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Richard L. Taylor

Lawyer and real estate executive Richard L. Taylor was born on April 6, 1949 in Montgomery, Alabama to Evelyn Lewis and Franklyn Taylor, Jr. Taylor graduated from Richmond Hill High School in 1967. Taylor went on to attend Boston University, where he became the first Rhodes Scholar in the history of the university. After receiving his B.A. degree in journalism and public communications in 1971, he earned his second B.A. degree in philosophy, politics and economics from Oxford University in 1973. Taylor went on to earn his joint M.B.A. and J.D. degrees from Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School in 1977.

Upon graduating in 1977, Taylor joined Boston Consulting Group as a managing consultant providing strategic planning services to Fortune 500 companies. In 1979, Governor Edward King appointed Taylor to the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) Board of Directors and the MBTA Retirement Fund Board. The following year, Taylor was hired as the vice president of development for Fidelity Management and Research (FMR) properties, where he secured rights to Commonwealth Pier and the Commonwealth Flats. From 1985 to 1990, Taylor served as chairman of Taylor Properties, where he developed retail establishments at Orange and Red Line MBTA stations. In 1990, Governor William F. Weld appointed Taylor as secretary of transportation and construction, and chairman of the board of the MBTA. While there, Taylor oversaw the Big Dig project, construction of the Leonard P. Zakim Bridge and the Old Colony commuter rail system, and the reconstruction of Dudley Station Bus Terminal. In 1993, Taylor joined Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA) as division vice president of central and western Massachusetts, although he later transitioned to the role of vice president of national accounts. Taylor was named chairman of Taylor Smith Group, LLC in 1999, where he managed the business real estate development and commercial brokerage areas. During his tenure there, the company completed over $300 million worth of project, including the Olympia Tower, Bradford Estates and Douglass Plaza.

In 1990, Taylor was awarded an honorary doctorate degree in engineering technology by the Wentworth Institute of Technology; and in 1992, he received an honorary doctorate degree in public service from Bridgewater State College. Taylor was the founding president of the Minority Developers Association, and has served on the board of higher education for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the Boston NAACP, and on the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. He also served as president of the Boston Ballet and chairman of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts.

Taylor and his wife, Kathy Redd Taylor, have two children.

Richard L. Taylor was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 15, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.155

Sex

Male

Interview Date

8/15/2018

Last Name

Taylor

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

L.

Organizations
Schools

Boston University

University of Oxford

Harvard Law School

Harvard Business School

First Name

Richard

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

TAY20

Favorite Season

Summer

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

Favorite Quote

We Have To Do What We Have To Do So We Can Do What We Want To Do.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Massachusetts

Birth Date

4/6/1949

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Boston

Country

United States of America

Favorite Food

Fish, Chicken

Short Description

Lawyer and real estate executive Richard L. Taylor (1949 - ) was appointed secretary of transportation and construction and chairman of the board of the MBTA. He also served as chairman of Taylor Smith Group, LLC.

Favorite Color

Purple

Carol Jenkins

Television host and reporter Carol Jenkins was born on November 30, 1944 in Montgomery, Alabama to Elizabeth Gardner Jenkins and John Young. Jenkins moved with her mother and stepfather, Edwin Jenkins, to New York City in 1947, where she graduated from the Springfield Gardens Academy in 1962. Jenkins then earned her B.A. degree in speech pathology from Boston University in 1966, and her M.A. degree in speech pathology from New York University in 1968.

Jenkins began her career in broadcast television in 1970, working as a researcher and reporter for WWOR-TV in New York City. The following year, Jenkins became the co-host of WWOR-TV’s Straight Talk, one of the first daily public affairs programs in New York City. In 1973, Jenkins was hired as the co-host of Positively Black at WNBC-TV. She also worked as an anchor and reporter for the station, traveling to South Africa in 1990 to cover Nelson Mandela’s release from prison. Jenkins then joined WNYC-TV in 1998, where she worked as a reporter and anchor, in addition to hosting her own daily talk show, Carol Jenkins Live. After retiring as a television host and reporter in 2000, Jenkins founded her own media consulting business, Carol Jenkins & Company. In 2003, Jenkins served as an executive producer of the PBS documentary What I Want My Words To Do To You. One year later, Jenkins and her daughter, Elizabeth Gardner Hines, co-authored the book Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black Millionaire, about her maternal uncle, prominent southern businessman A.G. Gaston. Jenkins served as the founding president of the Women’s Media Center from 2006 to 2009; and in 2010, she founded a media consulting firm called caroljenkins:media. In 2016, Jenkins became the host of the television show Black America on CUNY TV.

Jenkins served on the board of directors of the Women’s Media Center, and chaired the board of directors for GreenStone Media LLC and the African Medical & Research Foundation. Jenkins was a recipient of the 2008 National Council on Women’s Organizations Women’s Equality Award; and in 2009, she received the North Star News Prize from the North Star Foundation. She was also a recipient of the Ida B. Wells Bravery in Journalism Award from Women’s eNews and a United Nations Foundation press fellowship in global health issues.

Jenkins has two children and three grandchildren.

Carol Jenkins was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on April 29, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.087

Sex

Female

Interview Date

4/29/2018

Last Name

Jenkins

Maker Category
Marital Status

Widowed

Organizations
Schools

P.S. 140 Edward K. Ellington School

Rhodes Preparatory School

Our Savior Lutheran School

Springfield Gardens High School

Boston University

New York University

First Name

Carol

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

JEN13

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands

Favorite Quote

Compassion Is Essential.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Birth Date

11/30/1944

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Favorite Food

Yogurt

Short Description

Television host and reporter Carol Jenkins (1944 - ) worked at WWOR-TV, WNBC-TV, and WNYW-TV over the course of her career. She also served as the founding president of the Women’s Media Center.

Employment

WCBS-TV

WOR-TV

ABC Network

WNBC-TV

WNYW-TV

CUNY-TV

Women's Media Center

Favorite Color

Red

Marcia Lythcott

Newspaper editor Marcia Lythcott was born on May 20, 1954 in Montgomery, Alabama. Her father, William Watkins, served in the U.S. Army; her mother, and Florence Watkins, a nurse’s aide. Both of her parents were avid readers. Lythcott’s mother used newspapers to introduce her and her sister, Pam, to politics. Some her favorite childhood novels and magazines were the Bobbsey Twins series, fairy tales, True Confessions magazine, Ebony and the Encyclopedia Britannica. After graduating from high school, both Lythcott and her sister attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Lythcott graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with her B.A. degree in journalism.

Lythcott began her career in print journalism in the late 1970’s. She worked for four years as an education and police beat reporter for a local newspaper in Madison-Wisconsin. Then, in 1982, she was hired by the Chicago Tribune newspaper and began writing editorial pieces. Lythcott also assisted with major research projects and served as an editor of the “Opinion” section. Her article titled “Encore!, Encore!” (1987), published in the Chicago Tribune’s “Food Guide” section, was recognized as the most popular article and Best Reprise Recipe. At the Chicago Tribune Company, she served as the editor of Style and Home and the Good Eating Cookbook. As editor of the “Commentary” section in the Chicago Tribune, Lythcott typically read seventy-five to one-hundred opinion submissions a day. Later in her career, she became one of the highest ranking African American women on the Chicago Tribune’s editorial board.

Lythcott also served on the board member of the Louis Carr Internship Foundation. Her late husband, Stephen Lythcott, served as the vice president of the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois until his death in 1994. Throughout the years, her favorite pastimes have been reading, traveling, gardening and ballet.

Marcia Lythcott was interviewed by The History Makers on August 19, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.229

Sex

Female

Interview Date

8/19/2013

Last Name

Lythcott

Maker Category
Marital Status

Widow

Middle Name

Ann

Occupation
Schools

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Marcia

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

LYT01

Favorite Season

Summer

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

Mexico

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Birth Date

5/20/1954

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Liver, Onions

Short Description

Newspaper editor Marcia Lythcott (1954 - ) , long-time editor of the “Commentary” section in the Chicago Tribune, also served as editor of Style and Home and the Good Eating Cookbook.

Employment

Chicago Tribune

Favorite Color

Chartreuse

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Marcia Ann Lythcott's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her maternal grandparents' occupations and Greenville, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her mother's life in Greenville, Alabama and her dislike of the South

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses her father's service in the military

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her parents and how they influenced her

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes the different places she lived while growing up

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses race in the U.S. Air Force

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about starting to attend school in Clovis, New Mexico

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about reading a lot from a young age

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about moving from Clovis, New Mexico to Bangor, Maine

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about living in Darmstadt, Germany

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses her love of reading

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about Madison, Wisconsin and the events of 1968

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes her experience in high school

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses the encouragement of her high school mentors

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes her career aspirations and the student protests at UW-Madison

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about studying journalism and college life

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her social life in college and her internship in La Crosse, Wisconsin

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses the attitudes of La Crosse, Wisconsin

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about graduating from college and the events of 1976

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes her first job at the Racine Journal Times

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about how she got the job at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her impressions of Mayor Harold Washington

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about the African American staff presence at the Chicago Tribune in 1983

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her first jobs at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her job as assistant food editor at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks her job as the style editor at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her marriage to Stephen Lythcott in 1986

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about being promoted to the editorial board at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about the political history of the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about some of the contentious editorial issues at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about the Chicago Tribune's endorsement of President Barack Obama

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses the different roles of the editorial board at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about op-ed process and whom she interacts with in her work day

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her process for choosing op-ed pieces at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about publishing a range of opinions at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about op-ed submissions and finding strong female writers

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Marcia Ann Lythcott gives advice for the writing of op-eds

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses allegations of collusion and conspiracy at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about editorial accountability at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses the Chicago Tribune's relationship with the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her future

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about living in the African American community in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Marcia Ann Lythcott describes what she would have done differently

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Marcia Ann Lythcott reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses diversity at the Chicago Tribune

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Marcia Ann Lythcott discusses the NABJ and the Maynard Institute

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about her late husband, Stephen Lythcott

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about how she would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

