Sara Criss’ Civil Rights Memoir #65: Dueling Democrats

“The summer of ’64 was finally over, and the rest of the year was fairly quiet. All of the college students went back to their schools, and we really never knew whether they felt that had accomplished anything or not, but at least none of them stayed around to continue their work, and the SNCC group was left to carry on.

“The Mississippi Freedom Democratic party had been formed that year as an alternative to the Democratic Party in Mississippi, which was all white. They held a meeting in Jackson and selected their delegates and attended the National Convention attempting to unseat the regular delegation. A Negro, Fannie Lou Hamer SNCC, and had assisted the National Council of Churches in creating he Delta Ministry, which was also involved in much of the civil rights activity. She appeared on national television at the national Democratic convention and caused quite a commotion. Some of the politicians wanted to seat the Freedom Democrats instead of the regular Mississippi delegation, which included Hardy Lott. She then became a delegate with the Mississippi Loyalist Democratic Party, which was a successor of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party and which unseated the regular delegation at the National Democratic Convention.”

About sec040121

Hello....I'm in possession of a priceless collection of memoirs and memorabilia left by my mother, Sara Evans Criss. She was a native and lifelong (88 years!) devotee of our small town, who covered this peculiar and volatile corner of the world for 30 years as the Memphis Commercial Appeal's Greenwood bureau chief, a job that started out with debutantes and high school football and wound up spang in the midst of one of the twentieth century's most enduring social upheavals. This blog is dedicated to her memory and the legacy she left behind, both for her family and her community.
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