Greensboro Lunch Counter

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On February 1, 1960, four African American college students—Ezell A. Blair, Jr. (now Jibreel Khazan), Franklin E. McCain, Joseph A. McNeil, and David L. Richmond—sat down at this "whites only" lunch counter at the Woolworth's store in Greensboro, North Carolina, and politely asked for service. Their request was refused, and when asked to leave, the students remained in their seats in protest.
For the six months that followed, hundreds of students, civil rights organizations, churches, and members of the community joined the protest and boycotted the store. Their commitment ultimately led to the desegregation of the F.W. Woolworth lunch counter on July 25, 1960. Their peaceful sit-down was a watershed event in the struggle for civil rights and helped ignite a youth-led movement to challenge racial inequality throughout the South.
See more items in
Political and Military History: Political History, General History Collection
National Treasures exhibit
Government, Politics, and Reform
Exhibit:2W Landmark
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
F. W. Woolworth Co.
Related Publication
Kendrick, Kathleen M. and Peter C. Liebhold. Smithsonian Treasures of American History
National Museum of American History. Treasures of American History online exhibition
Related Web Publication
Civil Rights Movement
African American
related event
Greensboro Sit-in
United States: North Carolina, Greensboro
Physical Description
silver (overall color)
salmon (overall color)
average spatial: 38 in x 15 in x 15 in; 96.52 cm x 38.1 cm x 38.1 cm
National Museum of American History
Object Name