1$4

DAStory

11$9

DATitle
Marcia Ann Lythcott talks about reading a lot from a young age
Marcia Ann Lythcott gives advice for the writing of op-eds
Transcript
Okay. So you go from--now were you interested in writing at all as a young--$$Yeah, I was always a big reader. From the very beginning, I just would like to read a lot, and I would--my mother [Florence Watkins] says I would get in trouble every morning because I'd be late getting ready for school because I was reading some book, or I was reading some magazine or I was reading some comic strip, I was just--I was just always--I always enjoyed reading. So, and I think I got that--my parents got the newspaper so I would watch them read the newspaper and then I'd get the comics and sprawl out on the floor and pretend like I could read, but I was probably just looking at the pictures and making up--making up my own story. Or we would get like the Sears catalog or the Penny's catalog and, you know, like flip through that and make up a story about the people who were in the catalog or the furniture, you know, fantasy stuff in your head, yeah.$$I read that your mother read to you a lot.$$I don't know. She liked to read, I mean she liked to read. I don't recall her reading to us a lot, but it's just a habit that we picked up. I mean she liked to read, so we read. My dad read the newspaper every day, so we read the newspaper. My dad would listen to talk radio and the TV--the radio, so we'd listened to talk radio. It's just, you know, whatever habits your parents have, you just sort of pick up. But they didn't force us to read, we just liked to read. So they didn't force us to read, but they'd take us to the library all the time. And they insisted that we get good grades. They paid attention to our education and who our teachers were and so. And they'd buy us books, yeah.$So if I was writing an op-ed and targeting the Tribune [Chicago Tribune] with my op-ed, what advice would you give me, or anyone doing that?$$It would have to be a strong issue. You just have to really think it out. I should know what point you're going to make by the third paragraph. We call that the nut graph. The writing should be bright, it should be crisp, make your point, don't meander, know what you're talking about, be authoritative. It's hard to write an op-ed, actually. And don't use the pronoun I, because nobody cares. You know, unless you're really important, unless you're, you know, a celebrity or [President] Barack Obama, nobody cares what you think. They don't care what I think. That's the mistake a lot of people make as--they start out a piece "I think," and it sounds harsh, but nobody cares.$$I see, okay. That's it, cold hard facts.$$Cold hard facts. And when I tell people that they, you know, when they think about it, then they really get it, you know. And there's a way to write a piece without using that pronoun, you know. You can tell a story and not use the word, "I." So just tell the story, you know. A woman wrote about taking care of her mother who had Alzheimer's and how difficult that was. So, and she never used the pronoun "I." It can be done, but it's hard. It's harder to do it that way. And it's also--people always think like the suggested link for op-eds is like 800 words, so people always like I write to 800 words. Well, sometimes 400 words tells the story, you know, and people will love you for that, so.$$Yeah. A person with a strong opinion, I would guess would well over count it?$$Yeah. Yeah, yeah. And a lot of people who do satire. A satire actually can be a problem. You have to be really good at satire 'cause people don't get it a lot. So satire is iffy just because it's just hard to execute and people who write humorous pieces, I mean, they tell you joke, after joke, after joke and it's like, yeah, but you told that joke before, you know, it's not funny anymore, so. Humorous and satire pieces are also difficult to pull off.

Gwendolyn E. Boyd

Mechanical engineer and civic leader Gwendolyn Elizabeth Boyd was born on December 27, 1955, in Montgomery, Alabama to Dora McClain. Boyd’s mother passed away when Boyd was thirteen years old, and her godmother, Emzella Mapson, raised her. Boyd's teachers, at the all-black McDavid Elementary School, nurtured her love of math from a young age. Boyd was one of five black students to integrate Jefferson Davis High School in Montgomery, Alabama. In high school. she helped establish a student interracial council, was a member of the math honor society, and performed choir before graduating as valedictorian in 1973. Boyd attended the historically black Alabama State University in Montgomery, Alabama on a scholarship, graduating summa cum laude with her B.S. degree in mathematics and minors in music and physics in 1977. She received a fellowship to attend Yale University's School of Engineering in New Haven, Connecticut, becoming the school's first African American woman to receive an M.S. degree in mechanical engineering in 1979.

Following her graduation, Boyd worked briefly as an engineer at IBM in Kingston, New York. In 1980, she was offered a position as a submarine navigation systems analyst at the Applied Physics Laboratory at John Hopkins University. Boyd was later appointed to high-level administrative positions, first as the assistant for development programs in 1998 and then the as executive assistant to the chief of staff in 2004.

Boyd has been an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., rising through the ranks of the sorority's leadership since joining as a student at Alabama State. In 2000, Boyd was elected for a four-year term as the national president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. Boyd also serves on the board of directors of Leadership Greater Washington, the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., Bennett College and the National Partnership for Community Leadership. She is a member of The Links, Inc., the National Council of Negro Women and Ebenezer A.M.E Church in Fort Washington, Maryland where she serves on the ministerial staff. In 2007, Boyd received her M.Div. degree at Howard University and is an ordained itinerant elder in the A.M.E. Church. She has also received honorary doctorates from Lincoln University in Pennsylvania and Bennett College in North Carolina. In 2010, President Barack Obama nominated Boyd to the board of trustees of the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation.

Gwendolyn E. Boyd was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on April 25, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.161

Sex

Female

Interview Date

4/25/2007

Last Name

Boyd

Maker Category
Middle Name

E.

Schools

McDavid Elementary School

Jefferson Davis High School

Alabama State University

Yale University

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Gwendolyn

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

BOY02

Favorite Season

Fall

Sponsor

National Science Foundation

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

South Africa

Favorite Quote

The Lord Is My Light And My Salvation. Whom Shall I Fear?

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Alabama

Birth Date

12/27/1955

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Montgomery

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken, Collard Greens

Short Description

Civic leader and mechanical engineer Gwendolyn E. Boyd (1955 - ) was the first African American woman to receive her M.S. degree in mechanical engineering from Yale University. In 2000, she was elected national president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Boyd became the president of Alabama State University in 2014.

Employment

International Business Machines Corporation

Johns Hopkins University. Applied Physics Laboratory.

Main Sponsor
Main Sponsor URL
Favorite Color

Red

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Gwendolyn Boyd's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Gwendolyn Boyd lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her mother

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her upbringing and the role of God in her life

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Gwendolyn Boyd remembers her mother's death and her last words to her

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about not knowing her father

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her elementary school experience

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about growing up in the Tulane Courts projects of Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her childhood friends and her interest in math

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Gwendolyn Boyd describes the sights, sounds and smells of growing up

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about overcoming her hardships and being independent from an early age

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her experience in junior high school during integration

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her role on an integrated council with black and white students at Jefferson Davis High School

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about protesting the song "Dixie"

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about the social and political activities during the 1950s and 1960s and their influence

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her decision to attend Alabama State University

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her transition to Alabama State University and her community activities

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her interest in math, and about being recruited to pursue her graduate studies in engineering at Yale University

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about being accepted into Yale University's School of Engineering

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about transitioning from Alabama to Connecticut, finding Varick AME Church, and funding her education

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her experience at Yale University's School of Engineering

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her experience working at IBM, and her decision to leave IBM and join Johns Hopkins University's Applied Physics Laboratory

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her experience at Johns Hopkins University and her experience in submarine school

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about becoming the president of the Washington, D.C. chapter and the millennial president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her leadership initiatives in South Africa as the president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her leadership initiatives as the president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about the Project SEE initiative

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about the mission of the Delta Homeownership Initiative for Financial Fortitude program

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about the Leadership Delta program

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her faith and her admiration of HistoryMaker Bishop Vashti McKenzie, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her faith and her admiration of HistoryMaker Bishop Vashti McKenzie, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her board appointments with Leadership Washington, the Children's National Medical Center, and United Way

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about the National Partnership for Community Leadership, The Links, Inc., and her other professional affiliations

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her faith in God

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Gwendolyn Boyd shares her message to future generations

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Gwendolyn Boyd describes her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$3

