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Mississippi Journalists,

the Civil Rights Movement, and the Closed Society, 1960-1964


David R. Davies

Presented at the 1994 convention

of the American Journalism Historians Association


Hazel Brannon Smith was entertaining friends in her Lexington, Mississippi, home on Halloween night, 1960, when she heard the sound of exploding firecrackers. Hurrying outside, she saw an eight-foot cross burning on her lawn. Teenagers were retreating into nearby woods. Smith, the veteran editor of the Lexington Advertiser, took a picture of the blazing cross and removed the license plate from the Chevrolet station wagon the teenagers had left behind. The vehicle, Smith found, was licensed to Pat Barrett, the local prosecuting attorney, whose son the editor suspected of taking part in the cross-burning.

Smith said the incident was more than just a Halloween prank; it was a symptom of a community illness in Lexington. What had happened, she believed, was part of her long-running battle with the local affiliate of the white Citizens' Council, an organization dedicated to fighting integration that had painted her as friendly to blacks. She said the teenagers were acting under the influence of Barrett and other state and community leaders influenced by the Citizens' Council. "The cross was burned on my lawn this time," Smith warned her readers in an editorial. "Next time it could be yours."(1)

Smith was among a handful of five Mississippi newspaper editors who defended blacks and challenged the racial mores of Mississippi society in the early 1960s, a time when extreme racism dominated the state. The editors won more acclaim outside the state than in it; three won Pulitzer Prizes for editorial writing in their careers. Smith won in 1964; Ira B. Harkey, Jr., of the Pascagoula Chronicle had won in 1963; and Hodding Carter Jr. of the Greenville Delta Democrat-Times had won in 1946. J. Oliver Emmerich Jr. of the McComb Enterprise-Journal and P.D. East of the Petal Paper won lesser fame for their courage but not Pulitzers.

This paper examines these editors' dealings with and coverage of the civil rights struggle in their communities and in Mississippi. Their coverage of civil rights is contrasted with that of the dominant Mississippi press, typified by the Jackson Daily News, from 1960 to 1964, a period of great upheaval in a state that was one of the nation's major civil rights battlegrounds. This four-year period saw the first stirrings of the student sit-in movement, the freedom rides, the Ole Miss Crisis, the assassination of Medgar Evers, the events of Mississippi Freedom Summer, and the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Through it all, these editors seldom went so far as to encourage integration; in fact, several were segregationists. But their criticism of the excesses of Mississippi's dominant white society set them apart from the rest of Mississippi and of the Mississippi press.

Southern press performance during the civil rights era is a little-studied component of African-Americans' long battle for equal rights. Most books on the civil rights era mention press performance only in passing. While some Southern journalists who wrote in the 1950s and 1960s have written their memoirs, little work has been done documenting the broad role of Southern journalists who spoke in this period for reason, justice, and peace, often at great personal risk. Such courageous journalism is not noteworthy because it brought immediate results; in fact, impassioned editorials seldom moved mountains in the fight against bigotry. Still, such journalism often represented the only public dissent by whites against Southern racial mores, an important crack in the wall of racist orthodoxy that dominated the Deep South through the early 1960s before crumbling in the years after.(2)

The Jackson Daily News

Mississippi's entrenched segregation was described by James Silver as a "closed society," in which the tenets of white supremacy dominated the state and relegated blacks to second-class citizenship. Blacks were strictly segregated from whites and were not allowed the vote or other rights. Whites who did not go along with this orthodoxy were pressured to conform by the white Citizens' Councils, an outgrowth of the Southern white backlash against the school desegregation mandate of Brown v. Board of Education in 1954. Founded in Mississippi, the organization spread across the South to fight integration.(3)

The Mississippi press, for its part, vigilantly guarded "the racial, economic, political, and religious orthodoxy of the closed society," according to Silver. Both Jackson newspapers, the state's largest, the Clarion-Ledger and the Daily News, were owned by the Hederman family, and Silver maintained that they dominated Mississippi thought. The Hedermans owned the Hattiesburg American newspaper as well as a Jackson television station. Their tight control of the Jackson media market had prompted area businessmen to band together to form a rival newspaper, the Jackson State-Times, but the newspaper died in 1962 for want of financial support. The Columbia Journalism Review, in a 1967 article reviewing Southern newspapers' coverage of civil rights issues, called Mississippi newspapers the weakest in the nation. The Clarion-Ledger and the Daily News were singled out as "quite possibly the worst metropolitan papers in the United States."(4) Both papers supported the Citizens' Councils editorially.(5)

The Jackson Daily News, Jackson's afternoon paper, typified the quality of the Hederman papers and the coverage most of the Mississippi press afforded to civil rights and race issues. Its editor in the early 1960s was Jimmy Ward, a firebrand who held forth in a front-page column, "Covering the Crossroads."

Ward's column featured his comments on items in the news, and he often referred to civil rights events.

