Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1865 that abolished slavery and allowed Congress to enact legislation enforcing the ban on slavery.
After the end of the Civil War, in December, 1865, the Thirteenth Amendment was ratified, abolishing slavery in the United States. Section 1 of the amendment prohibited slavery, and section 2 gave Congress the power to enact legislation to enforce the prohibition on slavery. The Supreme Court initially examined the Thirteenth Amendment in the Civil Rights Cases
African Americans in Richmond, Virigina, celebrating Emancipation Day--the anniversary of the abolition of slavery--during the early twentieth century.
The Court had little reason to reexamine the Thirteenth Amendment until the Civil Rights movement
In a later decision, Runyon v. McCrary
Anastaplo, George. The Amendments to the Constitution: A Commentary. Baltimore, Md.: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995. Farber, Daniel A., William N. Eskridge, Jr., and Philip P. Frickey. Constitutional Law: Themes for the Constitution’s Third Century. St. Paul, Minn.: West Publishing, 1993. Foner, Eric. Reconstruction: America’s Unfinished Revolution, 1863-1877. New York: Harper & Row, 1988. Scaturro, Frank J. The Supreme Court’s Retreat from Reconstruction: A Distortion of Constitutional Jurisprudence. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 2000. Tsesis, Alexander. The Thirteenth Amendment and American Freedom: A Legal History. New York: New York University Press, 2004.
Civil Rights Acts
Civil Rights Cases
Congressional power to enforce amendments
Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co.
Race and discrimination
Runyon v. McCrary