DAStory

9$4

DATitle
Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her interest in math, and about being recruited to pursue her graduate studies in engineering at Yale University
Gwendolyn Boyd talks about her experience working at IBM, and her decision to leave IBM and join Johns Hopkins University's Applied Physics Laboratory
Transcript
So did you know what you were going to become or what you would do?$$I didn't know what I was going to become but whatever it was, I knew it had to involve math.$$Okay.$$I just knew it had to be something that involved math, that involved problem solving, that involved putting things together. Again, it goes back to my love of sewing, which is putting pieces of a puzzle together to make a garment, my love of music, which involved, you know, notes, which have, you know, mathematical connotations to them. So everything that I did, not knowing it then, but everything that God ordained for me had mathematical background in it. So I knew whatever career I wanted, it had to involve math. Alabama State [University] was traditionally and still is, traditionally known as a teachers' college. It was founded as a teachers' college. So just about everybody who came through there became a teacher. That's what, that's what you went there for. But somewhere in my spirit, the Lord said, no, I don't think you're gonna be a teacher, didn't know what, but I knew something that had to do with math. So as I matriculated I started taking Physics, and really loved Physics, which, you know, combined my love of math and problem solving to real-life situations. We did not have Physics, as a major. We had it as a minor at Alabama State. So I took all the courses that were available to me for, as a Physics minor. I was also a Music minor. Again, my love of music, but knowing in my mind or telling myself in my mind I did not have the talent that would take me to the Metropolitan Opera, and I wanted to eat every day. So I wanted to stick with something that would put food on the table. So I was a music minor. I had to do two recitals and all the other things that, you know, were a part of that discipline. But somewhere towards my junior, the latter part of my junior year, I started talking with my advisor and he said to me, "You need to start thinking about going to grad school". And I said, "To do what?", you know, and he said, well, just start looking at some things and start reading, you know, look at some ways you can use your talent and your skill. And I just started reading about engineering, never met an engineer in my life. No engineers were on our campus, so I had no point of reference as to what, you know, to talk with someone. But in reading about what engineers did, I said, this is what I want to do. I wanna be able to solve problems, using my math and using my physics and solve world-life problems. This is what I wanna do. And so as my senior year approached, I took the GRE and did well on that and then I started applying to graduate school. And my advisor said, you know, just apply to a broad number of schools and the --I said, well, I don't have any engineering as an undergraduate. What will happen if I apply, you know, for graduate school for engineering without an engineering undergraduate major? And he said, well, let's just try it and see, and so I did. And so I applied for grad school and had actually been accepted at the University of Illinois and had talked to the dean there and was, you know, ready, had my apartment all set, getting ready to graduate, and graduated top of my class at Alabama State. So, and then I got this phone call from Yale [University]. I have to be perfectly honest. I thought it was one of my friends playing a joke on me (laughter). They said, this is, you know, Dr. Aptful (ph.) from Yale University. And I said, yeah, right. Okay, and we understand that you're interested in pursuing graduate work in engineering. I said, yes. Well, we'd like to offer you a fellowship to come to Yale. And I said, okay, who is this? (Laughter). He says, no, this is actually, you know, I'm the associate professor, you know, here in the School of Engineering, and we'd like to talk to you about applying to Yale because, of course, I had not applied, applying and coming here as--and being a part of our graduate program. So without an application or anything, he said, if you're willing to come, yeah, if you have them send us your transcript, and we'll work through the details. And I was accepted into Yale's graduate school for engineering.$So what happens next?$$Well, I now have to get a job (laughter). And needless to say, having a degree from Yale opened a number of doors, doors that I didn't even know existed before, and companies were calling me and saying, we wanna, you know, we want you to California to work for such and such, and, you know, and I was flying all over the place. This was wonderful. I said, this is nice, you know, but you have to make a decision to go somewhere. And I started working with IBM in Kingston, New York, another shocking transition (laughter). Now, I've learned how to live in New Haven [Connecticut], which is, you know, Metropolitan kind of a city. Kingston, New York is in the Catskills. It's where, you know, people kind of go for meditative--there is nothing in Kingston except IBM. And I think even now they've closed the plant there. So, again, I'm in an environment where I am the only African American, female, and, you have a sense of, this is why they've hired me. But there was absolutely no fulfillment in the assignment that I was given. IBM is a wonderful company, and I don't want to disparage it in any way, but I, the assignment that I was given was not one that was very enlightening, encouraging, whatever word you wanna use for it.$$What was the assignment?$$Actually, nothing. I was to read through some manuals and comment on some pieces, but I wanted to do engineering, didn't really want to read manuals and give comments and so I became impatient and said, I don't think I'm going to be able to stay here. And so some of those people who I had flown on the planes with and, you know, done interviews with, before I decided to come with IBM, I called them back, and said, "Remember me?" (Laughter) And that's when my godmother's advice of "Don't burn your bridges and be careful how you treat people and how you talk to people". They said, oh, yes, yes, we remember you very well. And so, I said, I'm interested in coming back or, you know, at least talking with you again about an opportunity. And one of those opportunities was at Johns Hopkins at the Applied Physics Laboratory. And the gentleman who had interviewed you said, oh, we would just love to have you here. We can't offer you IBM money because that was another mistake that I made and which I tell young people all the time. I know that this, in this environment, in this society we live in, everybody goes for the money. But going for the money in that case was a mistake for me. I should have gone with the kind of assignment, the kind of work that I really wanted to do. So he said, we can't offer you IBM money, but we can offer you a great job and a great assignment. And so, in 1980, I came to Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory and I've been there ever since.

Joe Dickson

Joe Dickson was born on March 5, 1933, in Montgomery, Alabama, to Mary Rachael and Robert Dickson. Dickson was raised by his widowed mother and his aunt Gertrude; he attended a Catholic elementary school before the family moved to the projects in Birmingham in 1939. Dickson graduated from Fairfield Industrial High School in 1950, and worked as a welder until he entered the United States Army.

Dickson then enrolled in Miles College from which he received his B.A. degree in sociology. While at Miles College, Dickson was involved in the civil rights marches and selective buying campaigns; he was arrested along with Rev. Fred L. Shuttlesworth and other civil rights activists in front of the federal court house in Birmingham. In the 1960s, Dickson joined A.G. Gaston’s Washington Insurance Company as an insurance agent, working in six different counties. Dickson also worked with the Urban League and acted as the deputy director for an experimental demonstration project at Miles College that trained African Americans for jobs within the community.

In 1970, Dickson attended Howard University Law School from which he earned his J.D. degree in 1973. Dickson then returned to Alabama and formed his own real estate and construction company. Dickson was the President of the Alabama Republican Council for a number of years and was asked to work for the former governor of Alabama, Guy Hunt, as the Assistant of Minority Affairs in 1988. Dickson began working with the Birmingham World newspaper in 1987 and in 1989 returned to run the paper. Dickson married Dr. Charlie Mae Dickson; together they had eight adult children.

Dickson passed away on July 21, 2018.

Accession Number

A2007.106

Sex

Male

Interview Date

3/22/2007

Last Name

Dickson

Maker Category
Schools

Fairfield Industrial High School

Robinson Elementary School

Miles College

Howard University School of Law

First Name

Joe

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

DIC04

Favorite Season

Summer

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Alabama

Birth Date

3/5/1933

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Birmingham

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Collard Greens, Fish

Death Date

7/21/2018

Short Description

Real estate entrepreneur and civil rights activist Joe Dickson (1933 - 2018) was involved in the civil rights marches and selective buying campaigns in Birmingham. Dickson later formed his own real estate and construction company, was the President of the Alabama Republican Council, and served as Alabama's assistant of Minority Affairs.

Employment

Urban League

Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Booker T. Washington Insurance Company

Vulcan Real Estate Investment Corporation

Century 21 Real Estate

State of Alabama

Birmingham World

Favorite Color

Black

Timing Pairs
0,0:240,70:14640,289:18480,363:47042,665:53184,765:56753,826:70530,1059:74850,1168:75170,1173:77250,1201:85060,1297:90820,1473:96220,1622:111820,1791:112520,1809:116580,1898:116860,1908:117770,1928:118400,1940:119240,1955:134562,2216:143770,2324:155212,2646:163148,2707:175566,2875:175936,2881:176972,2911:185450,3068:189660,3138:191768,3198:201590,3334:206765,3410:222970,3634:226956,3677:228252,3710:232330,3791:235710,3847$0,0:17776,609:19980,681:31425,950:40230,1224:43220,1324:98584,1874:105226,2017:109662,2066:114380,2152:124140,2383:135122,2499:173710,2998
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Joe Dickson's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Joe Dickson lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Joe Dickson describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Joe Dickson remembers his maternal grandmother and great-grandmother

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Joe Dickson talks about his maternal uncles

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Joe Dickson describes his mother's occupation

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Joe Dickson describes his mother's education

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Joe Dickson remembers his homeschooling

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Joe Dickson recalls the Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Joe Dickson remembers his relatives' deaths from pneumonia

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Joe Dickson describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Joe Dickson talks about his father's work ethic

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Joe Dickson remembers moving with his siblings to Birmingham, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Joe Dickson recalls his attempt to run away from his aunt and uncle's home

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Joe Dickson remembers Robinson Elementary School in Fairfield, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Joe Dickson describes his experiences at Robinson Elementary School

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Joe Dickson remembers his newspaper delivery route

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Joe Dickson describes his early personality

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Joe Dickson recalls Principal E.J. Oliver at Fairfield Industrial High School in Fairfield, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Joe Dickson describes his experiences at Fairfield Industrial High School

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Joe Dickson recalls learning African American history at Fairfield Industrial High School

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Joe Dickson describes the community of Fairfield, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Joe Dickson recalls being drafted into the U.S. Army

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Joe Dickson talks about claiming his mother as a dependent

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Joe Dickson remembers the racial tensions in the integrated U.S. Army

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Joe Dickson describes his training in the U.S. Army

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Joe Dickson recalls qualifying for disability compensation from the U.S. Army

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Joe Dickson remembers seeing Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. in a parade

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Joe Dickson remembers his decision to attend Miles College in Fairfield, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Joe Dickson describes his experiences at Miles College

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Joe Dickson remembers joining the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Joe Dickson remembers his graduation from Miles College

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Joe Dickson describes the civil rights activities at Miles College, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Joe Dickson describes the civil rights activities at Miles College, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Joe Dickson recalls working at the Booker T. Washington Insurance Company

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Joe Dickson remembers working at H.C. Bowhang

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Joe Dickson remembers his return to Birmingham, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Joe Dickson talks about his first marriage

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Joe Dickson recalls his difficulties at the Booker T. Washington Insurance Company

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Joe Dickson remembers working for the White Dairy Company

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Joe Dickson recalls the selective buying campaign in Birmingham, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Joe Dickson remembers marching with Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Joe Dickson recalls his release from jail

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Joe Dickson remembers his offer to work for Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Joe Dickson remembers working for A.G. Gaston in Tuskegee, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 13 - Joe Dickson describes how he came to work for the Excel Superstores

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Joe Dickson recalls the attacks on Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Joe Dickson remembers being accused of stealing

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Joe Dickson remembers the job training program at Miles College in Fairfield, Alabama

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Joe Dickson remembers working for the Urban League's Project Assist

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Joe Dickson recalls working as an insurance salesman at Blue Cross Blue Shield

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Joe Dickson remembers the Howard University School of Law in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Joe Dickson describes his wife and children

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Joe Dickson remembers a lesson from A.G. Gaston

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Joe Dickson recalls the start of his real estate career

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Joe Dickson talks about his real estate career with A.G. Gaston

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Joe Dickson remembers working as the gubernatorial assistant for minority affairs

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Joe Dickson remembers leaving the office of Alabama Governor H. Guy Hunt

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Joe Dickson recalls his nomination to the State of Alabama's personnel board

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Joe Dickson talks about his realty company

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Joe Dickson remembers a lesson from his mother

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Joe Dickson describes his plans for the Birmingham World newspaper

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Joe Dickson recalls facing criticism as the owner of the Birmingham World

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Joe Dickson reflects upon his life

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Joe Dickson describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Joe Dickson shares a message to future generations

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Joe Dickson reflects upon the racial history of the United States

