On 22 Feb. 1960, 34 Virginia Union University students, 11 women and 23 men, participated in a sit-in here at Thalhimer's Department Store and were arrested. African Americans could make purchases but were not allowed to try on clothes, eat at the lunch counter, or return purchases. These 34 arrests became part of the wave of mass arrests during the Civil Rights Movement. In June 1963 the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the convictions of the Richmond 34. Subsequently, Thahlhimer’s and other retailers desegregated. The incident inspired the Campaign for Human Dignity that would end legal segregation in Richmond.
Original Sponsor: Department of Historic Resources
Geographic Location: Richmond (City)
Physical Description of Location: Proposed Location - In front of Richmond CenterStage on N 6th Street, between E Broad and E Grace Streets, Richmond, VA 23219.
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