September 12, 1956
Though the desegregation of Kentucky’s public schools proceeded with a minimum of difficulty, there were some trouble spots. In the first days of school in 1956 at Sturgis, in Union County, Kentucky, nine African American students attempted to attend the all-white high school. Turned back by a jeering mob, they appealed to Governor A. B. “Happy” Chandler, who activated the Kentucky National Guard and the Kentucky State Police, their mission, to maintain law and order, and ensure that all students had the opportunity to attend public school. The following morning Guard and State Police personnel held back the crowd as nine black students entered the school at Sturgis. At the same time, a similar confrontation was taking place at Clay in Webster County, Kentucky. There almost all the white students boycotted the grade school when two black students enrolled. The National Guard and State Police kept order outside an almost empty school.

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