The Civil & Voting Rights
Amendments
THE CIVIL & VOTING RIGHTS AMENDMENTS
of the U.S. CONSTITUTION

CIVIL RIGHTS- Rights guaranteed to all Americans.

Amendments 13, 14, and 15 were passed after the Civil War, and were mostly targeted to African-American men.  

CIVIL RIGHTS
13th Amendment         - RATIFIED (approved) in 1865, outlawed slavery in the United States.  This was a Federal law.  

14th Amendment        Ratified in 1868, this granted full citizenship to African-Americans (but not Native-Americans because they could not become
citizens).  The second clause guarantees freedom for all citizens, that no state can take away the rights of a citizen of the U.S.  

VOTING RIGHTS
SUFFRAGE (Fighting for the right to vote).
15TH Amendment - Ratified in 1870, this guaranteed that no man, black or white shall be denied the right to vote.  

17th Amendment - Before 1913, state LEGISLATORS (elected representatives who make laws) elected U.S. Senators.  With this amendment the
people would directly choose their two U.S. Senators.

19th Amendment - Granted in 1920, this enabled women in the U.S. to vote regardless of the state that they lived in.  Prior to this amendment, several
states did allow women the right to vote.

23rd Amendment - 1961.  People in Washington DC could now vote in national elections.  

24th Amendment - This Amendment forbade the use of a POLL TAX (fee charged for voting), LITERACY TEST (proof that a person can read or write)
or any other restriction to voting other than proof of citizenship.  This was ratified in 1964.

26th Amendment - The voting age was lowered from 21 to 18 in 1971.