When the freedom riders integrating interstate bus transportation crossed into Alabama in May 1961, Ward called the riders a "band of crackpots." The same day, he commented on the growing number of blacks in Washington: "Word from Washington is that city is getting so black the lightning bugs are coming out in the daytime."(6)

When the riders arrived in Jackson May 24, 1961, Ward called the riders "human freaks." The next day, the editor derided the riders as "idiotic agitating nitwits" and "abnormal mammals" who, in their effort to desegregate bus station restrooms and cafeterias, had come to Jackson for the "dubious honor of standing hip-to-hip before a bus station urinal with each other." He invited the students to return to the North to solve their own region's race problems, such as the high number of rapes in that "model city for race mixing," Washington, D.C., and the high juvenile delinquency rate in New York City.(7)

In news articles, anyone who favored integration, or "race-mixing," was dubbed a "mixer" in the newspaper's headlines. But despite the headlines, wire articles written by Associated Press and United Press International correspondents covering freedom rides outside Mississippi were generally balanced as printed in the Daily News, containing even the "mixers'" versions of events. When the freedom riders were savagely attacked in Montgomery, Alabama, the Daily News wire article was headlined, "Mixers Attacked in Montgomery," and a smaller headline noted that a white mob had beaten the integrationists.(8) Similarly, a wire service retrospective on the Brown decision bore the headline, "Seven Years Under Black Monday Rule," but the article below it was balanced, containing views of integrationists as well as segregationists.(9)

But staff-written articles about the rides were more one-sided, speculative, and opinionated. A locally written article about the freedom riders in Alabama quoted no one by name, but said "Montgomery hotel-lobby experts" were blaming out-of-state demonstrators for the trouble. The "average man on the street" was said to be surprised at the recent turn of events, which included a mob attacking the riders in Birmingham and setting fire to their bus in Anniston. "[W]hen Anniston and Birmingham reacted so positively last Sunday, it should have been sufficient to let anybody know that aggressive violations of Alabama law would evoke reactions if continued, local residents insist," the Daily News reported.(10)

As the riders neared Mississippi, the Daily News' coverage tended to focus on state leaders' preparations for the riders. The views of civil rights workers were not sought, but the opinions of Citizens' Council leaders were. Citizens' Council administrator William J. Simmons characterized the bus-riding students as "invading integrationists" and asked rhetorically whether the federal government, which had finally escorted the freedom riders through Alabama, would show the same solicitude for a Council expedition to the "heart of Harlem" to break Northern laws and customs. Mississippi Governor Ross Barnett offered moral support to Alabama Governor John Patterson over the latter's experience with the riders and prepared for their arrival in Mississippi.(11)

Editor Ward approvingly noted the state's preparations. While he warned locals to let the police deal with the integrationists, he paradoxically continued to attack the riders in inflammatory language. And while Ward said calm people regretted the "unfortunate mob action" in Alabama, "On the other hand there is no weeping in the street down here because one of the invading screwballs got his hair parted."(12)

Arriving in Jackson, the freedom riders were quickly arrested without incident. "Mixers Reach Jackson With No Violence," the Daily News announced, and an accompanying front-page editorial lauded Barnett for his law-and-order stand. The editorial questioned whether the freedom riders properly belonged in the local jail, the mental hospital, or the zoo. "These people," Ward repeated, "are crackpots."(13)

As arrests mounted the following day, still with no violence, Ward congratulated the community in a front-page, signed editorial for maintaining Southern hospitality during adversity. The "mixers," Ward said, had made Mississippi look good. "We wish for these vulgar, restroom-loving quacks a pleasant journey home. Thanks to them for favors done in their illegal, scummy mission."(14)

As the arrests continued, the Daily News continued to poke fun at the riders by one turn, then excoriate them at another. On the same day Ward derided the "silly cranky visitors" as welfare cheaters and an editorial accused them of failing to bathe, the editor attacked the riders for uttering unspecified lies about Mississippi. "Social gangsters in our midst have spent years slandering and libeling all of us. It will take a long time to erase their filthy-minded lies."(15)

As the riders filled the local jail through the last week of May, 1961, the Daily News carried articles about the first rumblings of another Mississippi civil rights milestone, the application of James Meredith to enter the all-white University of Mississippi. Meredith, after months of wrangling with Ole Miss officials, sued for admission to the university on May 31, 1961.(16)

By September 1962, response to Meredith's application for admission was reaching a fever pitch after more than a year of legal maneuvering, appeals, and hearings. Justice Hugo Black had ordered Meredith's admission, and Governor Barnett had announced a statewide television speech to address the crisis. The front page of the Daily News announced that a cross had been burned outside the veterans' apartments where Meredith might soon be living. The accompanying picture of the blazing cross, the first of several to be burned at Oxford in coming weeks, carried the caption, "Greeting for Negro."(17)

The Daily News' coverage of the Meredith crisis lacked the humorous edge of its coverage of the freedom rides. Meredith posed much more of a threat than the bus-riding students, who had challenged a form of segregation that did not touch most Mississippians' daily lives--interstate bus transportation--and who could be removed from public view swiftly with effective police work. Meredith's attack on segregation at the university, on the other hand, represented a more direct, substantive threat to Mississippi's way of life, and its preservation was threatened by the federal government's persistence on his behalf. The higher stakes stiffened the Daily News' resistance.

The newspaper outlined the stakes in a front-page editorial after the cross-burning. Headlined "Blueprint for Destruction," the editorial noted that violence was increasing in New York City, a clear result of the "race mixing" so prominent there. Mississippians faced a choice between following New York's example of desegregation, which "leads straight to decay and corruption," or refusing to follow the path to oblivion. The editorial did not mention the Meredith crisis, but said it was important for Mississippians to consider such crucial choices "at this point in Mississippi history."(18)

The editorial foreshadowed the governor's themes that night in his television address. Saying no Caucasian race had yet survived social integration, he declared, "We will not drink from the cup of genocide." He repeated his pledge that no school would be integrated in Mississippi while he was governor.(19)

