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Civil Rights Stories Interviews

Search more than 1,000 interviews in more than a dozen oral history collections. Search by collection name or interviewee name.

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Civil Rights Stories Interviews

Timuel Black - Civil Rights Stories

Timuel Black came of age in Chicago's Black Belt during the 1930s, and in 1943 was inducted into the U.S. Army. He received training in the segregated South, then was shipped with his unit to England; his Quartermaster unit landed at Normandy within days of the D-Day landings. He fought across France and in the Battle of the Bulge before witnessing the horrors of Buchenwald first hand. It was there he dedicated himself to working on civil rights issues.

Lynne Cleverdon - Civil Rights Stories

1964 Mississippi voter registration drive

Connie Edwards - Civil Rights Stories

Nurse with the 24th Evacuation Hospital during Vietnam War

Manker Harris - Civil Rights Stories

Manker Harris was born in Englewood, Tennessee on April 29, 1933. The son of a minister, Manker became aware of social issues as he grew up, and increasingly gained an awareness of the Christian teachings about justice. As a young man, he too decided to go into the ministry and enrolled in the seminary at Anderson University (Church of God) in Anderson, Indiana. Following his ordination, he became active in community faith life, and was increasingly drawn to a ministry in the Civil Rights movement.

Kathryn Harris - Civil Rights Stories

Kathryn’s memories of her childhood on the east side of Carbondale, Illinois

Frank Williams - Civil Rights Stories

Frank Williams grew up in Flint, Michigan and captained the defense for his high school football team. But when it was discovered he was dating a white girl, he was expelled. The two eventually married and moved to Chicago where Frank went on to a long and very successful career as a Realtor on the south side of Chicago during a time of redlining, white flight, block busting and heightened racial tensions. Many white home owners employed him to sell their houses, often to African-Americans, especially in Beverly and neighboring communities. His business was frequently the target of harassment and violence, including one incident where a bomb was set off outside his home. In 1979 Frank was ordered by the District Court of the Northern District of Illinois to produce five years of files, a request that amounted to a more sophisticated form of harassment. Despite this, Williams achieved considerable success, holding many leadership positions in the community and receiving numerous awards over a career that has spanned five decades.

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