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Freedom Summer featured not only voter registration drives and "Freedom Schools" for students, but also many performances by folksingers and theater groups. Traveling theater troupes and nationally acclaimed folksinger Pete Singer came to Hattiesburg, Mississippi, but performers also included local musicians and actors who taught Freedom School…

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Item Type: Photograph
Date: 1964

Herbert Randall's photographs vividly capture the energy, spirit, and excitement of Freedom Summer in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Here, some of the 650 or so Freedom School students display their artwork with a gallery decorated by the children's handprints and the word "Freedom." Cecil, the boy on the left, was the son of Victoria Jackson Gray, a…

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Item Type: Photograph
Date: 1964

A copy of the Security Handbook given to participants in the "Freedom Summer" campaign in Mississippi in 1964 highlights the dangers that young civil rights workers were exposed to. Tragically, the precautions suggested by the handbook proved insufficient; three young volunteers, James Chaney, Michael Schwerner, and Andrew Goodman were abducted and…

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Item Type: Government Document
Date: Circa 1964

Pauli Murray entered law school in 1941 with the "single-minded intention of destroying Jim Crow." Murray and her peers, though on the frontlines of civil rights demonstrations and behind the scenes of many organizational meetings since the 1940s, had grown disenchanted with their exclusion from the Movement's leadership. Especially humiliating…
Martin Luther King, Jr.'s famous "I Have a Dream" speech was delivered on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial at the conclusion of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom on August 28, 1963. Delivered in the rhetorical tradition of the African-American church, the speech is hailed as a masterpiece, epitomizing King's eloquent and powerful…
John Lewis, the 23-year-old chairman of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) drafted the speech excerpted below for the 1963 March on Washington. When copies of the speech were circulated in advance, march organizers, as well as Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, objected to his strong rhetoric and criticisms of the federal…

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Item Type: Speech
Date: 1963

This plan, written by Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) member Charles Cobb, proposed that SNCC include Freedom Schools as part of the massive organizing effort it was planning for the summer of 1964. SNCC was creating Freedom Summer to bring hundreds of college students from around the country to Mississippi, and Cobb believed that…

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Item Type: Pamphlet/Petition
Date: 1963

The Council of Federated Organizations (COFO) was a coalition of civil rights organizations that formed in Mississippi in 1962 to coordinate voter registration efforts and broader equal rights reforms. In 1964, COFO launched Freedom Summer, in which thousands of local black Mississippians and hundreds of black and white students from out of state…

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Item Type: Pamphlet/Petition
Date: Circa 1963

This page appeared in a flier calling Americans to participate in the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom on August 28, 1963. Elsewhere in the flier, march organizers called generally "to restore economic freedom to all in this nation; to blot out once and for all the scourge of racial discrimination" and urged "the time is NOW." The march was…

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Item Type: Pamphlet/Petition
Date: 1963

In this photograph taken at the August 28, 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, women marchers carry signs supporting a variety of demands.