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Constitutional Law Keyed to Barnett
Strauder v. West Virginia
Citation:100 U.S. 303 (1880)
Congress passed the Civil Rights Act 1875 to respond to violent attacks by white militias on black communities in the South after the Civil War. The law guaranteed citizens (regardless of race) access to public accommodations, and prohibited states from limiting jury service to members of a certain race (and allowed lawsuits brought under those laws to be tried in federal courts, instead of state court).
Taylor Strauder was charged with murdering his wife. Strauder, a black man, challenged a West Virginia law that limited jury service to white men; he argued that the law denied him rights that were afforded to white citizens. He argued that under the Civil Rights Act of 1875, he was entitled to move his case to federal court from state court, because the West Virginia law denied him equal protection of the laws.
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