DASession

1$1

DATape

5$4

DAStory

1$10

DATitle
Joe Dickson recalls the attacks on Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth
Joe Dickson recalls his release from jail
Transcript
Okay. Before we go on to you managing Excel Superstores [ph.], right before you left Tuske- I mean to go to Tuskegee [Alabama], there was an incident with the kids in the park that you were telling about off camera.$$Well, what I thought I was telling you was that after the, the initial arrest being arrest and the sit ins were happening all over--all over the south and we were trying to integrate these lunch counters and the other restaurants and things. In the--in these department stores like Loveman's, Pizitz, they had a nice eating places in there. And so the kids were up there in the, the--they were--well we would let a senior student probably would take 'em up there to, to sit in and in these restaurants they had, you know.$$Um-hm.$$And you--as a consequence, it got out of hand. And so they called out and said that they were acting--the kids were acting kind of bad and for somebody to come up there and get them. So Fred [HistoryMaker Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth] went up there to get them. And I just was happening to be coming in at that time--'cause not coming in, I was coming, going about to go up there too. And so Fred had brought them from downtown, they were on 17th Street and he was on the left hand side coming, going north like you coming back to 16th Street Baptist Church [Birmingham, Alabama]. And right there at the--'cause Nelson Brothers Cafe [Birmingham, Alabama] was right there. And right time Fred got right there he had a white handkerchief in his hand. And he had right it--it was going--was going across--we was finna go--they were gonna go across the street and come down by the Masonic Temple [Masonic Temple Building, Birmingham, Alabama] on past the hotel and (unclear) and all that bunch down through there. And by the time he got right at the end, they put the water hose on him. They put the water hose on Fred, knocked him up against that wall while they was--and when he was coming off the wall another hose hit him and knocked him back up. Fred got up. Malcolm X was standing over on the other corner over there and when--when Fred got up, I don't see how. He got up and looked at him and several us said, "Don't put no more water on him." So he went on past and marched the kids on down past the hostess, the new (Unclear) hotel. And the new (Unclear) restaurant was the hotel up there. Walked on down there--there used to be a barbershop and was Ms. Lurleen [ph.] had her health and beauty aids stand right there. And some guys, tried to get in the--in the--they were keeping the kids in a single file march, keep, trying to keep it orderly. The streets were full. But they kept the kids in order to get them back in the church. Some black guys tried to get in the line and this white policeman told them, "You can't get in this line. You ain't worthy. You ain't good enough. You ain't good as these people." Said, "Get out move back." He was out--they were get in there after the kids have gone up on there and got in the line and marched back. They were gonna get in the line. The police said, "You ain't--you not good as these folk. Move back, move back." So when the kids got--when Fred got them across the street there--got all the children inside going in the church, Fred was going down in this little basement like thing on the right side that you can go down. Them folks put that water hose on Fred, about six or seven water hoses on him. And look like they tried to flood the basement. All I know is, I thought he was dead. They was trying to kill him with--Birmingham [Alabama] fire--firemen were trying to kill him. Fred survived that. I saw him over here yesterday. And that was--and I--and right after that I didn't--I didn't--I didn't wanna be nonviolent no more. That was--'cause that was--totally they didn't have to do that, you know.$So the next day the guy said, "[HistoryMaker] Joe Dickson all the way." I didn't know what he was talking about. So one of the guys in the--one of the criminals said, "All the way. Man, you going, you going. You getting out." I said, "All the way?" He said, "All the way mean you going and you getting out." I went out, they didn't say nothing, chewing gum didn't say nothing. Then another--another time we go to jail, I went to jail again they didn't say nothing. And the next time I went Piggy [ph.] told me he said, "Joe, we kind of want you on these debits and thing, you know, we need you to get some results for me. You made your--you made your witness. You can do that." Then I slip off and come over here and be with Dr. King [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.] and we would--then we went down in the poolroom, go to get the knives from people and so they wouldn't be cutting and beating on them. We went down there the police told us to get out. They ran us out the poolroom. They didn't want us in there. They didn't want us to bring no peace. So the last time I went to jail--I went to jail with N.A. Smith [Nelson Smith], he's dead now, John Porter. They had arrested everybody. All most of them were in jail. And weren't nobody out but Reverend Gardner [Edward Gardner] and he was the man that was getting folks out of jail. So I'm sitting next to John Porter, Reverend Porter I said, "Reverend," I said, "Reverend Porter, man it looks like they got us." I said, "Man, it's all over." I said, "They got us." And I said, "Martin in jail. Fred [HistoryMaker Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth] in jail. Ralph [Ralph Abernathy] in jail." All them folks in jail. I said, "Man," I said, "what we gonna do?" Porter told me this he said--he said, "Don't worry about it." He said, "Martin is dealing from on high." Same thing happened again. That next morning we still got all us thinking we gonna get on out, and the next morning, "Joe Dickson all the way." When I got over there to that office, Piggy was there. He said, "Joe you know the old man believe in what y'all doing." He said, "But we got a job for you in Tuskegee [Alabama]." He said, "We've already," (laughter), "talked to the lady down there. All you got to do is go down there and report. Don't get in no--don't go in no--just get in the--your car. Get in the car with an agent that rides and learn them debits. And so we can do some business down there." He said, "The old man believe this, that we need to do this. We need to fight this and everything is fine." He said, "But when they integrate, and if they integrate, if you go in there and buy a hamburger or a hotdog you gonna have to pay for it. So you go on to Montgomery [Alabama]. Pass on through Montgomery, you go to Tuskegee." And they sent me to Tuskegee to work (laughter).$$So it's--what year was this?$$It had to be around '64 [1964], '64 [1964]. Sixty--'64 [1964] or '65 [1965]. Maybe '64 [1964] or '65 [1965].$$Okay.

The Honorable Vanzetta Penn McPherson

Vanzetta Penn McPherson is a retired United States magistrate judge in her hometown of Montgomery, Alabama. McPherson was born on May 26, 1947, to Sadie and Luther Penn. McPherson received her B.A. degree in speech pathology and audiology from Howard University in 1969, her M.A. degree in 1971 from Columbia University, and her J.D. degree, also from Columbia, in 1974.

McPherson began practicing law as an associate at Hughes Hubbard & Reed, a Wall Street law firm. She stayed there until 1975, when she became an assistant attorney general for the State of Alabama. In 1978, McPherson began practicing law in Montgomery, focusing on family and constitutional law. McPherson was appointed United States magistrate judge for the Middle District of Alabama in 1992 and was re-appointed in 2000; she retired from the bench in 2006.

One of the most notable rulings for McPherson was a discrimination case involving the Alabama Two-Year College System. Three females at two different Alabama colleges were denied promotions because they were women and because of their age. McPherson ruled in favor of these women and ordered the college system to give them the promotions; she also ordered back pay for the women.

In 1989, McPherson and a fellow lawyer founded and built Roots & Wings, a cultural bookstore that serves as a showcase for black history, art and literature. McPherson holds life memberships of the National Bar Association and the American Bar Association. McPherson also served on Alabama’s Federal Judicial Nominating Commission, the Eleventh Circuit Advisory Council, and several advisory committees to the Alabama Supreme Court; she is also a past president and vice president of the Alabama Lawyers Association, past president of the Montgomery Chapter of the Federal Bar Association and chair of the Family Law Section of the Alabama State Bar.

McPherson has received awards from the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the Women of Distinction, South Central Alabama Girl Scout Council, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

McPherson and her husband, Thomas, have raised four children.

Accession Number

A2007.099

Sex

Female

Interview Date

3/19/2007

Last Name

McPherson

Maker Category
Middle Name

Penn

Organizations
First Name

Vanzetta

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

MCP01

Favorite Season

Christmas

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

Hilton Head, South Carolina

Favorite Quote

What You Are Is God's Gift To You. What You Make Of Yourself Is Your Gift To God.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Alabama

Birth Date

5/26/1947

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Montgomery

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Peanuts

Short Description

Entrepreneur and federal judge The Honorable Vanzetta Penn McPherson (1947 - ) served as a United States magistrate judge for the Middle District of Alabama and co-founded the African American cultural bookstore, Roots & Wings.

Favorite Color

Earth Tones

Timing Pairs
0,0:8168,159:9579,178:11488,217:18294,347:19207,364:26312,395:27042,409:30984,490:31276,495:34780,565:41506,632:42082,644:42722,657:60750,911:65850,972:69710,989:74126,1076:74586,1082:74954,1087:85444,1213:86032,1222:86452,1229:87208,1239:96597,1308:97035,1315:97327,1320:98276,1335:99444,1357:102364,1419:110717,1538:111410,1549:112257,1559:114490,1591:120830,1638:121630,1650:122510,1663:126590,1780:127230,1790:132010,1845$0,0:2540,9:3100,17:3660,26:4220,34:9340,94:12140,111:12780,120:18220,194:18620,200:19740,217:20860,232:22460,254:23180,263:34350,339:35190,348:36765,374:55461,587:56028,596:56595,603:57081,610:58377,629:62346,705:63156,716:63723,726:69635,771:71913,823:75152,840:75663,848:78583,903:83474,1004:83839,1010:84204,1016:89435,1026:89695,1031:89955,1036:90605,1047:91060,1055:91515,1064:93855,1116:94895,1138:95220,1144:97300,1188:97755,1196:102760,1287:107709,1336:109896,1384:116368,1454:116758,1460:117148,1466:118708,1482:119020,1487:123895,1531:124420,1539:129640,1599
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Vanzetta Penn McPherson's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her maternal family history

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her maternal grandmother, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her maternal grandmother, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her mother's personality and career, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her mother's personality and career, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes how segregation in Alabama restricted her parents' educational opportunities

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her father's family background

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her father's family history

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes the homes of her maternal and paternal grandparents

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her maternal and paternal grandfathers' family histories

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes how her parents met

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers the neighborhood in which she grew up, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers the neighborhood in which she grew up, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her experience of the Montgomery Bus Boycott when she was eight years old

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes the day-to-day schedule of her first three years at Alabama State College Laboratory High School

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes the structure of her classes at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her first grade teacher at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her second and third grade teachers at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her fourth and fifth grade teachers at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her sixth grade teacher at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her seventh grade teacher at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her eighth grade teacher at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her ninth grade teacher at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her experience in tenth grade at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson reflects on how notable Civil Rights milestones and people are taken for granted in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her eleventh grade teacher at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers her experience in twelfth grade at Alabama State College Laboratory High School in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes the class segregation of the organizations Jack and Jill of America and National Tots and Teens

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers enrolling at Howard University in Washington, D.C. in 1965

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson talks about the Vietnam War

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes the environment of Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls her brief experience pledging Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls class discrimination and skin color bias at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her decision to major in speech pathology at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers some of her professors at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls the jobs she worked while she was a student at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls her decision to enroll at Columbia Law School in New York City, New York

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls her professors at Columbia Law School in New York City, New York

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her experience at Columbia Law School in New York City, New York

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls her classmates at Columbia Law School in New York City, New York

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers meeting her first husband while attending Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls her experience working at the law firm of Hughes Hubbard and Reed

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes leaving New York City and returning to Montgomery, Alabama in 1975

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes starting her private law practice in Montgomery, Alabama and her marriage to Thomas McPherson, Jr.

