A Brief History of the Sit-In Movement

Greensboro Sit-Ins
Jack Moebes / Corbis

How it Began
On Feb. 1, 1960, at around 4:30 p.m., four black students from North Carolina A&T University — from left, David Richmond, Franklin McCain, Ezell Blair Jr. and Joseph McNeil — entered a Woolworth's in Greensboro, N.C., and, after purchasing merchandise from several counters in the store, sat down at the store's "whites only" lunch counter and ordered some coffee.

Get the Latest Photos from Time.com
Get TIME photos and pictures of the week delivered directly to your inbox.