Lesson 1: NAACP’s Anti-Lynching Campaign in the 1920s

This lesson focuses on the constitutional arguments for and against the enactment of federal anti-lynching legislation in the early 1920s. Students will participate in a simulation game that enacts a fictitious Senate debate of the Dyer Anti-Lynching Bill. As a result of completing this activity, students will gain a better understanding of the federal system, the legislative process, and the difficulties social justice advocates encountered.

Guiding Questions

Why did the NAACP pressure the federal government to enact anti-lynching legislation?

What were the constitutional arguments for and against federal anti-lynching legislation in the 1920s?

Why did Congress fail to enact anti-lynching legislation in the 1920s?

Learning Objectives

Explain the history of the NAACP's anti-lynching campaign in the early 1920s.

Analyze and evaluate the constitutional arguments for and against federal anti-lynching legislation in the 1920s.

Assess the significance of the failure of Congress to enact anti-lynching legislation and its impact on social justice in the United States.