The next morning's Daily News provided blanket coverage of the governor's address as well as warm support for him. "Mississippi Mix? Ross Says `Never'!", headlined the primary article, accompanied by the full text of the governor's remarks and an editorial, titled "We Support Gov. Barnett." The editorial said the governor's position is "one that is solidly endorsed by all right-thinking Mississippians." To underscore the point, a photograph showed a harried secretary sorting through the piles of supportive telegrams Barnett had received.(20)

In the days after the speech, the Daily News began to circle the wagons against expected criticism of Barnett's stand. "Let the Crackpots Scream," a Daily News editorial advised, saying the state would never please the "wild-eyed social bandits who have used this venom to turn many of the nation's cities into sidewalks of jungle terror." An accompanying, unsigned column on the editorial page defended the doctrine of interposition, which Barnett had used to justify ignoring federal orders.(21)

News articles the following Sunday in the Daily News, Clarion-Ledger combined Sunday edition also served to back up the governor. A front-page article labeled "bulletin" reported rumors that Ku Klux Klansmen were gathering in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, in preparation to descend upon Oxford or Jackson. Another front-page article, lacking any named sources, exhorted state officials to "stand firm" with Barnett or face retribution by the legislature. Even the newspapers' society columnist got into the act; Florence Sillers Ogden "Dis An' Dat" lavished praise on Barnett.(22)

In the week that followed, the Daily News excoriated out-of-state media for criticizing Barnett, praised Southern newspapers who supported him, urged citizens to be careful in dealing with reporters visiting the state, lauded Barnett in a lengthy profile, and continued to warn that desegregation would ruin Mississippi as it ruined the North. Showing a rare crack in his humorless stance toward the Meredith issue, Ward suggested the government should sidestep the entire issue and declare every person in the state a Negro, "and the Magnolia State will become the happiest, biggest Harlem the world has ever known."(23)

The Jackson papers' close relationship with Barnett was apparent from their favorable coverage of the governor and their news articles echoing the governor's themes. Moreover, the death notice of longtime Clarion-Ledger city editor Gene Wirth in the midst of the Ole Miss crisis called Wirth a "confidant and close adviser" of the governor who "during the past days of crisis had spent many long and late hours conferring with the chief executive and other state officials." Barnett was an honorary pallbearer at Wirth's funeral.(24)

The week prior to Meredith's admission, the Daily News followed closely the impending "invasion" of federal forces. The newspaper's articles and editorials argued paradoxically that federal troops or marshals were not needed in peaceful Mississippi but that Mississippians stood prepared to fight to the death to fight integration. The newspaper's resolve against violence had faded. As the Daily News reported Lieutenant Governor Paul B. Johnson's turning away Meredith on the Ole Miss campus, a front-page article warned that Mississippians would win the integration battle "regardless of the cost in human life." An accompanying article, datelined Birmingham, Alabama, noted that thousands of members of the States Rights Party were willing to take up arms in Barnett's behalf. Mississippi's U.S. senators said in an article on the same page that the use of troops in Mississippi would be illegal.(25)

The next day, Ward's front-page column said the public should be congratulated for remaining calm, as no incident had been reported. "There is no cause whatsoever for Federal troops to sent [sic] into Mississippi. With everyone acting peacefully, why would troops be sent unless it would be a military grab of power?" On the same page, an article described a gathering of 500 police officers in Oxford, "watchfully alert against a possible invasion of 50 to 100 U.S. marshals especially trained as riot-busters."(26)

Two days before Meredith's arrival at Ole Miss on Sunday, September 30, 1962, the Daily News provided its readers a musical anthem of the state's determination. Words and music to the "The Never, No Never Song" ran in place of the usual cartoon on the editorial page. An editorial said the song expertly put the state's attitude to music and suggested that readers clip it for a possible mass rendition at the Ole Miss-University of Kentucky football game the following day. The song, an ode to segregation, declared that, at Ole Miss, "Never, never, never, shall our emblem go from Colonel Reb to Ole Black Joe."(27)

The day after the riot, the Daily News, in its news coverage and its opinion columns, placed the blame for the violence squarely on the shoulders of the federal government and the marshals. The headlines expressed the newspaper's position completely: "Negro Troops Set Off Oxford Battle," "Marshals Fire Gas Without Warning," "Ross Blames `Trigger-Happy' U.S. Officers." The newspaper's account was consistent with the support for Barnett and vilification of federal authorities that marked the coverage leading up to the violence.(28)

Oddly, the story of Harry Murphy, a light-skinned black from New York who claimed to have "passed" at Ole Miss during his days as a Navy student at Ole Miss in the mid-1940s, received little notice in the Daily News. Murphy's attendance at Ole Miss beat Meredith by almost 20 years to the honor of desegregating the school, but the newspaper buried Murphy's short account on page 8 and left the writing to the wire services.(29)

If the Daily News' coverage of civil rights news was blatantly segregationist, its coverage of blacks in other arenas showed a similar segregationist bent that was, at least, more subtle. Mostly, the Daily News just ignored the black community. Blacks were seldom seen or heard in the news columns, unless they committed a crime.