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers becoming a United States magistrate judge in 1992

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her class action lawsuit against promotion discriminations in the Montgomery County Sheriff Department

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her experience as a United States magistrate judge for the Middle District of Alabama

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson talks about judging discrimination cases

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson reflects upon her community involvement and the African American community in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson shares her messages for future generations

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes her life after retirement

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson talks about her Roots and Wings bookstore in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson reflects upon her regrets

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson shares her hopes for the future

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 9 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson concludes her interview

Tape: 7 Story: 10 - Vanzetta Penn McPherson narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

5$6

DAStory

6$5

DATitle
Vanzetta Penn McPherson recalls her professors at Columbia Law School in New York City, New York
Vanzetta Penn McPherson remembers becoming a United States magistrate judge in 1992
Transcript
Okay. And what was that experience like for you at Columbia [Law School in New York City, New York]?$$It was a delightful experience. I'm a Martian in that I really enjoyed law school. I had a very good time in law school. I think part of the reason is that I was married throughout. So I didn't have to juxtapose, if you will, law study with trying to have a social life. But I also think that the fact that I was pregnant my entire third year made it just a wonderful time. And the fact that I had an easy pregnancy, made it a wonderful time. When I was a first year student at Columbia, you walked in the door and to your right was a room full of students mingling over doughnuts. We don't know where those doughnuts came from, but they were there every morning, along with coffee. That was a real thing. I was in law school when Roe v. Wade was decided [1973]. A delightfully intriguing time for change. I was in law school when Willis [L.M.] Reese taught conflicts. When Michael [I.] Sovern was the dean. Which E.--which [Edward] E. Allan Farnsworth taught first year contracts. When Professor [Albert J.] Rosenthal taught secured transactions. And people who are lawyers will understand why this was such a wonderful place to be. When Curtis Berger taught real property. I was in law school with professors who wrote the law books. That in and of itself was fascinating. But I was also in law school when [Supreme Court Associate Justice] William O. Douglas, who graduated from Columbia in 1925, visited the law school and signed my constitutional law book. I was also in law school when Howard Cosell, another graduate of Columbia law school [sic, Cosell attended New York University School of Law], regularly came and waxed eloquently about first one thing and then another. Not the least of which was Muhammad Ali.$So after sixteen years in private practice what happens next?$$Quite shockingly I attended in August of 1991 a judicial conference. Every federal district, and there are 94 of them in America, every federal district that is of the judiciary has what is called a judicial conference every year or every other year. In 1991 I attended the judicial conference for the Middle District of Alabama at the Grove--Grove Inn [Omni Grove Park Inn], a very well-known establishment, lodging establishment in Asheville, North Carolina. Beautiful site. I didn't know that the Middle District was adding a United States magistrate judge's position at the time. I learned it there and I was encouraged by a sitting magistrate judge, as well as one of the deans of civil rights law practice here, Solomon Seay [Jr.], to apply for the position. I had loosely entertained thoughts throughout my practice of being a judge. I'd wondered about it. I was curious about how it was. I knew I did not want to be a state court judge because I have some difficulty dealing with the election of judges, especially the way it's done in Alabama. So I knew I would never run for a judgeship. The appointment process appealed to me. So I applied. And on January 10th of 1992 the Chief Judge of the federal court, [HM] Myron Herbert Thompson, called me to tell me I had been selected. And I entered the service on April 6th of 1992 and served as a United States magistrate judge until October 31st of last year, 2006. Very different experience from private practice. And very different experience from solo practice.

Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth

One of the most relentless figures of the Civil Rights Movement, the Reverend Fred Lee Shuttlesworth was born on March 18, 1922, in Montgomery County, Alabama. His biological father was Vetta Greene. However, Shuttlesworth was raised by his mother, Alberta Robinson Shuttlesworth and his stepfather, William Nathan Shuttlesworth, a farmer in rural Oxmoor, Alabama. Shuttlesworth attended Oxmoor Elementary School where he was mentored by teacher Israel Ramsey. He started as a student at Wenonah School, but graduated from Rosedale High School in 1940. Shuttlesworth married Ruby Keeler, a nurse, in 1941 and moved to Mobile in 1943 where he became a truck driver and studied auto mechanics. Rev. E.A. Palmer encouraged Shuttlesworth to attend Cedar Grove Academy, a local bible college. In 1945, he delivered a sermon at Selma University and decided to pursue his A.B. degree there and later at Alabama State College. By 1950, Shuttlesworth was the pastor of First Baptist Church in Selma, Alabama, and in 1953, he returned to Birmingham as pastor of Bethel Baptist Church.

In May of 1956, at a mass meeting at Bethel, Shuttlesworth established the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights (ACMHR). In December of that year, the United States Supreme Court ruled that bus segregation in Montgomery, Alabama, was illegal. Shuttlesworth immediately announced that the ACMHR was going to test segregation laws in Birmingham. On Christmas night the Shuttlesworth house was blown up by sixteen sticks of Ku Klux Klan dynamite. Shuttlesworth, who landed in the basement and whose bedroom was blown apart, and visiting Deacon Charles Robinson were unharmed. Shuttlesworth, then, led a rally the very next day. He was beaten by police in 1957 for trying to enroll his daughter in an all white school and that same year joined with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Ralph David Abernathy, and Bayard Rustin to form the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). He also assisted the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE) in organizing the Freedom Rides. Shuttlesworth was hospitalized in 1963 as a result of being attacked by Sheriff Bull Connor’s water cannons as he led a mass nonviolent demonstration. However, Shuttlesworth continued to work to secure Birmingham’s public accommodations and the desegregation of its schools.

In 1966, Shuttlesworth became the pastor of the Greater New Light Baptist Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, and served as founding director of the Shuttlesworth Housing Foundation. The recipient of numerous awards, Shuttlesworth was a remarkable figure and unsung hero of the Civil Rights Movement.

Shuttlesworth passed away on October 5, 2011.

Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 25, 2006.

Accession Number

A2006.053

Sex

Male

Interview Date

3/25/2006

Last Name

Shuttlesworth

Maker Category
Schools

Rosedale High School

Wenonah School

Oxmoor Elementary School

Selma University

Cedar Grove Preparatory Academy

First Name

Fred

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

SHU01

Favorite Season

None

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Alabama

Birth Date

3/18/1922

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Birmingham

Country

United States

Favorite Food

None

Death Date

10/5/2011

Short Description

Civil rights activist, pastor, and foundation executive Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth (1922 - 2011 ) established the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights (ACMHR) in 1956, and joined Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Ralph David Abernathy, and Bayard Rustin to form the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in 1956. In 1966, Shuttlesworth became the pastor of the Greater New Light Baptist Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, and served as founding director of the Shuttlesworth Housing Foundation.

Employment

First Baptist Church of Selma

Bethel Baptist Church

Revelation Baptist Church

Greater New Light Baptist Church

Favorite Color

Pink, Yellow

Timing Pairs
0,0:1536,208:79240,1163:89190,1256:102528,1453:134064,1806:162480,1982:163429,2075:169196,2167:191377,2469:226027,3136:228985,3261:231595,3398:258190,3633$0,0:285,42:1520,56:2280,260:60670,837:90580,1161:99028,1262:111499,1451:150116,1939:228498,2574:229770,2614:233881,2838:251030,3154
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his biological father

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his stepfather

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes Oxmoor, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth talks about his father and stepfather

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers Oxmoor Elementary School near Birmingham, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls St. Matthew A.M.E. Church Oxmoor

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth talks about early transit in Birmingham, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers his grandfather's mule, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers his grandfather's mule, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his stepfather's bootlegging operations

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his stepfather's treatment of his children

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his parents' relationship, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his parents' relationship, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers his stepfather's stature

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his teacher at Oxmoor Elementary School, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his teacher at Oxmoor Elementary School, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes Rosedale High School

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers his stepfather's death

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his teachers at Rosedale High School

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls the white residents of Oxmoor, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers his arrest for bootlegging

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his work experiences after high school

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls meeting his wife, Ruby Keeler Shuttlesworth

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers the early years of his marriage

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls moving to Mobile, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his home in Mobile, Alabama, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his home in Mobile, Alabama, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers his call to ministry in Mobile, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls joining the Baptist church

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls speaking at Selma University in Selma, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his house in Mobile, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls attending Selma University

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls preaching at First Baptist Church of Selma, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls preaching at First Baptist Church of Selma, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers pastoring First Baptist Church of Selma

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his invitation to pastor Bethel Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his sermons

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his civil rights activity in Alabama

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his first sermon at Bethel Baptist Church

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his activism as a preacher

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth describes his entry to the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls the prohibition of the NAACP in Alabama

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls organizing the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers the bombing of his home, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers the bombing of his home, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

