Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965

Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965

Davis W. Houck
David E. Dixon
Copyright Date: 2009
Pages: 352
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt2tvf4t
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    Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965
    Book Description:

    Historians have long agreed that women--black and white--were instrumental in shaping the civil rights movement. Until recently, though, such claims have not been supported by easily accessed texts of speeches and addresses. With this first-of-its-kind anthology, Davis W. Houck and David E. Dixon present thirty-nine full-text addresses by women who spoke out while the struggle was at its most intense.

    Beginning with the Brown decision in 1954 and extending through the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the editors chronicle the unique and important rhetorical contributions made by such well-known activists as Ella Baker, Fannie Lou Hamer, Daisy Bates, Lillian Smith, Mamie Till-Mobley, Lorraine Hansberry, Dorothy Height, and Rosa Parks. They also include speeches from lesser-known but influential leaders such as Della Sullins, Marie Foster, Johnnie Carr, Jane Schutt, and Barbara Posey.

    Nearly every speech was discovered in local, regional, or national archives, and many are published or transcribed from audiotape here for the first time. Houck and Dixon introduce each speaker and occasion with a headnote highlighting key biographical and background details. The editors also provide a general introduction that places these public addresses in context.Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965gives voice to stalwarts whose passionate orations were vital to every phase of a movement that changed America.

    eISBN: 978-1-60473-760-8
    Subjects: Sociology, History

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. I-VI)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. VII-VIII)
  3. Introduction Recovering Women’s Voices from the Civil Rights Movement
    (pp. IX-2)
    DWH and DED

    Eight years to the day of emmett till’s murder, civil rights leaders, supporters, and the idle curious descended on the Mall in Washington, D.C. They began gathering on Wednesday morning, August 28, 1963, at the bended knee of Lincoln, a hundred years after the Emancipation Proclamation, to march “for jobs and freedom.” They also assembled to register support for the Kennedy administration’s pending civil rights bill—progressive action foisted on the administration by the triumphs of Birmingham and Tuscaloosa. Organized by Bayard Rustin, crowds quickly swelled to more than a quarter-million. That afternoon the nation listened as its leading moral...

  4. Mary McLeod Bethune JUNE 11, 1954, DETROIT, MICHIGAN
    (pp. 3-9)

    When first i heard of the supreme court decision, i lifted my voice to utter the first inspiration of my heart—and I said,

    “Let the people praise Thee, O God!

    Let ALL the people praise thee.”

    That pronouncement should have been met with praises to God, not only from those who enjoyed the new freedom but from all of America. For America that moment, under God

    had a new birth of freedom

    and our government of the people, by the people and for the people shall not perish from the earth.

    The immortal Lincoln was a prophet whose words...

  5. Sarah Patton Boyle NOVEMBER 7, 1954, NAACP, GAINESVILLE, VIRGINIA
    (pp. 10-16)

    There’re two points which I wish to make today. I doubt if many of you will concede either now. I hope you’ll be more inclined to when I’m through. The first is that opposition to integration is far less than it seems. And the second is that most prejudiced southerners can be changed.

    I’m a faculty wife at the University of Virginia and, I think, a pretty typical southerner. I was there when Gregory Swanson, our first colored student, was admitted by order of the Supreme Court, and I think that what I discovered about my own attitudes and those...

  6. Mamie Till Bradley OCTOBER 29, 1955, BETHEL AME CHURCH, BALTIMORE, MARYLAND
    (pp. 17-32)

    During the last two months, i have found it very necessary to talk to God quite a few times.

    When I first found out that Emmett was kidnapped, I was just so upset and so shocked I didn’t know what to do. So, having been dependent on my mother most of my life, the first thing that I did was to call her. I thought that when I got to mother’s house, she could take care of everything. She could handle it. This would be another burden that I could dump on her. When I got to mother’s house, she...

  7. Daisy S. Lampkin NOVEMBER 9, 1955, NATIONAL COUNCIL OF NEGRO WOMEN, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 33-36)

    Born: mayesville, south carolinA—July 10, 1875

    DIED: Daytona Beach, Florida—May 18, 1955

    AGE: Seventy-nine Years, Ten Months, Eight Days

    This is what may appear on the tombstone of America’s beloved Mary McLeod Bethune—but the story of the life of this great American will be on the hearts and in the memories of countless millions. She came, she saw, she dedicated, she served. She selected to dedicate her early life to the children in the turpentine sections of Florida. How often have we listened to her tell the story of the beginning of the little school with one...

