Current Location:
Kirkhof Center -> 1st Floor (KC)
Location Notes:
KC; 1st Floor; Suite 1240; Inside Room 1222

Elizabeth Eckford as She Enters Little Rock Central High

GVSU Collections
Poster Reproduction of Original Photograph by Johnny Jenkins
Artworks - Height: 21 in Width: 16 in
Historical Context:
Elizabeth Ann Eckford (b. 1941) is one of the Little Rock Nine, a group of African-American students who, in 1957, were the first black students ever to attend classes at the previously all-white Little Rock Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. Eckford started attending the school after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka that racial segregation in educational facilities was unconstitutional. The nine students encountered an angry mob of over 400 individuals, including the Arkansas National Guard, who were tried to deny their access into the school. This snapshot of September 4, 1957 was taken by Johnny Jenkins of the United Press, shows Eckford being followed and threatened by an angry white mob. This photograph and other images from the day’s startling events were circulated around the US and the world by the press, bringing to light the reality of what young African-American students were faced with during desegregation.