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Four Greensboro Students Sat Down 56 Years Ago Today to Stand Up for Civil Rights

GREENSBORO — When marking time, 56 years doesn’t come up as especially noteworthy. No special moniker comes with it, like silver anniversary for 25 years or golden anniversary for 50 years.

Yet the anniversary of Feb. 1, 1960 — especially in Greensboro — needs no special name to make it important as the calendar flips each year. This is the day when four young black men sat down at a whites-only lunch counter to stand up for their rights, sparking sit-in protests across the South and reigniting the civil rights movement nationwide.

Today, 56 years later, their story is legend. The plan for peaceful civil disobedience was worked out in their A&T dorm.