Postwar North Carolina (1945-1975)

The end of World War II didn’t bring peace — at home or abroad. The United States was soon in conflict with the Soviet Union, a “Cold War” that brought constant tensions, a buildup of nuclear weapons, and wars in Korea and Vietnam. The Civil Rights Movement gathered steam after the war and within twenty years had won battles to desegregate schools and public accommodations and to guarantee voting rights for African Americans. But the pace of change in this and other areas, along with the frustrations of the Vietnam War, deeply divided North Carolina and the nation.

Designed for secondary students, part ten of our web-based “digital textbook” combines primary sources with articles from a variety of perspectives, maps, photographs, and multimedia to tell the many stories of North Carolina in the years between 1945 and 1975:

  • the causes and effects of the Cold War
  • change and continuity in postwar life
  • the origins of the Civil Rights Movement
  • the battles for, and impacts of, school desegregation
  • how organizing, political campaign, and nonviolent protest won civil rights for African Americans
  • why the 1960s were a decade of social and political change, and how conservative responses to that change took shape by the 1970s
  • the causes of the Vietnam War, the impact of the war on the men who fought it, and its legacy in the United States

Chapter Contents