The Daily News, which consistently ran page-one articles about honors given local white schoolchildren at area junior and senior high schools, did not honor black schoolchildren with similar coverage in these spreads.(30) Society pages pictured pages upon pages of white brides, but no blacks.(31)

Sometimes blacks made it into the newspaper, perhaps if they died violently or if public money was being appropriated for black schools.(32) It helped, too, if a black had some connection with the newspaper. The manager of the Clarion-Ledger Colored Circulation Department, a 24-year-veteran of the newspaper, was honored with a three-paragraph article, albeit in the classified section, on the occasion of his departure to California for another job.(33)

But participation in any violent act was a surer way for a black to win entry into the Daily News pages. Blacks who were accused of committing violent crimes, not matter how far away from Mississippi, could wind up on the front page. The newspaper, for example, gave page-one play to two New Jersey youths accused of killing a local socialite and to the murder of a New York subway passenger by a black man.(34)

In 1963, the assassination of Medgar Evers, NAACP field secretary, gave the Daily News a rare chance for the newspaper to show empathy, even in a restrained way, to a black man. In the first story describing the shooting of Evers outside his home the night of June 11, Ward's column called the killing a "dastardly act of inhuman behavior," virtually identical language to that used by Barnett in describing the murder. But the newspaper described the killing more in terms of its damage to Jackson's reputation for peaceful race relations than as a human tragedy. An editorial blamed the bloodshed on professional agitators, usually a code word for civil rights workers, and lamented the damage to Jackson's image. An accompanying cartoon depicted a book representing "Jackson's Record of Racial Harmony" as blemished by Evers' assassination.(35)

Oddly, the Clarion-Ledger emphasized the out-of-state ties of murder suspect Byron de la Beckwith when he was arrested. "Californian is Charged With Murder of Evers," read the newspaper's front-page headline, although Beckwith, who was born in California, had lived in Mississippi since he was a child.(36)

The year 1964 had a wealth of civil rights news for the Daily News to cover, all of it controversial. The new civil rights bill was wending its way through Congress, much to Southerners' chagrin. Another black student, Cleveland Donald, Jr., was applying to the University of Mississippi. Most controversially, hundreds of Northern college students were in Mississippi under a program organized by the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee. The students, many from the North, planned to register black voters and to teach blacks about their public responsibilities in "freedom schools."(37)

The Daily News would sometimes editorialize against a combination of the three. The civil rights bill was considered repressive and an unnecessary substitute for black initiative. One editorial said that blacks were not the victims of discrimination in Jackson and needed not laws but a greater desire for self-improvement. The editorial noted in closing that blacks and whites would do well in ignore the "agitating human locusts" who might invade the state.(38)

The Daily News often characterized the incoming students as invaders. At first, the newspaper closely followed the story when civil rights workers Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman, and James Cheney were reported missing. But coverage quickly slacked off until bodies of the three were found almost two months later on August 4. Then and afterward, the newspaper closely followed the search for their killers but was strangely silent on its editorial page about the murders. The newspaper found space to comment on the wonders of the nuclear age, sleeping habits, dairy herds, and Alaskan resources, but said nothing about what was one of the largest national news stories of the year.(39)

Overall, the Daily News coverage of the civil rights movement mirrored the orthodoxy of the closed society. Blacks, so rejected by society, were rejected and maligned by the newspaper. Civil rights workers, so threatening to Mississippi, were scorned. The newspaper echoed the Citizens' Council and the politicians, excoriating outsiders and agitators. The exact effect of this coverage is unknown; however, the Daily News and its ilk certainly sustained the closed society and, by extension, the violence that enforced it. The Daily News did not openly invite disorder, although it came close to it in the Ole Miss crisis. But its news coverage and enthusiastic support of political leadership that compared integration to genocide constituted a more implicit invitation. By reflecting the closed society with such vehemence, the Daily News contributed to its maintenance in long-suffering, racially backward Mississippi in the early 1960s.

By contrast, Smith, East, Harkey, Carter, and Emmerich represented a minority of dissent against the orthodoxy of white supremacy in the closed society. So firm was the stand of the state's leadership against desegregation that any dissent represented progress in Mississippi. By calling the racist Mississippi society for what it was, they weakened the closed society, depending as it did upon unanimity and conformity for its sustenance. Personally, these journalists suffered insults, and even threats of physical violence, from their neighbors. Speaking out for justice was its own reward, so rigid was the racial orthodoxy of conformist Mississippi in the 1960s.

Hazel Brannon Smith

Hazel Brannon Smith's newspaper career began at 16 when young Hazel, finished with high school in her hometown of Gadsden, Alabama, but too young for college, signed on with the local weekly. At the Etowah Observer, she began writing personal items but soon was reporting front-page news and selling advertising. Her experience led her to major in journalism at the University of Alabama, where she eventually became editor of the college newspaper.

In 1935, with B.A. in hand, Smith began looking for a newspaper to buy. She settled on the struggling Durant News in Holmes County in central Mississippi. Emphasizing local news coverage, Smith managed to double the newspaper's circulation and to pay off the $3,000 debt on her newspaper in just four years. By 1943, she was prosperous enough to buy the Advertiser in nearby Lexington, county seat of Holmes County. In the mid-1950s, she completed her string of newspapers by buying the Banner County Outlook in Flora and the Northside Reporter in Jackson.(40)

Smith's newspapers were marked by her outspokenness in her editorials and in a regular column, "Through Hazel Eyes." In 1946, she was found in contempt of court after she interviewed the widow of a black who had been whipped to death.(41) In 1948, she accused a local jury of leniency for acquitting a defendant of gambling and bootlegging charges. Her editorials on the subject, part of a long campaign against racketeering, won her the top award from the National Federation for Press Women.

