According to the NAACP's website, the primary goal of the NAACP at its founding was to promote racial equality in all fields of society and to reduce racial hatred. Some of the most notable causes of the NAACP have been the abolition of segregation and the elimination of Jim Crow laws.
The NAACP explains that the historical purpose of the organization was to promote racial equality in politics, education, the work place and society at large. The organization was founded in response to the horror some citizens felt at a time when public lynching was common and local laws disenfranchised many members of the African American community. The NAACP set out to combat codified bigotry by seeking to overturn unfair laws and to raise awareness about racial injustice.
According to History.com, the founders of the NAACP were ideologically opposed to the gradualism espoused by nationally recognized African American leader Booker T. Washington. Washington asserted that the post-Reconstruction era was not the time to challenge Jim Crow in the South. He called for blacks to build their community through education and entrepreneurship. W.E.B. Du Bois and other early leaders of the NAACP took a much more militant approach. They were active in challenging the "separate but equal" standard established by Plessy v. Ferguson, and their efforts resulted in the famous reversal of the precedent in Brown v. Board of Education.