  8. Rosa Parks AUGUST 21, 1956, PUBLIC SCHOOL INTEGRATION WORKSHOP, MONTEAGLE, TENNESSEE
    (pp. 37-40)

    Mr. pierce, mrs. clark, and ladies and gentlemen, the whole cause of our trouble in Montgomery, as anywhere else, is segregation which is the evil that exists, the artificial legal segregation, and the transportation is very painful, very humiliating, and the drivers made very good use of it. Our city ordinance, of course, says that a driver has police powers in which he can enforce segregation by moving his passengers. If he desires a person to move from one seat, there should be another for this person to take it. If a colored person is sitting too near the front...

  9. Agnes E. Meyer NOVEMBER 17, 1956, NATIONAL COUNCIL OF NEGRO WOMEN, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 41-49)

    My friends, the theme of this convention is, “women working together can surmount barriers to civil and human rights.” I agree. For women share so many profound interests, especially the well-being of the family, that they can do much to soften the tensions that now surround the problem of racial equality. But we shall not be effective in emphasizing the need for peaceful cooperation, unless we make an effort to be far less emotional and far more rational than most of the men.

    Now, to be rational means that we use observation, experiment, and the test of experiment by its...

  10. Katharine Du Pre Lumpkin MARCH 1957, MILLS COLLEGE, OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA
    (pp. 50-60)

    I have chosen the subject “social change and the southern Mind,” for obvious reasons. Today the Southern states are experiencing social change in a marked degree in one important area of their life. The long-established institution of racial segregation in this biracial section is undergoing an apparently rapid transformation. Under this pattern of segregation, the Negro and white populations, by law and by what has seemed to be immutable custom, have been living their lives separated and set apart in numerous and significant ways. True, the changes that are coming to a climactic point today have been under way for...

  11. Frances H. Williams MARCH 3, 1957, NORTH CAROLINA STATE CONFERENCE, NATIONAL STUDENT YWCA
    (pp. 61-71)

    In this third and last conversation together, we must decide what a responsible individual, living in our South, can and must do for his own salvation and for the salvation of the land we love.

    First and foremost, I think we must understand what—if anything—we are about to lose with the inevitable removal of legal segregation. We must come to understand, whether we are Northern or Southern, whether we are black or white.

    Now, at first glance, you may say to yourself I have nothing to lose, only all to gain. But that is not so. For no...

  12. Edith S. Sampson APRIL 12, 1957, REGIONAL CONFERENCE OF THE LINKS, KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI
    (pp. 72-80)

    “Platforms,” said clarence darrow, the famed attorney for the defense, “are not the proper forums for spreading doubts, the miscellaneous audience wants to listen to a man”—and, I suppose, also to a woman—“who knows. How he knows is of no concern to them. Such an audience wishes to be told, and especially wants to be told what it already believes.”

    Most people know Clarence Darrow because of his brilliant defense in the Leopold trial. He was a smart man, Clarence Darrow, great enough, wise enough that the Adult Education Council in Chicago is now preparing to celebrate the...

  13. Johnnie Carr JUNE 1957, WOMEN’S AUXILIARY BAPTIST STATE CONVENTION OF ILLINOIS, CHICAGO, ILLINOIS
    (pp. 81-87)

    This story has been told many times by many people in many places. It seems to hold something that no other story told of a people struggling for Freedom and Human Dignity has. Its beginning is very strange. Its place is even more startling for it would seem that a story such as this one would have had its beginning in some place where people were already fairly free, and its beginning, it seems, should have had prepared plans for such a tremendous program. The place was Montgomery Alabama, the capital of Alabama, known to many as the Cradle of...

  14. Lorraine Hansberry MAY 12, 1959, WOMEN’S SCHOLARSHIP ASSOCIATION LUNCHEON ROOSEVELT UNIVERSITY, CHICAGO, ILLINOIS
    (pp. 88-97)

    I am going to speak to you about contemporary american drama. Or, at least, I am going to use contemporary American drama as a point of departure to discuss what I believe are some of the most significant ideas and attitudes at large in our present day culture. I do not believe that this is a narrow frame of reference but a quite inclusive one, because surely the theatre is and always has been an excellent source of analysis and even assessment of, at least, Western civilizations. That is, if one would know something of the social agonies which beset...

