt it was better to have representative cases from different parts of the country. They decided to put Brown first "so that the whole question would not smack of being a purely Southern one." (For more information on each of the five cases, click on the highlighted state's name above.)

This collection of cases was the culmination of years of legal groundwork laid by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in its work to end segregation. None of the cases would have been possible without individuals who were courageous enough to take a stand against the segregated system.

The site is located at 1515 SE Monroe Street in Topeka, Kansas.  Visitor parking is available in the parking lot across the street from the site. Accessible parking is available in the parking lot behind the site.

A ranger will greet you at the front entrance for a brief orientation to the site. The exhibits are self-guided, and you should allow approximately 90 minutes to view all of them. Click here for a more in-depth description of what you will find at the site.

Did You Know?
The U.S. Supreme Court combined five cases from Delaware, Virginia, South Carolina, Washington, D.C. and Kansas under the heading of Brown v. Board of Education.

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