In 1954, Smith editorialized against the local sheriff after he shot a fleeing black in the thigh. The sheriff sued for libel and won a $10,000 libel judgment. The Mississippi Supreme Court overturned the judgment the next year, ruling that Smith's editorials had simply related the facts of the case.(42) This editorial marked the beginning of organized opposition to Smith, who later blamed the white Citizens' Council as "would-be political dictators and racial fanatics who want to control the people of Holmes County and tell them what to think, say, and do."(43) The Council supported the founding of a rival weekly in Lexington, the Herald, in 1958, and this combined with a Council-led advertising boycott cut into her advertising revenue. Moreover, her husband lost his job as administrator of the local hospital following pressure from the Council.(44)

As 1960 began, Smith continued to defend blacks against unfair treatment, but she was no integrationist. That July, after she had won an award from the University of Southern Mississippi for her courage, Smith excoriated the Herald for saying she had won the award for supporting integration. She called the charge a smear.(45) Smith believed that blacks and whites preferred to live separately but that desegregation did not have to bring turmoil, as both races wanted to live in peace.(46) In the mid-1950s, she often said she believed equalization of school funding was the best way to preserve segregation and avoid litigation.(47)

Two months after the cross was burned on her lawn, Smith was in the news again. This time, the Clarion-Ledger ran an article accusing Smith of meeting with black leaders. Two representatives of the state Sovereignty Commission, the Mississippi state agency organized to fight integration, had signed an affidavit saying they had seen Smith's car outside the office of the Free-Press, Jackson's black newspaper. The two claimed that Smith had met with several blacks, including Medgar Evers, secretary of the state NAACP. The affidavit was made public when state Senator T.M. Williams of Lexington made a speech about it on the Senate floor. Smith, he charged, was a shrewd and scheming woman who was trying to dictate the policies of Holmes County. In her defense, Smith said she was simply dropping off copies of the Free-Press in Jackson under her contract to print the paper.(48)

There was no love lost between Smith and the Commission, which used state funds to finance the Citizens' Council, one of her staunchest enemies. Smith had first criticized the Commission for approving up to $5,000 a month for the Council.(49) By March 1961, she was calling for the abolishment of the Commission, citing the agency's part in a campaign to oust the student newspaper editor at the University of Mississippi because of his alleged left-wing ties. She said that Mississippians' freedom was being threatened by the agency's tactics, which represented "our own home grown variety of fascism, Mississippi-born and nurtured."(50)

When the freedom riders rode into Jackson in the summer of 1961 and were quickly arrested, Smith was unsympathetic. In an editorial, she praised Jackson Mayor Allen Thompson for a fine job of public relations. She said that while she preferred that the freedom riders did not come South, she urged that they be treated equitably since their right to travel was protected by federal law.(51) But Smith was more sympathetic the next year to James Meredith. Although she was unenthusiastic about desegregating the university, she believed federal law had to be enforced. She blamed Governor Barnett for the bloodshed at Ole Miss because he had defied federal court orders to admit the young veteran. "No infant now living will ever see the day when the stain is completely removed from the name of our once proud state," Smith wrote.(52)

In May 1963, Smith criticized the local sheriff after he arrested a black man whose home was firebombed. Smith interviewed the man, Hartman Turnbow, who had recently attempted to register to vote, and concluded that it was ludicrous for Turnbow to be accused of firebombing his own home. Smith said his arrest was a "numbing shock" to the community.(53)

After the unprovoked killing of a black man in downtown Lexington the next month, Smith interviewed dozens of blacks to determine the facts, then published an account critical of the police. Two policemen sued her for libel, and even Smith's friends were critical that the crime was publicized. "Hazel, what are you trying to do, start a riot?" one friend demanded. "Hell, no," Smith replied. "I'm not trying to start a riot. I'm trying to stop one." The libel suit was later dropped.(54)

The week after President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, Smith placed the blame entirely upon the South. She said in an editorial that during the civil rights struggle the South had abdicated its leadership to bigots and extremists who had created the atmosphere in which Kennedy was slain. "First Lincoln, Now Kennedy. The South Kills Another President," read the editorial's headline.(55)

The following summer, Smith appeared on a biracial panel with civil rights leaders in Washington, D.C., to discuss the disappearance of the three civil rights workers in Neshoba County. "You don't have to have a sheet to belong to the Klan," she said. "It's as much as state of mind as anything else." Shortly thereafter, her editorial offices were firebombed.(56)

Smith's criticism of the closed society brought her fame but not fortune. She was $100,000 in debt by 1965, despite the financial contributions from a committee assembled by Carter four years earlier. Her financial worries worsened through the 1970s, and in 1986, Smith, deeply in debt and impaired by Alzheimer's disease, lost her newspapers. Smith had taken Mississippi to task and suffered financially and personally, if not physically. "I'm sure that if she had been a man," fellow Mississippi journalist Wilson Minor said of Smith, "they would have lynched her." Smith now lives in a nursing home in Alabama.(57)

J. Oliver Emmerich

Born in 1896 in New Orleans, J. Oliver Emmerich moved to McComb, Mississippi, in the southwestern part of the state near the Louisiana border, at the age of four. He grew up steeped in what he called the "cotton-patch" mentality of the South. This philosophy, as Emmerich described it, resulted in a demand for conformity, a hostility to change, the acceptance of deep-seated racial prejudices, and a rationalization of Southern traditions. Emmerich studied agriculture at Mississippi A & M College (now Mississippi State University), was graduated in 1918, and worked as a county farm agent for several years after college. In 1923 he bought the McComb Enterprise. Two decades later he bought the rival McComb Journal and merged the two newspapers to form the McComb Enterprise-Journal.(58)

