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RACIAL GERRYMANDERING AND GOMILLION v. LIGHTFOOT (1960)

In siding with Tuskegee professor Charles Gomillion, the Court ruled that the Alabama Legislature violated the Fifteenth Amendment. In a unanimous decision, the Court held that while states are generally free to establish, change, or even abolish municipal boundaries, that power may not be used to deprive individuals of their vote.

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Law Databases

FindLaw

FindLaw's Cases and Codes section contains provisions of state and federal law. It also contains a record of state and federal case law for trial and appellate courts. The site looks at the arguments made in Gomillion v. Lightfoot. It includes the full text of the court's opinion and a dissent along with a record of various filings and motions leading to the outcome of the case.

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Oyez

Oyez.com provides a variety of resources on Gomillion v. Lightfoot, including links to case text, audio recordings, and references. It also provides a high-level overview of the central issue addressed by the case and the court's holding along along with a visual depiction of the justices on the Court at the time.

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Online Reference Resources

Encyclopedia of Alabama

Well-researched with helpful bibliographies, each Encyclopedia of Alabama entry is an effective jumping-off point for getting the facts of the case. Entries range from landmark court cases to influential jurists and legislators. The Encyclopedia aids in contextualizing Gomillion v. Lightfoot as part of Alabama history and provides implications of the decision for the state's future.

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The Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute

Stanford's MLK Institute published a biography of Charles Gomillion in their King Encyclopedia.

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Archival Resources

Tuskegee News

Tuskegee's local newspaper published an article reflecting on Gomillion v. Lightfoot, providing a nice summary of the case.

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Visit an Alabama Museum!

Alabama Department of Archives and History

www.archives.state.al.us

The George Washington Carver Museum

www.gwcarvermuseum.com

Tuskegee Human and Civil Rights Multicultural Center

www.tuskegeecenter.org

Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site

https://www.nps.gov/tuin