How the Freedom Vote Mobilized Black Mississippians

Written by on August 4, 2021

In the summer of 1963, the struggle for civil rights in Mississippi wasn’t going well. White supremacists were successfully defending Jim Crow through arrests, beatings, police dogs, firebombing, and bullets. Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) leaders Bob Moses and James Travis were sprayed with machine-gun fire; Travis had near-fatal injuries. Medgar Evers, the NAACP field secretary, was shot dead on June 12 by a member of the Ku Klux Klan and the White Citizens’ Council. And very few of the 425,000 Black Mississippians who were eligible to cast a vote had been allowed to register . . .

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