1791: Bill of Rights added to Constitution

1833: Supreme Court rules, In Barron v. Baltimore, that Bill of Rights applies only to U.S. government, not to states

1868: 14th Amendment makes it illegal for states to deny blacks their rights

1896: In Plessy v. Ferguson, Court says racial segregation does not violate 14th Amendment

1919: In Schenck v. U.S., Court upholds Espionage Act, saying free speech can be restricted during wartime

1925–1932: Court rules 14th Amendment requires states to protect freedom of speech, religion, and press

1943: In W.V. State Board of Education v. Barnette, Court rules students can refuse to salute flag under First Amendment

1954: In Brown v. Board of Education, Court rules 14th Amendment outlaws segregation

1961–1972: Court rules 14th Amendment requires states to protect criminal rights as listed in Amendments 4, 5, 6, and 8

1964: In Griswold v. Connecticut, Court rules that state laws banning use of birth control violate right to privacy

1972: Court rules wiretapping is a "search" as covered in 4th Amendment

1973: In Roe v. Wade, Court rules right to privacy protects woman's right to an abortion

1988: In Hazelwood School District v. Kulheimer, Court rules schools can censor student press and other activities

Adapted from Scholastic Search.