Civil Rights Act of 1964

In his first appearance before a joint session of Congress on November 27, 1963, President Lyndon Johnson emphasized that “no memorial oration or eulogy could more eloquently honor President Kennedy’s memory than the earliest possible passage of the civil rights bill for which he fought so long.” That promise, though controversial among congressional leadership in the South and even from Johnson’s own political party, was fulfilled when Johnson signs the 1964 Civil Rights Act (H.R. 7152) at the White House on July 2, 1964. The act outlaws discrimination and segregation in businesses and public places.


Pen used by President Lindon Johnson to sign the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza Collection