The Civil Rights Act of 1964 ordered all public places and schools to desegregate and serve blacks and whites equally. For four years, from 1964 to 1968, Orangeburg's All Star Bowling Lanes refused to obey the Act and continued to turn away African Americans, including members of a Little League team who were in town for the Little League World Series. Black and white community members and business leaders urged All Star to integrate and filed appeals with the U.S. Justice Department, but all their efforts failed.
On February 6, 1968, 300 students from South Carolina State and Claflin College demonstrated in the parking lot of the bowling alley. They were met by 100 law enforcement officers who beat them with sticks and drove them away.
Two days later on February 8, the violent events known as The Orangeburg Massacre took place on the campus of South Carolina State.