5$6

DAStory

4$6

DATitle
Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth recalls his invitation to pastor Bethel Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama
Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth remembers the bombing of his home, pt. 2
Transcript
So well how did you get the church in Birmingham [Alabama]? How did you--?$$Accident.$$Okay what happened?$$I was getting ready to--I wanted to go to Florida. T.J. Hale [ph.] who was pastor, see the biggest church there, can't think of the name of it. Think of it in a minute. He was going to Florida to preach. D.L. Motley was pastor of the church in Mobile [Alabama] and he had been called to Bethel Baptist Church in Birmingham. Look how the incidental, coincidental this is. And T.J. Hale said well--and Motley was somewhere in, one of the churches talking. I said, "Well I want to go to Florida. I want to go to Pensacola [Florida] out there." And he was going that day. He said, well Motley said, "Well I look, I'm called to Bethel Church in Birmingham, and I can't go Sunday so they want me to send somebody. So I'm asking you to go." I said, "Well no I don't go to no church preaching. I'm not interested in it, it's yours. You just tell them." He said "But they want you, they want you to come." They didn't know me. My uncle, wife's [Ruby Keeler Shuttlesworth] uncle lived in Birmingham as you know. But I had never been to Bethel. I didn't know anything about the church. He said, well so Reverend Hale said, "Well look, I'm going to Florida again in two or three months and you can go down there and be preaching and be heard if you want to." And I go then, so that made me say, Motley said, "Well fool, you can get you some grits, you know." You know and I didn't have no church. And four children now, see. I said, "Well I'll go, but I ain't going up there but one time and preach for you." So I went up and preached at Bethel that Sunday morning. And boy it was like cheerleading segment. People just took, I got--I didn't preach about twenty-five, thirty minutes that time. And they said, "Get that man's address. We want him. We want this man to preach." We, well someone was saying, "If we heard this man, we never would have called that--." And this is embarrassing to me, just to go and preach you know. And I'm making it sure in my mind I wouldn't come back again. And so that week Motley called, "They say they want you back at Bethel next." I said, "I ain't coming, I ain't going back, I told you the first time I wasn't coming back." I said, "I don't play with the church." I wasn't, I wasn't gonna to--he said, "Well no, I just can't go Sunday." I said, "But Motley ain't no use in us lying to each other, we're friends. You gonna need--," I said, "I am not interested in that church." He said, "Well I got to do something else and I, I would be telling them that I would come back that next--." I said, "Well if you let me tell them you coming next Thursday, I'll go tell, go then." So I went back and preached. And boy it, they just took--it was just like your hands going in the glove, tremendous. So I told them he was coming that Thursday night. I say, "He said he'd be here to see y'all Thursday night." That Thursday night it rained. You ever see in the day time when it rain so bad, get dark and cloudy and you can't, you can't even see the road hardly to drive, see cars pulling over. Well that night, that Thursday afternoon, that night he was supposed to be there, it was like that. It was pouring down rain. But they unanimously met out there and called me and didn't know me. It had to be God or somebody and look at the work I've done in--and that church was bombed twice while I was there. I told them, I said if I stay here, it might get bombed again. So that, that had to be God. So God moves in human affairs once in a while. Go ahead.$What--do you remember? Well just tell us what else you remember about what happened that night. You were, you were talking to one of the deacons.$$He was talking to me, he was sitting by my bed. I had a mirror near 'bout, not quite wide as that thing. And that bomb went off. I knew what, I knew it was meant for me like I'm looking at you again. I mean directly. I knew I wouldn't get hurt. How did I know? I was comforted. I knew I wasn't gonna get hurt. I was not afraid of dying. In fact I felt better. I don't think any baby ever felt as comfortable or even more comfortable at his mother's breast. As to what was on my mind at the time the bomb went off, was this 27 Psalm, "The Lord is my light and my salvation" [Psalm 27:1]. I knew it was a bomb. I knew I wouldn't get hurt. I was not afraid of dying. I could understand that God was there. And look like I just, I could discern my conscience, look I'm here. And so I never felt better. So this, this wall was flew--blown out from under the bed, the springs was shattered. We didn't find any large pieces of fingers (unclear), these three fingers--springs I'm talking about. The wall between my head and the dynamite was blown away at least to the corner of that thing there like that. That--course my teeth was sitting on the, on the floor.$$You're talking about, about ten, fifteen feet away, right?$$Yeah, yeah, right. And that mirror was shattered I guess into a million pieces (unclear). He got two, two or three little pin pricks in his head. Didn't no blood run. He was stunned I think. He said the Lord saved me because I was with you. I said that he did Charlie, Charlie Robinson [Charles Robinson] was his name.$$Sully Robinson?$$Charlie, Charlie.$$Charlie, okay.$$Charlie, Charles Robinson. Floor was blown out from under the bed. Part of the floor was arced up into a little open face. (Unclear) put the heat out, the wall, the center wall of the house now, was like this. It was about thirty something degrees. Not standing straight up. About three or four hundred slithers of wood from that wall behind my head was stuck into that wall, into a coat and hat I had on that wall. And we, when we found the head of the bed where my, my head--I'm in bed. But a, a shaft of wood had come through that head of my bed and probably traveled a little further than, might have been driven into my brain where I was lying.$$This is incredible. I mean, I mean that--$$God's more than incredible. That's what I'm says, that's why he can handle incredible things (laughter). That, tomorrow, all this. I have no, I have problem telling you.$$So I mean, so this is fully documented. You walked away from a bombing.$$Yes sir.$$When things all around you were destroyed.$$Absolutely.$$And you led a march the next day, right?$$Like I said I would, um-hm. I never say I'm gonna do something I don't do.$$So were, were you stunned at all by any of this, or did you--$$(Shakes head) Never felt better. Never had a, felt a little (unclear) fire he can't put out. He say I got a bump. I said that's a writer's bump, I never had any bump. Not even a scratch.

Paul Delaney

Distinguished veteran print journalist and activist Paul Delaney was born in Montgomery, Alabama, on January 13, 1933. Delaney attended Ohio State University where he received his B.A. degree in journalism. Paul Delaney’s writing and leadership as a proponent of civil and humanitarian rights has led to his distinction and recognition as a journalist, humanitarian, scholar and activist.

Delaney’s career began at the Atlanta Daily World amidst the Civil Rights Movement. While at the Atlanta Daily World, Delaney covered some of the most important figures and events of the Civil Rights Movement. From Atlanta, Delaney went to work for the Dayton Daily News in Dayton, Ohio, and the Washington Star in Washington, D.C. Delaney next joined the New York Times Washington, D.C. bureau, where he covered urban affairs, politics, and civil rights. Delaney served in the Chicago Bureau of the New York Times as bureau chief in Madrid, Spain, an editor on the national news desk, and senior editor for newsroom administration. Paul Delaney spent twenty-three years with the New York Times as an editor and correspondent where he rose to national prominence as an African American journalist. Delaney became recognized for being one of the most prominent journalists of African American heritage in the world. Delaney served from 1992 to 1996 as the first African American chair of the University of Alabama’s journalism department, editor of the editorial page of Our World News from 1996 to 1998, and wrote editorials for the Baltimore Sun from 1999 to 2000.

Delaney was one of the founders of the National Association of Black Journalists and a member of the Overseas Press Club; the Society of Silurians; the Society of Professional Journalists; and the board for National Public Radio. Delaney was also on the selection committee for the Media Fellows in Health Program at the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Delaney went on to direct the Initiative on Racial Mythology of the Gene Media Forum sponsored by Syracuse University.

Accession Number

A2005.186

Sex

Male

Interview Date

8/5/2005

Last Name

Delaney

Maker Category
Schools

Loveless Academic Magnet Prog High School

Alabama State University

The Ohio State University

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Paul

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

DEL03

Favorite Season

Winter

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

Casa Del Sol

Favorite Quote

Be Cool.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

1/13/1933

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Fish (Red Snapper)

Short Description

Journalism professor and newspaper correspondent Paul Delaney (1933 - ) has had a long and prestigious career as a print journalist that spanned the Civil Rights Movement, and continued well into the 21st century.

Employment

Atlanta Daily World

Dayton Daily News

Washington Star

New York Times

University of Alabama

Baltimore Sun

Our World News

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:2972,68:3819,82:26940,326:37854,543:53829,791:66924,965:80789,1090:81500,1137:85055,1268:85687,1277:100810,1490:104980,1541$0,0:11626,200:18898,268:19542,277:20738,291:23314,343:42326,611:42766,617:48486,732:49630,744:51302,757:66910,963:67270,968:79198,1056:88500,1137
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Paul Delaney's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Paul Delaney lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Paul Delaney talks about his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Paul Delaney talks about his father

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Paul Delaney talks about his paternal grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Paul Delaney lists his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Paul Delaney describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Paul Delaney describes his family life and community in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Paul Delaney describes the sights, sounds and smells of his neighborhood in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Paul Delaney describes his childhood personality and lists his favorite teachers from elementary and high school

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Paul Delaney talks about his childhood aspirations to travel and write

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Paul Delaney describes his activities during high school

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Paul Delaney talks about his college experience and being stationed in Bordeaux, France while serving in the U.S. Army

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Paul Delaney recalls trying to rattle student complacency when he was an editor of The Ohio State University's paper, The Lantern in the mid-1950s

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Paul Delaney recalls race relations at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio during the mid-1950s

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Paul Delaney talks about trying to find a job in journalism after graduating from college and being hired by the Atlanta Daily World in 1959

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Paul Delaney recalls moving to Atlanta, Georgia in 1960 and the reaction of the city's leaders to the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Paul Delaney talks about his early reporting for the Atlanta Daily World and lists figures from the Civil Rights Movement he met in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Paul Delaney reflects upon Atlanta Daily World editor C.A. Scott's opposition to the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Paul Delaney talks about being a probation officer and being hired by the Dayton Daily News in 1963

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Paul Delaney talks about working as a reporter for the Dayton Daily News in Dayton, Ohio

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Paul Delaney talks about covering Washington, D.C.'s government, following its reorganization in 1967, for the Washington Star

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Paul Delaney talks about starting the Atlanta Inquirer and the opposition to Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Paul Delaney recalls the national trends he covered as an urban affairs correspondent for the New York Times during the early 1970s

