Love Finally Conquers All

In its landmark 1967 decision Loving v. Virginia, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down all laws prohibiting interracial marriage.

In 1958, Virginia residents, Mildred Jeter, a black woman and Richard Loving, a white man, travelled to Washington, DC, married, and returned to the small town of Central Point, VA.

An anonymous tip led local police to raid their home in the middle of the night, hoping to find them having sex, also a crime in Virginia. When the cops found the Lovings in bed asleep, they were arrested on the felony charge of "cohabiting as man and wife, against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth" under Virginia's Racial Integrity Act of 1924 (originally passed in 1691).

The local judge stated “"Almighty God" created the races white, black, yellow and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix."

The Lovings pled guilty and were sentenced to one year in prison, suspended for 25 years on condition that they leave the state of Virginia. They did so, moving to the District of Columbia, where they began a series of law suits that ended up before the U.S. Supreme Court with its landmark 1967 decision.
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