(From the Preface) "On May 18, 1896, the United States Supreme Court ruled that a Louisiana law mandating separate but equal accommodations for "whites" and "coloreds" on intrastate railroads did not violate the constitutional rights of Homer Plessy, who with one-eight African blood was a "colored" person under state law. The Court's decision made possible a legal system of racial segregation in the United States until the ruling of Brown v. Board of Education in 1954..."
"This book is divided into three parts. The first part provides an introduction to the legal issues of the case. The second reprints the Court's opinion in full, including the dissent of Justice John Marshall Harlan, along with representative samples of different views on the "race question" of the time... The final section is a short summary of the strategy developed by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People to have the decision overturned and the consequences of the decision on racial politics in the United States today."