National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
In response to a race riot in Springfield, Illinois, an interracial group including veterans of the Niagara Movement met in 1909 to form what became the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). As codified in its founding documents, the NAACP’s goals were the abolition of segregation, discrimination, disenfranchisement, and racial violence, particularly lynching. It pursued its mission through such tactics as legal action, lobbying, peaceful protest, and publicity. Membership declined by the end of the twentieth century, but has subsequently bounced back to more than 2,200 active chapters and a half million members worldwide. Today the NAACP continues to focus on such issues as protecting voting rights, combatting employment inequality, education, health care, and criminal-justice reform.