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5 Fun Facts About May 17 In Mississippi History

---Learn Every Day: MS Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history ms To: 618-270-4005---

1. On May 17, 1954, the United States Supreme Court issued its landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education, declaring segregation in public schools unconstitutional. Mississippi, known for its staunch adherence to segregation, initially resisted the ruling and continued to maintain segregated schools for several years.

2. On May 17, 1963, civil rights leader Medgar Evers was assassinated outside his home in Jackson, Mississippi. Evers was the state's first NAACP field director and had been working to register African American voters and desegregate schools and public facilities.

3. May 17, 1969, marked the launch of the first successful geostationary satellite, ATS-1, from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The satellite, designed by NASA and operated by the Mississippi-based communications company BellSouth, revolutionized global communications by providing constant coverage of the Earth's surface.

4. In 1984, on May 17, the Mississippi State Legislature designated the Magnolia as the official state flower. The Magnolia is a popular ornamental tree in Mississippi and has been celebrated in literature, music, and art throughout the state's history.

5. On May 17, 2014, a ceremony was held in Jackson, Mississippi, to unveil a bronze statue of civil rights leader Fannie Lou Hamer. Hamer, a sharecropper from the Mississippi Delta, became a prominent leader in the Civil Rights Movement and worked tirelessly to register African American voters. The statue is located on the grounds of the Mississippi state capitol.
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