In this WSB newsfilm clip from November or December, 1960, white women drive Daisy and Yolanda Gabrielle to William Frantz Public School; white segregationists protest the school's integration; and white men get into cars parked in a lot in New Orleans, Louisiana.
The clip begins showing two cars parked in front of a building, presumably the housing complex where Daisy Gabrielle and her six-year-old daughter, Yolanda, live with their family. Daisy and Yolanda Gabrielle exit the building and get into the back seat of a car driven by an older woman. Two cars then pull away from the curb and drive down the street. Next, crowds of white men and women stand on sidewalks in front of homes and talk to a police officer. Daisy and Yolanda Gabrielle are then seen leaving William Frantz Public School; Daisy holds Yolanda's hand and waves papers in front of her face.
The clip breaks and then focuses on cars parked in a lot. The images not always stable and from time to time the camera jostles. A white man is seen in profile and then looks directly at the camera; the man may be James Gabrielle, Yolanda's father. The camera focuses again on several cars in a park-like setting; trees line the edge of the lot. From time to time, a white man gets in a car and drives away. The clip ends with the camera focusing on a tree and on cars in the lot.
In 1956, federal judge J. Skelly Wright overturned New Orleans school segregation laws and ordered the Orleans Parish School Board to submit desegregation plans. Although the legislature tried to pass laws preventing the school integration, Judge Wright ruled the legislation unconstitutional and in 1960 ordered the school board to begin a grade-a-year integration plan beginning with the first grade that fall. Orleans Parish School Board officials accepted 135 applications for African American students seeking to transfer to white schools. From those applications the school board chose four African American girls to integrate the first grade in William Frantz and McDonogh 19 elementary schools on November 14, 1960. Officials from Norfolk, Virginia, who had already undergone a court-ordered integration, warned school board members not to begin desegregation with poor schools. The board's decision to ignore this advice and integrate Ninth Ward schools caused extra tension among local parents. Many parents felt their children were being sacrificed to integration and resented that the children of school board members, community leaders, and even Judge Wright still attended segregated schools. White parents concerned with threats made by the school board and the legislature to close the schools rather than allow integration formed the "Save Our Schools" committee, which petitioned for open schools and even volunteered to integrate two schools in more affluent sections of the city. White segregationists, angered by the school integration and the choice of poor schools, demonstrated every morning and afternoon at the Frantz and McDonogh 19 schools, screaming and throwing things at the children and their parents who escorted them to school. When Daisy Gabrielle could no longer take Yolanda safely to school, members of the "Save Our Schools" committee volunteered to drive them to school. Citizen Council members upset by the action of "Save Our Schools" members published lists of their license plates and names. After Daisy's husband, James Gabrielle, lost his job for allowing Yolanda to attend an integrated school, the family left the state and moved to Rhode Island.
Title supplied by cataloger.
The Civil Rights Digital Library received support from a National Leadership Grant for Libraries awarded to the University of Georgia by the Institute of Museum and Library Services for digital conversion and description of the WSB-TV Newsfilm Collection.
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Cite as: WSB-TV newsfilm clip of white women driving Daisy Gabrielle and her first grade daughter, Yolanda, to the newly integrated William Frantz Public School; white demonstrators protesting the school's integration; and cars parked in a parking lot in New Orleans, Louisiana, 1960 November or December, WSB-TV newsfilm collection, reel 0160, 49:09/51:00, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, The University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Ga, as presented in the Digital Library of Georgia.