This Day in Black History: Feb. 4, 1913

American Civil Rights activist Rosa Parks poses as she works as a seamstress, shortly after the beginning of the Montgomery bus boycott, Montgomery, Alabama, February 1956. (Photo by Don Cravens/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images)

This Day in Black History: Feb. 4, 1913

Civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks is born in Tuskegee, Alabama.

Published February 4th

Civil rights icon Rosa Parks was born in Tuskegee, Ala., on this day in 1913.

On Dec. 1, 1955, Parks refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on a Montgomery, Ala., bus and was arrested. Her courageous stand against racial injustice inspired a boycott of the Montgomery bus system that lasted one year, and would serve as the catalyst for the civil rights movement.

Parks, who died in Oct.  2005, dedicated her life to activism and stood as a symbol of freedom for all. She was honored with some 43 honorary doctorates and many prestigious awards, including the Martin Luther King Jr. Non-Violent Peace Prize.

In 1996, President Bill Clinton awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom award, the highest award given to an American civilian.

Written by Britt Middleton

(Photo by Don Cravens/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images)

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