  15. Dorothy Tilly MAY 22, 1959, CONGRESSIONAL SUBCOMMITTEE, CIVIL RIGHTS HEARING, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 98-111)

    I am dorothy rogers tilly. I like to go, though, under the title given to me when I was married, Mrs. Milton Eben Tilly. It has been quite an honor to be the wife of my husband.

    I am of the South, born and bred in the South, and have held offices in the Methodist Church, statewide and southwide, and these offices have been in the field of human rights. I have kept my fingers on the pulse of the South, and I know its heartbeats and its heartthrobs, and they are my heartbeats and my heartthrobs.

    For almost a...

  16. Della D. Sullins OCTOBER 6, 1959, TUSKEGEE CIVIC ASSOCIATION, TUSKEGEE, ALABAMA
    (pp. 112-117)

    When change is in evidence, it is logical to assume that there has been an awakening. Change, as we speak of it at this time, means “the passing from one condition to another.” With change must come an awakening, a realization, and a reaction. One should not become too upset by resistance to change. Primarily, this is a natural reaction.

    It is not with the fact that there has been massive resistance to change in the South that we are concerned, nearly so much as with the effect which it has produced and is producing.

    Peacefully the South has slept,...

  17. Barbara Posey JUNE 24, 1960, 51ST ANNUAL NAACP CONVENTION, MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA
    (pp. 118-122)

    Tonight, i would like for you to take an imaginary trip across the beautiful country that we call America. I want you to see the skyscrapers of New York, the wheat fields of Kansas, the cotton fields of Texas, and the swamps of Florida. I want you to see men of different religions, economic, political, social, and racial backgrounds.

    I want you to see America, my America.

    You are familiar with the scenery, the history, the customs, the traditions, and the glory of this country. You, as I, love our country and its ideals.

    As you travel in America you...

  18. Priscilla Stephens JULY 1, 1960, KPFA BROADCAST, BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA
    (pp. 123-134)

    I certainly wish i had all of you with me in tallahassee; you seem all to be very interested in this movement somewhat, and we can certainly use you in the South. I wish I was up here planning a demonstration, a sit-in demonstration, rather than just telling you about what we’ve done so far.

    Last summer, my sister and I when were on our vacation in Miami, were invited to a CORE meeting, and CORE stands for the Congress of Racial Equality. We were invited to attend this meeting, and we did. We were so impressed by what CORE...

  19. Casey Hayden AUGUST 1960, NATIONAL STUDENT ASSOCIATION CONVENTION, MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA
    (pp. 135-138)

    I understand we on this panel are to represent different shades of opinion on the sit-ins. While I may fall within a certain shade of opinion, I speak neither for the sit-inners nor the Southern white, but only for myself. I find the sit-in question to be essentially an ethical question, not a question of expediency or emotion. I do not mean this to be abstract, for an ethical question means a personal decision. None of you can make this decision for me, nor would I attempt to make it for any of you.

    Now an ethical question is both...

  20. Modjeska M. Simkins DECEMBER 15, 1960, BILL OF RIGHTS DINNER, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 139-147)

    Civil liberty has been defined as the liberty of freedom of an individual to conduct his own affairs as he pleases, with only so much legal restraint as the public good may require.

    Blackstone said that “Political or civil liberty is no other than national liberty so far restrained as is expedient for the general advantage of the common good.”

    In addition, individual liberty is honestly recognized as freedom from restraint in the performance of rights outside of government control, such as the freedom of opinion and of conscience.

    The Bill of Rights, which we recognize in profound observance here...

  21. Charlotta Bass FEBRUARY 12, 1961, FIRST UNITARIAN CHURCH, LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA
    (pp. 148-153)

    If I attempted to tell a brief history of the advent of the white Man on the American scene, I would take it from the pen of a White Man, who would find no language strong enough to paint that history.

    This morning, however, the First Unitarian Church and its eminent pastor, the Reverend Stephen H. Fritchman, have granted me the privilege of fifteen minutes to tell you the story of the advent of the Negro in our country, America. Just how I am going to crowd what is in my mind on this subject in the time allotted, I...

