"I would like to be known as a person who is concerned about freedom and equality and justice and prosperity for all people" -Rosa Parks
Rosa Louise McCauley was born Februrary 4th, 1913 in Tuskegee, Alabama. She lived with her parents James McCauley, Leona Edwards, and her brother Sylvester McCauley. Rosa's father was a carpenter and her mother was a school teacher.
After her mother and father split up rosa moved to Pine Level in Alabama near Rosa's grandparents house on a farm. This is where Rosa spent much of her time growing up and developing her strong religious background at the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
Rosa was homeschooled by her mother until she was 11, and then she attended a private school called the Montgomery Industrial School for Girls. For Rosa's 9th grade year she attended Booker T. Washinton High School, and later had to drop out because her grandmother fell ill and she needed to be taken care of. After her grandmother passed away Rosa continued to go to school in 10th and 11th grade, but this time she attended Alabama State Teachers College for Negroes and she finished school there after meeting a man named Raymond parks. When Rosa was 19 her and Raymond had gotten married.
When Rosa was a child she was influenced by the Jim Crows law, and this segregated white poeple from colored people. Because of this segregation problem Rosa wittnessed the KKK come by her house several times, which taught her a lot about how serious the situation was, she also became very aware of her rights as a black woman. Rosa was very kind to the whites and believed that no one should get treated badly no matter how much the whites seemed to hate colored people at the time, so she wanted to change how the whites felt about the colored people somehow.
After Rosa got married she was an active member in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). She was well aware of prejudice people and segregation when she started riding the city bus to work everyday. She was always told to sit in the back, she is known for standing her ground and sticking up for what she believed in. She started the Montgomery Bus Boycott which played a great role in the Civil Right Movement. When Rosa Parks finally got recognized for her brave stand on the bus she was awarded a multiple number of honors. Some things she got awarded were the Rosa Parks Peace Prize in 1994, Clinton gave her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1996, and the Congressional Gold Medal in 1999. The NAACP awarded her their highest honor, the Spingarn Medal.
After everything Rosa did for the United States and the Civil Rights Movement she sadly passed away on October 24th, 2005 in her Detroit home when she was 94 years old. Before she died in 2005 she was diagnosed with pregressive dementia in 2003. Before she was buried her casket layed in the rotunda (symbolic and physical heart of the U.S. Capitol) for two days to be honored. This is where the Presidents normally get put when they pass away, so Rosa was very well respected.