Today in News History: On Sept. 23, 1957, nine black students who had entered Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas were forced to withdraw because of a white mob outside.

L. Alex Wilson, editor of the African-American newspaper Tri-State Defender (Memphis, Tenn.), traveled to Little Rock to cover the standoff over racial integration in public schools. Wilson was kicked repeatedly and choked by the mob while on assignment. He, along with an estimated 40 to 100 reporters, remained as a witness to the Little Rock protests despite the violence he faced.

Explore other milestones of the civil rights movement in the Newseum’s Civil Rights at 50 exhibit. 

Source: Newseum collection

Photo credit: Will Counts/Arkansas Democrat

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