  22. Diane Nash AUGUST 1961, NATIONAL CATHOLIC CONFERENCE FOR INTERRACIAL JUSTICE, DETROIT, MICHIGAN
    (pp. 154-168)

    I see no alternative but that this text must be a personal interpretation of my own experience within the region known as “Dixie.”

    My participation in the movement began in February 1960, with the lunch counter “sit-ins.” I was then a student at Fisk University, but several months ago I interrupted my schoolwork for a year in order to work full time with the movement. My occupation at present is coordinating secretary for the Nashville Nonviolent Movement.

    I should not wish to infer that I speak for the southern movement, for I think that there is no single person who...

  23. Lillian Smith SEPTEMBER 2, 1961, ALL SOULS UNITARIAN CHURCH, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 169-178)

    You may think it strange that i have chosen to talk to you about mobs when you have recently been in the thick of them, and ghosts, when you have just returned from Mississippi—Which is the swampiest ghost country I know.

    But I would like to, for there are things you Freedom Riders may have missed while you were down there. Usually, when you are dodging rocks thrown by a mob or climbing out of a burning bus set on fire by a mob, you don’t have much time to get acquainted with either mob or ghost.

    It is...

  24. Katie Louchheim NOVEMBER 17, 1961, NATIONAL COUNCIL OF NEGRO WOMEN, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 179-185)

    I am delighted to be here this evening with the members of the National Council of Negro Women. For me this is a very special occasion. Those of us who work to expand the role of women, to improve their status and enlarge their opportunities for participation in the affairs of our great country, are always glad to talk with an audience dedicated to these same principles and purposes.

    Your president, Dorothy Height, richly deserves the honor you have bestowed upon her in selecting her as your leader. She has long been successful at finding new ways in which you...

  25. Anne Braden SEPTEMBER 27, 1962, ANNUAL CONVENTION OF SOUTHERN CHRISTIAN LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE, BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA
    (pp. 186-198)

    I am happy to be here today and to be a part of this meeting. I am happy because when I come to Alabama, it is coming home. I used to work in Birmingham, just after I finished school some sixteen yeas ago, and I grew up just sixty miles from here in the town that has recently become infamous, Anniston. Coming back to my home state and my home town is not always a happy experience—I rarely have occasion to be proud of them and what they are doing, and it would be the understatement of the year...

  26. Marion King NOVEMBER 1962, STUDENT NONVIOLENT COORDINATING COMMITTEE MEETING, NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE
    (pp. 199-201)

    My husband has said that he cannot always buy nonviolence and that had he been present when the incident occurred at Camilla, he would have had to die trying to protect me. But let me say that we have both learned many lessons in nonviolence during the past year, and we are still learning.

    As I stand here now and look into your faces I feel that we are attending a homecoming, for I see so many people whom we have had the pleasure of having in our home at some time or other during the last critical year in...

  27. Margaret C. McCulloch NOVEMBER 1962, SOUTH CAROLINA COUNCIL ON HUMAN RELATIONS
    (pp. 202-212)

    “The spirit of man is the candle of the lord.” This is our faith, that every man has in him some spark of God’s own nature. We seek to foster, not quench, that spark in every human being.

    Interracial hostilities, injustices, rejections of each other contradict this view and aim. Hence, we view as sins white supremacy and also hatred of whites by Negroes.

    But if these are spiritual matters why do we find this particular sin apparently distributed on a geographical basis, at least as far as concerns resistance to desegregation? Because we areembodiedspirits. We tend to...

  28. Jane Schutt MAY 22, 1963, CONGRESSIONAL SUBCOMMITTEE, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 213-219)

    Mrs. schutt. my name is mrs. wallis schutt. I live in jackson, Mississippi. I am presently serving as chairman of the Mississippi Advisory Committee. Having been an active working member of this committee since its formation in December of 1959, I hold strong and deep convictions concerning the absolute and vital necessity for the extension of the life of the commission for the next four years. To question the need for or the value of legislation to this effect seems to me to be not only unwise, but also most unrealistic.

    There are many things that could be said in...

