Date of Award

Spring 2007

Document Type

Restricted Thesis

Terms of Use

© 2007 Katherine A. Chamblee. All rights reserved. Access to this work is restricted to users within the Swarthmore College network and may only be used for non-commercial, educational, and research purposes. Sharing with users outside of the Swarthmore College network is expressly prohibited. For all other uses, including reproduction and distribution, please contact the copyright holder.

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


History Department

First Advisor

Allison Dorsey


Chamblee’s thesis chronicles desegregation in Charlotte, North Carolina, and its effects from 1965 to 2001. Using court and government documents, interviews, and periodicals, she argues that the decision in Belk v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg indicated the lack of progress in the community rather than the successful desegregation it declared. While the idea of peaceful integration and diversity became a source of community pride, the reality did not match, and without busing, the problems of school locations in majority-white neighborhoods became more pressing. Despite the egalitarian rhetoric, the changes made in the name of desegregation perpetuated the inequality of Charlotte’s schools.


Recipient of the Paul H. Beik Prize in History, awarded in 2007.