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Paul Delaney recalls his reporting for the New York Times Chicago Bureau from 1974 through 1977, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Paul Delaney reflects upon the media coverage of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Paul Delaney recalls his reporting for the New York Times Chicago Bureau from 1974 through 1977, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Paul Delaney talks about becoming an editor of The New York Times in 1977

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Paul Delaney reflects upon the resistance to U.S. foreign policy in Arab countries in the 1980s

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Paul Delaney reflects upon the changes in Spain after the end of Francisco Franco's dictatorship

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Paul Delaney talks about the pressure living overseas puts on a journalist's family life

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Paul Delaney talks about his family

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Paul Delaney recalls living in Madrid, Spain when he was the New York Times bureau chief in Madrid, Spain

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Paul Delaney talks about addressing the lack of diversity in the New York Times newsroom

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Paul Delaney remembers the formation of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) in 1975

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Paul Delaney talks about being the chair of the journalism department at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Paul Delaney details his career since 1996

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Paul Delaney reflects upon representations of hip hop by the media and the progress of African American professionals in the media

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Paul Delaney reflects upon the role of media in American society

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Paul Delaney remembers his mentors at the Atlanta Daily World, Dayton Daily News and New York Times

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Paul Delaney reflects upon the next generation of journalists

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Paul Delaney reflects upon his life, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Paul Delaney shares advice for people interested in a career in journalism

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Paul Delaney reflects upon his life, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Paul Delaney describes his concerns for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Paul Delaney reflects upon memorable life lessons

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Paul Delaney talks about the employment crisis for young African American men

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Paul Delaney describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Paul Delaney explains why he believes history is important

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Paul Delaney reflects upon his legacy

DASession

1$1

DATape

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DAStory

6$4

DATitle
Paul Delaney reflects upon Atlanta Daily World editor C.A. Scott's opposition to the Civil Rights Movement
Paul Delaney remembers the formation of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) in 1975
Transcript
How long did you stay with the Atlanta Daily World?$$I was with the World for two years before I was fired.$$Fired for what?$$I used to argue with C.A. Scott [Cornelius Adolphus Scott] everyday about our coverage of the [Civil Rights] Movement. He was--the World was against the movement, and would editorialize and skew the coverage, and I used to fight through every day. And eventually I was fired. And I knew I was going to be fired, but eventually I was fired.$$Structurally, who else was making decisions at the Atlanta Daily World at that time?$$C.A. Scott made--he was the editor, publisher.$$Okay.$$So the buck stopped with him. And he was thoroughly against the movement.$$And do you recall his explanation to you for being against the movement?$$Well, he, you know, I think he reflected the attitude of a whole lot of the older blacks in town, the older black (unclear). One, they didn't want Atlanta [Georgia] to become a Birmingham [Alabama]; two, there were students who were leading this movement, and these students were a threat these guys, their leadership. And they were losing control and they didn't want to do that. So they were against the movement. And they felt they would lose economically if things--if Atlanta got a bad image in the national press. And so, they truly did not want these things to happen, did not want the demonstrations in Atlanta. And they knew that if the movement continued, there would be that kind of stuff in Atlanta, which would challenge their leadership. And eventually it did.$So by the time you are making this transition from being really staying the senior editor, but just moving back, 1992, what were you doing after that?$$Well, let me back up. One other thing--another thing, on that very topic on changing the color of the newsroom, in order to facilitate to help that change, a group of us formed the National Association of Black Journalists [NABJ] in 1975, mostly from big papers. We got together after years of trying to get together to do something about the fact that there were few blacks in the newsroom, we didn't get promoted, we didn't get certain jobs like covering major events, like covering the White House [Washington, D.C.], covering [U.S.] Congress. And so, we formed NABJ to put pressure on companies to help do that. And so, by time I got to the newsroom--got in to newsroom administration, we were doing this. We had our team of people trying to do that, to change the newsroom. Thought I'd left out that fact that we formed the NABJ for that exact purpose. And by 1992 when I left the [New York] Times or '93 [1993], we were still far behind in trying to colorize the newsroom.

Paul Adams, III

Born September 14, 1940, Paul Joseph Adams III learned the value of education from his parents, Patsy Lois and Paul Adams, Jr., who enrolled him in private elementary and high schools in his hometown of Montgomery, Alabama. After receiving a B.A. from Alabama State University, Adams moved north to Chicago, where he worked in mental health education while earning his M.A. in psychology from Northeastern Illinois University.

In 1971, Adams was hired as director of guidance for Providence-St. Mel School, a private Catholic high school in Chicago. He became the school's principal a year later. When the Archdiocese of Chicago withdrew funding for the school in 1978, Adams spearheaded a national campaign to raise money for the school. In response to his publicity-seeking efforts and the support of the Providence-St. Mel students and community, the school received local and national media attention. Donations poured in from across the country, and Adams transitioned Providence-St. Mel into a not-for-profit independent school.

At Providence-St. Mel, Adams focused on developing a strong academic standard while enforcing strict disciplinary codes. To guarantee the safety of his students, he moved into the vacant convent inside the school to ward off thieves and vandals. His dedication became legendary and during the next two decades, Adams successfully transformed Providence-St. Mel into a premier learning institution for African American students.

Since 1996, Adams has served as president of Providence-St. Mel School, managing an annual budget in excess of $6 million. He is still very active in planning the curriculum for the school, which has expanded to include elementary and middle grades. Under Adams' leadership, every one of Providence-St. Mel's graduating seniors has been accepted to institutions of higher learning.

Adams has received numerous awards for his efforts, including the McDonald's Education Achievement Award, the African-American Male Image Award, the Rozell R. Nesbitt Community Education Award, and four honorary doctorates. Adams was named an American Hero in Education by Reader's Digest and was voted Man of the Year by the Chicago Urban League.

Accession Number

A2003.307

Sex

Male

Archival Photo 1
Interview Date

3/11/2003

Last Name

Adams

Maker Category
Middle Name

J.

Schools

Alabama State University Laboratory School

Southern Normal School

Alabama State University

Northeastern Illinois University

Archival Photo 2
First Name

Paul

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

ADA02

Favorite Season

Spring, Summer

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

Las Vegas, Nevada

Favorite Quote

Make a way or find a way.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Birth Date

9/14/1940

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Pork Chops

Short Description

Civil rights activist and high school principal Paul Adams, III (1940 - ) is the founding director of the independent Providence-St. Mel High School.

Employment

Providence St. Mel High School

Jack-in-the-Box Restaurant (1969 - 1972)

Chicago State Hospital

Favorite Color

Blue

DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Paul Adams's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Paul Adams's favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Paul Adams discusses his family's geographical origins

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Paul Adams describes his attempts to research his background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Paul Adams tells of conflicting stories in his genealogical research

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Paul Adams mentions two tragic family stories

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Paul Adams remembers his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Paul Adams mentions his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Paul Adams remembers his father

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Paul Adams describes his childhood household

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Paul Adams remembers nostalgic smells from childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Paul Adams describes his childhood community

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Paul Adams as a child

Tape: 1 Story: 14 - Paul Adams discusses his mentors

Tape: 1 Story: 15 - Paul Adams mentions his childhood schools

Tape: 1 Story: 16 - Paul Adams as a high school student

Tape: 1 Story: 17 - Paul Adams describes why he does not attend church

Tape: 1 Story: 18 - Paul Adams reflects on his involvement in the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 1 Story: 19 - Paul Adams discusses Mr. E. D. Nixon

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Paul Adams discusses the planning of the Montgomery Bus Boycott

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Paul Adams discusses his experience of the Montgomery Bus Boycott

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Paul Adams describes how Emmitt Till's death and television influenced the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Paul Adams meets Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Paul Adams remembers mass meetings

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Paul Adams rides the buses after the Montgomery Bus Boycott

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Paul Adams reflects on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Paul Adams discusses Robert Nesbitt

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Paul Adams explains his commitment to the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Paul Adams attend Alabama State University

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Paul Adams is expelled from Alabama State University

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Paul Adams talks about youth in the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 2 Story: 13 - Paul Adams mentions Civil Rights Movement organizers

Tape: 2 Story: 14 - Paul Adams returns to Alabama State University

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Paul Adams moves to Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Paul Adams describes his work for the Chicago State Hospital

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Paul Adams discusses his impression of Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Paul Adams looks for a job in Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Paul Adams goes into business

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Paul Adams remembers the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Paul Adams recalls his last interaction with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Paul Adams describes the 1965 March from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Paul Adams reflects on the 1965 March from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Paul Adams returns to Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Paul Adams leaves Jack N' the Box

Tape: 3 Story: 12 - Paul Adams provides a brief history of Providence-St. Mel

Tape: 3 Story: 13 - Paul Adams restructures Providence-St. Mel

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Paul Adams fights to keep Providence-St. Mel open

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Paul Adams turns Providence-St. Mel into an independent school

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Paul Adams discusses an anonymous donation to Providence-St. Mel

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Paul Adams discusses public education

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Paul Adams discusses Providence-St. Mel students

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Paul Adams describes his simple education technique

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Paul Adams describes Providence-St. Mel's assessment process

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Paul Adams emphasizes early exposure for students

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Paul Adams discusses parental involvement and continued growth at Providence-St. Mel

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Paul Adams discusses his religious affiliation

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Paul Adams discusses value education

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Paul Adams disagrees with closing schools on Martin Luther King's holiday

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Paul Adams discusses teacher and student role models

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Paul Adams describes his philosophy of education

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Paul Adams discusses Providence-St. Mel School alumni

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Paul Adams discusses his hopes and concerns for the black community

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Paul Adams talks about the failures of the educational system

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Paul Adams discusses restructuring public education

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Paul Adams describes Providence-St. Mel School's high expectations

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Paul Adams discusses the balance between academics and athletics

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Paul Adams discusses the racial makeup of Providence-St. Mel School

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Paul Adams explains how strict rules eliminate behavior problems

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Paul Adams explains the curriculum of Providence-St. Mel School

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Paul Adams discusses the financial difficulties of Providence-St. Mel School

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Paul Adams discusses Providence-St. Mel School's teachers