  29. Dorothy Height OCTOBER 5, 1963, FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, SELMA, ALABAMA
    (pp. 220-223)

    Dear [jim] forman and friends, i think anyone who has the opportunity to be here tonight can only be uplifted by your spirit and your courage. In fact, it makes me proud to be an American and to be an American Negro, to be in this room tonight. Because many of us across this country long to see the day when the kinds of things that we’re working for will no longer be necessary because it will just be taken for granted that to be a citizen is to be a citizen and the rights for one will be the...

  30. Marie Foster OCTOBER 5, 1963, FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, SELMA, ALABAMA
    (pp. 224-227)

    Master of ceremonies, platform guests, ladies and gentlemen, girls and boys, I’m happy to see all of you tonight. We welcome you back to our sixteenth mass meeting. We welcome you to our first-class citizenship council. Our continuation of theme, tonight, is time: time to accept and time to refuse. What is it time for the Negro to accept and refuse? It is time for the Negro to accept the fact that discrimination is worldwide, and other countries express horror at the United States’ handling of the racial problem. And it is time to refuse to compromise and cooperate with...

  31. Pauli Murray NOVEMBER 14, 1963, NATIONAL COUNCIL OF NEGRO WOMEN, LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 228-240)

    Negro women, historically, have carried the dual burden of Jim Crow and Jane Crow. They have not always carried it graciously but they have carried it effectively. They have shared with their men a partnership in a pioneer life on spiritual and psychological frontiers not inhabited by any other group in the United States. For Negroes have had to hack their way through the wilderness of racism produced by the accumulated growth of nearly four centuries of a barbarous international slave trade, two centuries of chattel slavery and a century of illusive citizenship in a desperate effort to make a...

  32. Myrlie Evers NOVEMBER 26, 1963, FREEDOM HOUSE AWARD CEREMONY, NEW YORK, NEW YORK
    (pp. 241-244)

    Mr. chairman, board members of freedom house, dr. gideonse, dais guests, ladies, and gentlemen, I am filled with humility and gratitude as I accept this bronze memorial plaque presented to me in honor of my late husband, Medgar Wiley Evers. More than five months ago, a soldier was found dying on a southern battlefield. The location of this particular battlefield was Jackson, Mississippi, U.S.A.

    As he departed from his car a single shot was fired from a high-powered rifle with telescopic lens. He fell mortally wounded.

    This soldier wore no uniform, but he often said that he was fighting just...

  33. Ella Baker DECEMBER 1963, STUDENT NONVIOLENT COORDINATING COMMITTEE CONFERENCE, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 245-250)

    I suppose it must be an indication of my growing old, i actually get affected by such applause. I almost lose my sense of balance and want to sort of act like a female and cry. I don’t know whether that’s good or bad for me.

    I had not anticipated having anything to say, and I think it’s very gracious of Jim [Forman] to not only call on me, but to indicate that what SNCC is, is the result of what the people are who are in SNCC. And SNCC if it is anything different from any of the rest...

  34. Victoria Gray MAY 1964, WISCONSIN
    (pp. 251-256)

    I’d like to speak, tonight, about something of grave national importance. That something, as you may be aware, is the Civil Rights Bill—vague as it is—and the chance it stands of being passed in its present form; or the chance that it will be emasculated or completely scuttled.

    When we are speaking of legislatures and the procedures by which they operate, in reality, we are speaking of men, principles, and motivations. We must first consider what Senator Clark of Pennsylvania meant last year when he referred to the “Senate Establishment,” and the vital role it plays in the...

  35. Elizabeth Allen JUNE 16, 1964, CONGRESSIONAL HOUSE SUBCOMMITTEE, WASHINGTON, D.C.
    (pp. 257-262)

    My name is elizabeth allen from liberty, mississippi. My husband was Louis Allen, and he was killed the 31st day of January by shots.

    He had applied to get a job. He was leaving for Milwaukee on the A.M. train, the 9 o’clock train, the next morning, and he got out on the gap that leads to his home and he was shot down with buckshot. No one was in the home but Mrs. Elizabeth Allen and little Mary Allen, three years old, the mother and the daughter, when the shots were fired. He wasn’t a man that stays out...

