Finally admitted, when he tried to attend classes, in September, riots erupted, and more than 30,000 federal troops and Mississippi National Guards were brought in. More mayhem resulted, with 68 marshals shot and 2 bystanders killed. Amid the turmoil, Meredith started classes in October. Four years later, in 1996, he graduated. Impassioned by his experiences as a student, he went on to lead “The March Against Fear,” from Memphis, Tennessee to Jackson, Mississippi, protesting racism, violence, and voter registration discrimination against African-Americans. Early in the march, he was shot and hospitalized, and Martin Luther King, Jr. continued on in his behalf. Meredith after his hospital discharge joined the march on its final day as it neared Jackson.
Later on, his life took a turn in another direction, and he criticized liberals, registered as a Republican, and ran for Congress. He held a job as a stockbroker, and nearing retirement, returned to a quiet life in Mississippi running an auto shopt. In contrast to his early participation in the civil rights movement, today Meredith rebuffs the movement.
Helpful resources for information:
Images from: John F. Kennedy Library email@example.com 1-866-JFK-1960 last updated August 2002
Post your comments. What is your response to learning of Meredith's student days? How do you feel about him integrating one of the South's most venerable institutions? Do you think he was a rebel? Was he a justice seeker?