Oral Histories Library
The Veterans of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement Oral History Project has recognized the need to document the history of the Civil Rights Movement through the life stories of those that participated in making this history.
Through a grant awarded by the Public Welfare Foundation, this documented history has been produced in audio and video form only.
Heretofore, historians, writers and graduate students from the state of Mississippi have been the collectors of Mississippi Civil Rights history. There is a lack of continuity between the understanding and appreciation for Civil Rights History among the younger generations. That problem stemmed from a misrepresentation of Civil Rights History because of a lack of authenticity. Many of the activists and community leaders would not share their personal stories because of the tremendous amount of internal pain engendered and a general feeling of mistrust as to how their stories would be used.
Those problems have been addressed through the organization of the Veterans of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement who have endorsed this work. As a group, we are concerned that authentic stories are recorded and used as teaching tools to encourage future generation of leaders. The Veterans of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement Oral History Project has been able to reach over 200 local and national activists, political and community leaders and grassroots people who actively worked in the various Mississippi communities of the movement. Their lives shaped and molded events that subsequently became known as the Civil Rights History of Mississippi.
After transcription and digitization, what will be produced by audio & video tapes will be housed at Tougaloo College and will be available to scholars, students, community organizations, public and private schools, institutions of higher learning and the general public. Our goal is to assist in unveiling the truth that can be found in these authentic stories with a greater level of understanding about that important period of history!
Available Oral Histories (click to view)