  36. Rita L. Schwerner JULY 29, 1964, DEPOSITION, HINDS COUNTY, MISSISSIPPI
    (pp. 263-269)
    Rita L. Schwerner and Margarit A. Lewis

    I am twenty-two years old and the wife of michael h. Schwerner, one of the three civil rights workers who have been missing in or near Philadelphia, Mississippi, since June 21, 1964. Michael and I came to Mississippi on about January 16 of this year as field staff workers for the Congress of Racial Equality, assigned to the Council of Federated Organizations. On about January 21 we went to Meridian, Mississippi, with the purpose of establishing a community center in that city which would provide such services which the state and local authorities would not provide for Negro citizens. From...

  37. Ruth Steiner DECEMBER 13, 1964, FIRST UNITARIAN SOCIETY OF DENVER, COLORADO
    (pp. 270-279)

    “We had 12 registered negro voters in hattiesburg this time last year. Today we have over 300! This number must continue to grow until every adult Negro citizen in Mississippi is a registered voter. To help our Voter Registration Drive there will be a mass meeting at St. Paul’s Methodist Church, Wednesday evening at 8 o’clock.” These words were a part of a leaflet passed out in the Negro community a week after the election on November 3.

    Hattiesburg, Mississippi, the county seat of Forrest County, lies halfway between Jackson and the gulf cities of Southeastern Mississippi. Forrest County has...

  38. Fannie Lou Hamer DECEMBER 20, 1964, WILLIAMS INSTITUTIONAL CME CHURCH, HARLEM, NEW YORK
    (pp. 280-287)

    My name is Fannie Lou Hamer and I exist at 626 East Lafayette Street in Ruleville, Mississippi. The reason I say exist is because we’re excluded from everything in Mississippi but the tombs and the graves. That’s why instead of the land of the free and the home of the brave, it’s called in Mississippi the land of the free and the home of the grave.

    It was the 31st of August of 1962 that eighteen of us traveled twenty-six miles to the county courthouse in Indianola, Mississippi, to try to register to become first-class citizens. It was the 31st...

  39. Annie Devine JUNE 1965, MISSISSIPPI FREEDOM DEMOCRATIC PARTY MEETING, JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI
    (pp. 288-291)

    Well, i was feeling alright sitting out in the audience and listening to all the things that have been said tonight. I think it is good for us to see a real, live Negro representative, congressman.

    Some kids came by the FDP office today to tell Mrs. Sanders that they had been down on Capitol Street to apply for jobs in some of the stores down there. The kids were very articulate, very intelligent kids, and one said, “Well, my husband has an account at this one store, and I don’t see why I can’t get a job there.” And...

  40. Dorothy Cotton JUNE 18, 1965, SCOPE ORIENTATION SESSION, ALABAMA
    (pp. 292-295)

    I guess that i only have two things to say. Perhaps, it’s only one, I don’t know. But, I’m thinking that once you decide how you yourselves feel about this subject, it might be good—you might want to understand that it’s good to be sensitive to the feelings of Negroes in the communities where you’ll be working. Really sensitive to what they feel—sensitive without being maudlin. For example, it might be good for you to know that thousands and thousands of Negroes in the South have never been around white people before, except in a servant-master kind of...

  41. Martha Ragland JUNE 29, 1965, TUSKEGEE CIVIC ASSOCIATION, TUSKEGEE, ALABAMA
    (pp. 296-306)

    I was delighted to receive the invitation to come to tuskegee. For many years I was a frequent visitor in Alabama. My father was dean of Athens College and my mother taught history there. Through them and through my visits to Alabama I kept in more than normal touch with Alabama affairs. I was interested in Tuskegee Institute and its long and distinguished history long before that interest was heightened by the role of Tuskegee Institute professors in the fight for full democratic participation by all citizens of Macon County.Gomillion vs. Lightfootwill, of course, always stand as one...

  42. Constance Baker Motley AUGUST 9, 1965, SOUTHERN CHRISTIAN LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE, BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA
    (pp. 307-314)

    First, i want to say how pleased i am to have this opportunity to address the Southern Christian Leadership Conference on its return to desegregated Birmingham. Your coveted invitation to be the guest speaker at this opening night banquet is, indeed, a high compliment.

    No city in America owes more to the SCLC than Birmingham. Your crusade for freedom put Birmingham on the civil rights map and has assured it a place in the history of our fight for freedom.

    I am especially proud to be here to honor the movement’s most celebrated daughter, Rosa Parks.

    We do honor tonight...

  43. Acknowledgments
    (pp. 315-316)
  44. Index
    (pp. 317-322)