In 1968-69, when school desegregation in Hyde County threatened the loss of two African American schools, O. A. Peay in Swan Quarter and Davis in Engelhard, many ordinary people came together to lead civil rights protests, boycotts, and marches. Many were arrested and the KKK got involved. In one confrontation, the State Highway Patrol separated 100 armed African Americans and the Klan, but the KKK burned a cross and gunfire erupted between the two groups. No one was hurt. Parents boycotted the schools for one year, and classes were conducted in churches by teachers. After a year a settlement was reached.