Civil Rights Act of 1875. Congress approved the Civil Rights Act on March 1, guaranteeing equal rights to black Americans in public accommodations and jury duty. The legislation was invalidated by the Supreme Court in 1883.

Blanche Kelso Bruce (Republican) of Mississippi took his seat in the United States Senate on March 3. He would become the first African-American to serve a full six-year term. Not until 1969 did another black American begin a Senate term.

Mary McLeod Bethune , educator, government official, and African-American leader, was born on July 10 in Mayesville, North Carolina.

Carter G. Woodson, who earned a doctorate in history from Harvard and was known as "The Father of Black History," was born on December 19, 1875, in New Canton, Virginia.
Congress passes the Civil Rights Act of 1785; it prohibits discrimination in places of public accommodation.

Race riots and terrorism. A summer of race riots and terrorism directed at blacks occurred in South Carolina. President Grant sent federal troops to restore order.

A close presidential election. In the presidential election of 1876, the outcome in the Electoral College appeared too close to be conclusive in the campaign of Samuel Tilden (Democrat) versus Rutherford B. Hayes (Republican).