Emmerich was a firm believer in states' rights in the 1940s and 1950s and was among the Mississippi delegates to walk out of the Democratic Convention in 1948 to protest Harry Truman's civil rights policies and his renomination. But Emmerich opposed lynching and supported voting and fair employment for blacks, and he later came to regret his states'-rights stand. "What many persons thought to be constitutional states' rights actually were not constitutional rights at all," Emmerich wrote. Moreover, the states'-righters presupposed that each man could interpret the Constitution for himself, which the editor came to see as an impracticality in a constitutional system.(59)

As editor, Emmerich was bothered that blacks seemed to appear in most Southern newspapers only when they had committed a crime. Rarely were blacks who had distinguished themselves in some way featured in the newspaper. What black news there was appeared under a condescending caption such as, "With Our Colored Friends." Blacks were always designated as blacks in news copy. Emmerich decided to expand very gradually the coverage of black news and to begin to use courtesy titles in referring to blacks. The latter change horrified some whites. "Our niggers are already uppity enough," one elderly man complained to the editor. "Are you trying to make them more uppity?" The failure to use courtesy titles, Emmerich replied, denied blacks their dignity.(60)

When freedom riders came to McComb in 1961, they were met with violence and harassment arrests. The Enterprise-Journal discouraged violence and pleaded for law and order. As a result of local residents' resentment of the riders and the resulting publicity, five out-of-state newspapermen were beaten up just outside the newspaper office. Emmerich himself was punched in the face by a stranger just weeks after having a serious heart attack. His assailant was acquitted.(61)

During the Ole Miss crisis, Emmerich accused Governor Barnett of ignoring the demands of constitutional government and damaging the image of Mississippi. The editor said that if Barnett succeeded in keeping James Meredith out of Ole Miss, it would be the first time in history that a Supreme Court decision had been overturned by a governor. This editorial caused an organized effort for readers to cancel subscriptions and businesses to cancel advertising. The Enterprise-Journal's circulation dipped but returned to normal within six months.(62)

In 1964, the stage was set for a long, hot summer as civil rights workers and college students descended on Mississippi to run freedom schools and register black voters. Already, the activities of SNCC leader Robert Moses to increase black voter registration in and around McComb had resulted in violence. Emmerich warned fellow Mississippians in editorials in May 1964 that they faced a choice in dealing with the "invasion" of college students responsibly or foolishly. "Our conclusion is that we should all try to relax."(63)

The community did not respond responsibly. More than a dozen churches and black residences were bombed in McComb in 1964, prompting the Washington Post at one point to call the area the "bombing belt." Three black taverns were burned. Albert Heffner of McComb, father of Miss Mississippi 1964, was harassed and his family was forced to leave town after he invited civil rights workers into his home.(64) A cross was burned in front of Emmerich's office and a Molotov cocktail was thrown through the window of his managing editor's home. Another cross was burned on the front lawn of Emmerich's home on the night the editor's mother had died, though the Ku Klux Klan apologized when it learned of the coincidence.(65)

The county sheriff approached Emmerich to say that he might make some headway in solving the bombings if he had reward money to offer informants. Emmerich ran an editorial publicizing the sheriff's request and met with a small committee of businessmen to drum up support. More than $5,000 was raised, and the bombers were ultimately arrested. The community effort to raise the money led shortly to a full-page "statement of principles" by community leaders, published in Emmerich's paper, urging a return to law and order, an end to harassment arrests, compliance with the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and greater communication between the races.(66)

The statement of principles, signed by 650 McComb citizens, elicited an immediate and positive reaction across the nation. The national television networks, the New York Times, and newspapers around the country took note. Drew Pearson's syndicated column said the action was "largely inspired by courageous crusading of one lone newspaper editor," Emmerich. A biracial committee was formed, and directly afterward groups of local civil rights activists tested the new Civil Rights law without incident. McComb's worst days were over.(67)

Sigma Delta Chi, the Society of Professional Journalists, honored Emmerich for his efforts. Veteran Jackson journalist Wilson Minor, who covered Mississippi for the New Orleans Times-Picayune, said Emmerich, during the worst of the turmoil, had worn a bullet-proof vest and kept his house well-lit at night, apparently to discourage firebombers. He credited Emmerich's efforts as part of a larger American story of the triumph of justice and citizenship in McComb.(68)

Ira B. Harkey Jr.

Ira B. Harkey Jr. was a veteran of the U.S. Navy and New Orleans Times-Picayune newsroom when he arrived in Pascagoula, Mississippi, in 1949 to take possession of the Pascagoula Chronicle-Star, a weekly newspaper he and a partner had just purchased. Almost from the beginning, Harkey raised hackles in Pascagoula, a small town on the Mississippi Gulf Coast between New Orleans and Mobile, Alabama. His principles were what did it.(69)

Harkey believed that his job as editor of the Chronicle-Star was to print the news and to do so responsibly. The public good mattered above all else. So when Pascagoula Mayor Frank Canty was jailed on a drunkenness charge in 1950, Harkey wrote about the arrest and put it on page one, although readers complained. He turned down advertising he deemed misleading and refused to puff advertisers in the news columns. His principles, reinforced by a measure of financial independence, distanced him, he believed, from most Mississippi journalists, whom he dismissed as irresponsible, morally impotent, and intellectually bankrupt. The newspaper succeeded, doubling in circulation to about 7,000 in 1947, enough to allow a switch to a semi-weekly. The paper became a daily in 1962 and was renamed the Pascagoula Chronicle.(70)

