Exactly 59 years ago today, on July 18, 1964, the Harlem Race Riot began after a 15-year-old Black teenager was fatally shot by a white off-duty police officer. As news of the police-involved incident spread, thousands of people took to the streets.
Clashes erupted between the protesters and law enforcement. The uprising spread to the Bedford-Stuyvesant area of Brooklyn. Both neighborhoods were densely populated by Black people who faced systemic discrimination, housing segregation, and limited access to quality education and job opportunities.
According to reports, one person died, over 100 were injured, and more than 450 were arrested. The uprising was a precursor to several other uprisings that took place across the country.