Melba Pattillo Beals's Warriors Don't Cry is the factual story of the Little Rock Nine, a group of nine African-American students who enrolled in Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas. The students were initially prevented from entering the racially segregated school, but were provided entrance at the intervention of President Eisenhower. The students had to suffer throughout the school years and Warriors Don't Cry is the story of those events.
Ernest Green was the only one of the Little Rock Nine who graduated from the school after suffering through daily harassment and intermittent violence. Elizabeth Eckford was the first black student to enter the school and had to suffer several incidents throughout the year, including being chased by an angry mob and thrown down a set of stairs. There are no specific mentions of any incident against Jefferson Thomas or Terrence Roberts. Carlotta Walls LaNier returned to the school and graduated in 1960. Minnijean Brown was suspended from the school for dropping her tray containing a bowl of chillies and splashing two white boys who were pushing chairs in her way, and later expelled for calling a girl who hit her with a purse "white trash." No specific experiences of Gloria Ray Karlmark's or Thelma Mothershed's are mentioned. The author had to face worse herself as during one incident acid was thrown into her eyes to blind her. Some girls also tried to burn her by trapping her in a toilet stall and dropping burning papers on her.