Lester Bates | History of SC Slide Collection

Lester Bates

The growing pressures brought to bear against legal segregation by the federal court system, that culminated in the 1954 Supreme Court decision in "Brown v. The Board of Education" of Topeka, Kansas, made race and the preservation of a rigidly separated political and social system an important political issue. Lester Bates appealed to the fears of South Carolinians who had opposed the integration of the armed forces at Fort Jackson, Parris Island, the Charleston Naval Station, and other bases within the state, and reacted in outrage to the Supreme Court decision of the 1940s that struck down the old Democratic "white primary." His campaign against popular Governor James Byrnes in 1953 was unsuccessful.

Courtesy of the South Caroliniana Library.