Along the way, Harkey challenged some of the prevailing newspaper practices regarding race, because he also believed that blacks were human beings and should be treated as such. The Chronicle began covering more news of the black community and dropped the practice of separating black news from white news. Harkey gradually began to give the courtesy title "Mrs." to some prominent black women, and, without telling even his staff, he dropped the Negro tag in virtually all news articles. The policy went unnoticed by the public until a local father was charged with beating his four-year-old stepson in 1950, and Harkey's stories about the crime were picked up by the wires. Sympathetic letters poured into the mother and the local police until an Associated Press photographer obtained a picture of the boy, who was black. The sympathy halted immediately, and some readers were chagrined. "If you have to write about niggers," one reader told him, "call 'em niggers right up at top so I don't waste my time reading about 'em." Harkey unsuccessfully urged his colleagues in the Mississippi press to adopt the practice.(71)

When the Supreme Court outlawed school desegregation, Harkey supported the decision and believed he was the only Mississippi editor to do so, suggesting gradually integrating the schools over 20 years. A visitor from the Ku Klux Klan expressed his discontent with Harkey, and that fall a cross was burned in front of a black church, the black schools, and Harkey's home. "Ah, autumn!" Harkey wrote in his newspaper column the following week. "Falling leaves ... the hint of a north breeze stirring in the night ... the smell of burning crosses in the air."(72)

Harkey's most controversial stand concerned the James Meredith case in 1962. Harkey accused Governor Barnett of obstructing justice and driving Mississippi to chaos. He said it was schizophrenic for Mississippians to announce that they would not follow federal law and at the same time to protest the federal government's plans to uphold it. "In a madhouse's din, Mississippi waits. God help Mississippi," Harkey wrote. After the riot, an anonymous caller told Harkey his life was in danger, and a rifle shot was fired through the front of the Chronicle office.(73)

An anti-integration group began closed meetings at the county Courthouse, and word got to Harkey that his life was in danger. Circulation dropped, advertising dipped, and a half-dozen Chronicle newsboys quit their jobs. Harkey ran a front-page editorial publicizing the group and saying the stakes were higher than just one editor's well-being. "But long think on this: what happens to him can happen to you," Harkey told his readers, echoing Hazel Brannon's Smith words two years previously. "You may be next." Another shotgun blast, this time through Harkey's office window, prompted publicity and an investigation into the threats against the editor and his newspaper. The threats ended, though Harkey continued to carry a handgun.(74)

In 1963, the Columbia Journalism Review lauded Harkey for his courage, saying the editor's swift call for law and order made many of his brethren in the Mississippi press appear equivocating. His editorials also won him the 1963 Pulitzer Prize, an honor that won him few friends in Mississippi. Hazel Brannon Smith praised him in the Lexington Enterprise, as did Hodding Carter's Delta Democrat-Times, but most of the Mississippi press either criticized him for being anti-Mississippi or ignored him. Worse for Harkey, many of the people in Pascagoula had stopped speaking to him. "I was a pariah," Harkey said. He sold the Chronicle in June 1963 and left Mississippi.(75)

In his autobiography, Harkey was bitter about his Mississippi experience, especially about the press. He denounced most Mississippi, and indeed most Southern, newspapers, as being anti-black, cheering segregation at every turn, and coloring their news columns with racist propaganda. "Civil rights workers in those newspapers are always called `agitators.' Civil rights is turned into `civil wrongs,' or `so-called civil rights.' Anti-Negro propaganda and editorializing appear in their news columns without quotation or any other distinguishing marks."(76)

Even Harkey's own newspaper slipped back into racism after Harkey left it. As the editor walked out of the Chronicle office for the last time, a young reporter wrung his hands and was overheard to say, "Boy, I can't wait to start writing nigger again!"(77)

P.D. East

P.D. East's greatest fame was in the 1950s, not the 1960s, but he continued to work in the latter decade, and he earned an uncommon amount of attention for tilting at the windmills of the closed society.

The son of working-class parents in the sawmill towns of southern Mississippi, East had a lengthy tenure as a passenger representative with the Southern Railroad, but he hated the work. After doing some freelance writing, he established the Petal Paper in 1953 with one aim: to make money. He vowed not to let controversial editorials spoil that goal; accordingly, his avowed editorial policy was to consistently support motherhood and to oppose sin.(78)

When the Brown decision stirred up Mississippi, East tried to straddle the fence. He published editorials from other newspapers, one on each side of the issue, and said in an accompanying editorial note he would let the readers decide for themselves. Readers were dissatisfied with equivocation on such an important issue, and subscription renewals and advertising began to fall off.(79) By 1956, East had begun to question segregation and ran a lengthy tongue-in-cheek column questioning whether heaven was segregated. He presently ran another column that defended the dignity of blacks and criticized Mississippi's treatment of the black man.(80)

East, already suffering financially, lost more money on his papers as subscriptions went unrenewed. But he continued to speak out, partly because he was so concerned at the establishment of a Citizens' Council in Forrest County in early 1956.(81) East believed the Council would destroy local race relations, so he ran what became known as the "jackass ad." The ad showed a braying donkey and invited people to join the Citizens' Council so they, too, could be superior and hate blacks. Readers threatened and insulted East as a result.(82)

In 1956, East, the novelist William Faulkner and Ole Miss history professor James Silver anonymously published one issue of The Southern Reposure, a satirical newspaper that poked fun of racial mores in Mississippi by criticizing the purported abuses of the Scotch-Irish against the established Mississippi Anglo-Saxon population. For example, one article quoted the trial of one 16-year-old Alexander Graham Tell, arrested and threatened with lynching in Addit, Mississippi, for calling a white woman a "wee bonnie lassie."(83)

