Rosa Parks (1913 - 2005) was a seamstress and a dedicated member of the NAACP when she was arrested and jailed for refusing to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery, Alabama city bus. Parks remains perhaps one of the most familiar icons of the Civil Rights Movement, and certainly the most familiar female icon.
Rosa Parks was not the first (and certainly not the last) black citizen to resist segregation laws in the American South, but her act (and her subsequent arrest and conviction) did provide the appropriate inspiration for a one-day citywide boycott of buses in Birmingham. The strike was so successful that leaders decided to continue the boycott. Ultimately, the Montgomery Bus Boycott would last 381 days.