In August 1957 Congress enacted the first civil rights law in modern U.S. history. The Civil Rights Act of 1957 was passed despite the determined resistance from the Senate’s powerful Southern bloc, a coalition of Democratic senators from the eleven racially segregated former Confederate states. This thesis discusses why the Senate’s Southern bloc, perhaps at the height of its power, accepted the passage of the first civil rights law in the United States since the end of Reconstruction, without attempting to filibuster the bill. Based on the Congressional Record’s transcripts from the Senate civil rights debate in 1956 and 1957, I discuss how the southern senators approached the proposed civil rights law, what they sought to achieve and how they perceived the civil rights issue in a broader political context. I find that despite their low numbers, the eighteen southern segregationists organized in the Senate’s Southern caucus, managed to build majority-coalitions that passed substantial amendments to the legislation. Both their ability to gain the initiative and frame the debate in the Senate chamber, and back-room horse-trading, were key to their legislative accomplishments. Several factors contributed to the southerners not obstructing the amended bill through filibusters. Their success at passing amendments played a significant part, as did fear that obstructionist tactics might provoke renewed attempts to change the Senate’s filibuster rules. I also find that electoral considerations likely influenced the southern strategy, as southern power in the Senate’s standing committees was conditioned on the Democrats keeping their Senate majority.