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        Carl Maxey: A Civil Rights Pioneer in the Northwest

        Based on the biography by Jim Kershner of the same name, KSPS's Carl Maxey: A Fighting Life is the inspiring life story of a man who changed attitudes about civil and gender rights in Eastern Washington. He was a tireless fighter for racial equality and justice on the state and national level.  

        With these video segments and accompaning learning guide, students will analyze key terms related to the themes of civil rights and activism. They will also gain a deeper understanding of the contributions local leaders made to the civil rights movement across the United States. Visit KSPS Education for additional educator resources.

         

        Carl Maxey - Type A Gandhi

        Despite humble beginnings, Carl Maxey became a key figure in the civil rights movement in Spokane and the Pacific Northwest.

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        Carl Maxey - Spokane’s Own Form of Segregation

        Though not as overt as the Jim Crow South, Spokane had its own form of segregation that affected the African-American community.

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        Carl Maxey - The Jesuit Connection

        In 1936 Fr Burns of the Sacred Heart Mission sent Carl Maxey from Spokane Children’s Home to the Reservation School in De Smet, ID for a better education.

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        Carl Maxey - Power Players in Spokane

        Carl Maxey worked at the Spokane Club during his Gonzaga Prep days. The club’s members were rich, powerful, and white. The workers were African-American and could not become members.

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        Carl Maxey -Fighting for Double Victory

        During WWII, Carl Maxey served in a segregated military as a medic, fighting for his country overseas and against racism back home.

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        Carl Maxey - Spokane’s First African-American Lawyer

        In a significant first, Carl Maxey was the first African-American to pass the bar exam in Eastern Washington, allowing him to challenge the status quo using the courts.

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        Carl Maxey - Voter Rights Freedom Summer

        In the summer of 1964 (“Freedom Summer”), Carl Maxey traveled to Mississippi and worked to release 100 protesters from jail.

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        Carl Maxey - Seattle 7 Defense

        During the height of the Vietnam War, seven protesters were arrested for damaging federal property in Seattle. Carl became part of their defense team.

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        Carl Maxey - City Leaders Look to Maxey

        Established and upcoming leaders looked to Carl Maxey for inspiration and guidance in race relations in the community of Spokane and Washington State.

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        Carl Maxey - A Fighting Legacy

        Upon Carl Maxey’s death, Spokane lost a civil rights champion but his legacy of fighting for those in need and his contributions to civil rights lives on.

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        Contributor: KSPS Public Television

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