Photos from "The Loving Story: Photographs by Grey Villet," currently on exhibit at the International Center of Photography in New York City (1133 Avenue of the Americas at 43rd Street). This exhibition of Villet's photographs, taken in 1965 while on assignment for Life magazine, focus on the Loving family's life at their home in Virginia.
This June marks the 45th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in Loving v. Virginia, which struck down state laws prohibiting interracial marriage. The case was brought by an interracial couple, Mildred and Richard Loving. Mildred was black and Richard was white, and after they were legally married in the District of Columbia, the state of Virginia prosecuted them under its Racial Integrity Act of 1924. They were told to either accept a one-year jail sentence or leave the state of Virginia for 25 years.
Then-attorney general Robert F. Kennedy referred the couple to the ACLU, and with the ACLU’s representation, the case worked its way up to the Supreme Court. In 1967, the Court’s unanimous decision struck down all remaining state bans on interracial marriage. It took South Carolina until 1998 and Alabama until 2000 to officially amend their states’ constitutions to remove language prohibiting miscegenation.
The Loving Story is an HBO documentary that chronicles the struggles of Mildred and Richard Loving, an interracial couple living in Virginia in the 1950s and the ACLU's role in their landmark Supreme Court Case, Loving v. Virginia. The Loving Story premieres on February 14, 2012, at 9 p.m. on HBO.