After the U.S. Supreme Court invalidated segregation ordinances in Buchanan v. Warley (1917), whites resorted to private restrictive covenants―agreements barring blacks and other minorities from owning or renting property―to maintain residential segregation. For more than twenty years the NAACP initiated lawsuits to nullify restrictive covenants, with few successes. In 1945, J.D. Shelley, a black man, purchased a home in St. Louis covered by a restrictive covenant. Louis Kraemer, a white neighbor, obtained an injunction in the Missouri Supreme Court to bar occupancy. The NAACP appealed Shelley v. Kraemer along with restrictive covenant cases from Detroit and Washington, D.C. to the U.S. Supreme Court. On May 3, 1948 the Court affirmed in Shelley v. Kraemer and McGhee v. Sipes the right of individuals to make restrictive covenants, but held that the Fourteenth Amendment’s equal protection clause prohibited state courts from enforcing the contracts. On the same day, the Court ruled in Urciolo v. Hodge that restrictive covenants could not be enforced by federal courts.