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Paul Adams describes his legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Paul Adams describes how he wants to be remembered

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Photo -- Paul Adams's First Grade Picture in Montgomery, Alabama (1946)

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Photo -- Paul Adams as President of Providence-St. Mel School

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Photo -- Paul Adams as Infant (1940)

Tape: 6 Story: 12 - Photo -- Paul Adams and Jeanette DiBella, Principal of Providence-St. Mel School (circa 2000)

Tape: 6 Story: 13 - Photo -- Paul Adams (circa 1958)

Tape: 6 Story: 14 - Photo -- Paul Adams (1963)

Tape: 6 Story: 15 - Photo -- Paul Adams Calling Bingo Numbers for Fundraiser (late 1970s)

Tape: 6 Story: 16 - Photo -- Paul Adams (1996)

Tape: 6 Story: 17 - Photo -- Paul Adams and President Ronald Reagan, Among Others (1983)

Tape: 6 Story: 18 - Photo -- Paul Adams (1979)

Tape: 6 Story: 19 - Photo -- Paul Adams and Parents Protesting the Closure of Providence-St. Mel School (1978)

Tape: 6 Story: 20 - Photo -- Paul Adams Teaching Guidance (late 1970s)

Tape: 6 Story: 21 - Photo -- Paul Adams in 'People Magazine' (1978)

Tape: 6 Story: 22 - Photo -- Paul Adams (Mar 1965)

Tape: 6 Story: 23 - Photo -- Paul Adams and President Ronald Reagan

Tape: 6 Story: 24 - Newspaper Advertisement -- Paul Adams and Providence-St. Mel School Students in Wall Street Journal (Jun 1978)

Tape: 6 Story: 25 - Photo -- Paul Adams with Reverend Jesse Jackson and Providence-St. Mel School Alumna, Monica Thorns (1983)

Tape: 6 Story: 26 - Photo -- Paul Adams with Daughter, Bridget (circa 2002)

The Honorable Dorothy Tillman

Civil rights activist and former city alderman Dorothy Wright Tillman was born on May 12, 1947 in Montgomery, Alabama, and joined the Civil Rights Movement at the age of sixteen.

As a trainee and a field staff organizer with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) she fought for equality and political consciousness. She helped Dr. King organize in Chicago, where she met her future husband and father of her children, Jimmy Lee Tillman. She also participated in the march on the Edmund-Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama. This march, later known as Bloody Sunday, was a turning point in the battle to insure the right to vote for African American citizens.

Tillman and her husband Jimmy moved to San Francisco soon after they were married, where she successfully mobilized residents in her public housing community in a battle for local public transportation. After the family moved back to Chicago, Tillman organized a group of concerned parents and fought for quality education in their community. She founded the Parent Equalizers of Chicago, with over 300 schools participating. This set the groundwork for school reform in Chicago.

In 1985, Tillman became the first woman to serve as alderman of Chicago's Third Ward. As a major political figure in Chicago, she has been highly involved in numerous community-building activities, including projects related to issues of inner-city education, housing and homelessness. Tillman has also been an influential player in the movement for slave reparations. She has received numerous awards and recognition for her local, national and global activism and has been featured in various books and television features.

Dorothy Tillman was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on September 5, 2002.

Accession Number

A2002.178

Sex

Female

Interview Date

9/5/2002

Last Name

Tillman

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Daisy Lawrence

Booker T. Washington Magnet High School

First Name

Dorothy

Birth City, State, Country

Montgomery

HM ID

TIL01

Favorite Season

None

Sponsor

Miles and Stockbridge LLP

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Birth Date

5/12/1947

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Seafood

Short Description

Civil rights activist and city alderman The Honorable Dorothy Tillman (1947 - ) started her involvement in the Civil Rights Movement at the age of sixteen as a trainee and a field staff organizer for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Tillman is a reparations activist and former Chicago alderman.

Employment

City of Chicago

Main Sponsor
Favorite Color

Red

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Dorothy Tillman's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Dorothy Tillman lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Dorothy Tillman describes her grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Dorothy Tillman remembers the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Dorothy Tillman recalls growing up in the Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Dorothy Tillman describes her family

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Dorothy Tillman describes her personality as a child

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Dorothy Tillman describes her experiences at school

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Dorothy Tillman talks about her teachers

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Dorothy Tillman remembers clashing with the principal

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Dorothy Tillman talks about youth activism yesterday and today

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Dorothy Tillman describes the sights, sounds, and smells of growing up in Montgomery, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Dorothy Tillman describes her involvement with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Dorothy Tillman talks about the art of being a nonviolent scientist

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Dorothy Tillman recalls Bloody Sunday in Selma, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Dorothy Tillman describes the aftermath of Bloody Sunday in Selma, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Dorothy Tillman talks about moving to Chicago, Illinois in 1965

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Dorothy Tillman talks about Dr. King's discomfort in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Dorothy Tillman shares her impressions of Chicago, Illinois in 1965

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Dorothy Tillman describes the different approaches within the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Dorothy Tillman talks about the Civil Rights backlash

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Dorothy Tillman talks about her family

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Dorothy Tillman describes her decision to run for alderman in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Dorothy Tillman talks about how her hats became her trademark

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Dorothy Tillman describes Mayor Harold Washington

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Dorothy Tillman describes how she weathered certain political challenges

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Dorothy Tillman talks about African American economic inequality

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Dorothy Tillman describes her work on behalf of the reparations movement

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Dorothy Tillman talks about her political actions in favor of reparations

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Dorothy Tillman shares her views on the future of the reparations movement

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Dorothy Tillman describes her definition of reparations

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Dorothy Tillman reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Dorothy Tillman narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$3

DAStory

8$5

DATitle
Dorothy Tillman talks about Dr. King's discomfort in Chicago, Illinois
Dorothy Tillman describes her decision to run for alderman in Chicago, Illinois
Transcript
(Unclear)--what did--what was it about Chicago [Illinois] that made Dr. King uncomfortable?$$When we first came here?$$Mm-hm.$$I guess in the end you can really see. I didn't know then he just wanted his staff back. He was uncomfortable when we first got here. This is before we were assigned. This is when we was touring. But I know when we came here to stay here, after we was assigned, we had never gone to a city where ministers and politician, black folks, told us to leave. That was a first. Even when we went to other cities and black folks was frightened, or they didn't want us around, they kept their mouth shut. They went out of the way. But these people had a press conference, some of your major politicians. And a lot of 'em are still in office and still around now. Some of your politicians and all of your ministers, the majority of the black ministers, they held a press conference. And they said for Martin [Luther King, Jr.], they wanted us to go back, that they didn't need us here, and we wasn't nothing but some troublemakers. That was really troublesome. And I remember telling Dr. [Marting Luther] King--and I told him I wanted to leave. I didn't like this place. I, I tried everything I could to leave. Send me to Cleveland [Ohio], do anything, send me home; I don't wanna be here. I want to go back to Alabama, anywhere. I'd never seen people like this before, never. And they were all stuck in a ghetto. They couldn't move. They, they couldn't--evidently, they wasn't that happy 'cause soon as we got open housing, they all scattered. So if they was so happy where they was, why did they scatter? But Dr. King was, was--I said though, you know, I don't wanna stay here; and I said that. I--you know, they, they called me the movement baby, and it was very--I must say that I was raised by men, and that's probably why I've all men friends not men friends now, but I was--that's why I probably respect black men, and I knew that black men can make a difference. Some people don't understand or have an experience, but in the movement it was a lot of black men, our leaders. So I know that black men can fight. And you know, so when I said, you know, what--why are we here, I wanna go--and they were very protective of me. I must say they really protected me. And you know, so a lot of say they have not been protected, well, I, I was protected by the black men in the movement. And they always listened when I would speak, and I always got answers. I mean we would never just, no, you don't know what you're talking about. And I said to Dr. King, I don't wanna stay here, 'cause see, he wanted me here. I was trying to really get reassigned. I said they don't want us here. Why do we need to stay here? They don't want us. What are we gonna do? And he said we have to stay here. I said oh, and he said these some strange kind of Negroes in Chicago, he said. The Negroes here are very strange. You think about the plantation in Alabama, but Daley's plantation wipe out Alabama plantation any day.$How did you decide--what made you decide to run for alderman in the Third Ward?$$I didn't decide it; it decided for me. We were very involved in the school struggle, did a lot of things. I really was happy being a mother, for the first time out of the limelight, not struggling, loving my babies, baking bread, make sure their diet is healthy, going to the schools, doing everything. And the school was failing, and I got involved in the school struggle. And then we organized all of these schools all over the city, and. And the demand got pretty high, and we couldn't get the, the elected officials to deal with the educational question. And we decided we had to run, run some people. And I couldn't get anybody to run against Kinnard. Everybody was scared, and I was like forced into it. That's how I did it. I lost by a hundred and something votes. Fine, but the I was--then turned around and appointed by Harold Washington after he went to jail. So I really didn't want to. I did it reluctantly. I just couldn't find anybody else to do it.$$And, and I remember those hectic school years that you were on TV all the time. That, that was your old self coming out.$$Yeah. It was interesting because Jane Byrne said to the press, she said I've done research on this on this woman. She's not just a parent, she's a professional organizer. It frightened her. I worked with--I worked to--in area B to get Jane Byrne elected 'cause I thought we needed a change, and she got in and she turned on us. And I worked just as hard to get her out of there because she, she lied. And--but I was very involved in the school struggle, worked very close with Mayor Washington, even to get him his Congress, as a congressperson and then as mayor. So, I kind of got thrust into it. In fact, I didn't even call for the boycott. It was another parent saying let's boycott. I said do you know what you're talking about? "Yeah," but she really didn't. She didn't know the extent. So then I began to put all my organizing skills into play for the parents, to make sure that the boycott worked, and that's how they elected me to head it up because I knew it was gonna work. We need to take--(unclear)--freedom school because parents needed to have some place to send their children, knew you was gonna get the boycott broken, and you had to call it at a certain time. And we called it during the, during the Christmas break. It was easier to keep the kids out than to pull 'em out. So the parents had to send 'em back.