1962: Jackson Nonviolent Movement organizes bus boycott in Jackson

Jackson City Bus Boycott (MDAH Collection)
Jackson City Bus Boycott
Link to the catalog

1962: Reverend Robert L. T. Smith becomes first African American to run for Congress since Reconstruction

R.L.T. Smith Campaign Literature
R.L.T. Smith Campaign Literature

February 1962: Council of Federated Organizations (COFO) founded


Council of Federated Organizations (COFO) formed to combat divisiveness between NAACP, SNCC, and CORE and strengthen movement in Mississippi.


Image:  Sign that hung outside the COFO office in Philadelphia, Mississippi.

September 10, 1962: Federal Court orders Ole Miss to admit Meredith

The fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered James Meredith’s enrollment at Ole Miss to be “made effective immediately”

September 20, 1962: Governor Barnett blocks James Meredith’s admission to Ole Miss

September 30, 1962: Riots break out when James Meredith arrives on campus

French reporter Phil Guihard and juke box repairman Ray Gunter were killed and 160 marshals were injured. President Kennedy called in the National Guard and the Army, and within a few days, 23,000 soldiers had arrived in Oxford.

October 1, 1962: James Meredith enrolls in University of Mississippi

Meredith was finally admitted after riots killed two, prompting President Kennedy to send federal troops. Meredith’s enrollment at Ole Miss signaled the beginning of the end of segregation in the state’s public universities and colleges.

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