East often resorted to satire, such as his publication of a fake advertisement in 1957 offering prime lumber available for making crosses. As East's local circulation dwindled to almost nothing, he sold subscriptions out-of-state through contacts and trips made as his fame spread. He also accepted donations.(84)

As the 1960s began, East railed against the Citizens' Councils, supported the student sit-in movement, and favored the 1960 Civil Rights Act.(85) He published his autobiography but commented little on national and even Mississippi civil rights developments through much of 1961, after which he suspended the Petal Paper for six months due to illness and marital problems.(86) He won his last major journalism award, the Florina Lasker Civil Rights Award, from the New York Civil Liberties Union, in 1962. He commented only briefly on the Ole Miss crisis, expressing regret months later over those who died in the riot and satirically demanding that the U.S. Justice Department replace the grass trampled by the U.S. marshals.(87)

In 1963, East mourned the death of two of his friends, Evers and Bill Moore, who was murdered on a cross-country march to Mississippi to ask the governor for racial justice. East believed that official Mississippi's expressions of sympathy at Evers' death were genuine but that Mississippi state officials pro-segregation actions had implicitly sanctioned brutal opposition.(88) Tiring of the oppressive atmosphere in Mississippi, East moved to Fairhope, Alabama, in December 1963. He continued to publish the Petal Paper from his new home in Alabama, commenting sporadically on race and civil rights issues, until his death in 1971.(89)

Hodding Carter Jr.

Hodding Carter Jr. is perhaps the best known of any Mississippi journalist of the past. Though the vast majority of his career took place before 1960, he was important to Mississippi in this period because he was such a prominent critic of the closed society and because of his close association with other Mississippi journalists.(90)

Carter had held racist views as a youth but became much more egalitarian in adulthood. After earning degrees at Bowdoin College and Columbia University, he worked for the wire services and the New Orleans States-Item before he and his wife Betty founded a newspaper in 1931 in his hometown of Hammond, Louisiana. Carter made a name for himself by taking on the Huey Long machine and was subsequently wooed to Greenville, Mississippi, by a group of businessmen who wanted to start a new newspaper. Carter quickly settled into aristocratic Greenville, a Mississippi River town with a reputation for civil race relations. After two years in business, Carter and his partners bought the competition and merged the two papers to form the Delta Democrat-Times.

In 1939 Carter was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard, and the next year he worked briefly as press editor for the PM newspaper in New York. He began to write articles for national magazines as well as books, and after his return to Greenville he won the Pulitzer Prize for a series of editorials condemning racial bigotry.

After the Brown decision was issued in 1954, Carter urged calm. "Let's keep our shirts on," he advised readers. He said the Brown decision was fair because it gave every American child a right to an equal education. But he said the decision should be implemented over a decade or more to give Southerners time to adjust. To desegregate immediately, particularly in rural areas with high concentrations of blacks, would be impractical.(91)

After Carter wrote an article for Look magazine in 1955 describing the South's resistance to desegregation, the Mississippi House of Representatives passed a resolution -- by a vote of eighty-nine to nineteen -- calling him a liar. In a front-page editorial, Carter declared that he had resolved by a vote of one to nothing that the Mississippi House contained eighty-nine liars. "Those eighty-nine character mobbers can go to hell, collectively or singly, and wait till I back down," Carter said.(92)

In May 1960, Carter turned over the editorship of the Delta Democrat-Times to his son Hodding Carter III and bought a house in Maine. He and Betty lived there several months a year but closely followed events in Mississippi year-round. Invited to speak in 1961 at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, Carter was asked his reaction to the recent attack on his friend Oliver Emmerich. "If the local police protection isn't enough, they should call out the National Guard, and if the Guard can't do it, send in the Marines," Carter replied.(93)

The Daily News ran an Associated Press article on Carter's comments under the headline, "Hodding Carter Urges Force Be Used to Integrate State." In response, Carter received a deluge of hate mail. He was burned in effigy in the town of Glen Allan, 35 miles south of Greenville.(94) In an editorial, Carter said he was disappointed that "Mississippi's largest and worst newspaper combined used a completely dishonest headline over the Associated Press story from Providence." He explained that he did not want federal intervention; he was simply protesting the beating of Emmerich, a lifelong friend, and two correspondents from Time and Life. He added that being burned in effigy represented real progress in Mississippi, considering that the state once burned live people.(95)

Carter, mindful of his position in the community, drafted a statement with the editor of the Providence Journal and Evening Bulletin explaining his remarks. He sent the statement to several thousand people.(96)

In the New York Times Magazine in February 1962, Carter predicted that meaningful desegregation would be a long time in coming to Mississippi. He predicted that Mississippi would be the final state to desegregate its schools and that "token desegregation would be accepted eventually in the larger communities."(97)

After Hodding Carter III urged Mississippians to speak out in favor of James Meredith in 1962, a cross was burned at the Carter home in Greenville. The senior Carter, living temporarily in New Orleans while he taught at Tulane University, returned to Greenville to help protect his home.(98)

After the slaying of Evers in 1963, Carter described Mississippi as a state possessed by hate and fear. In "Mississippi Now -- Hate and Fear," written for the New York Times Magazine, Carter said Mississippians demonstrated a "fantastic belief in an eventual and inevitable showdown."(99)

In 1964, Carter praised the passage of the Civil Rights Act but worried that it would not improve relations between the races.(100) He was not enthusiastic about the flood of college students visiting Mississippi that summer to register black voters. However, later he defended ministers and other volunteers who lived in the homes of blacks, saying this would show Southern blacks that there were whites who believed in black rights.(101)

The journalist Nicholas von Hoffman, after visiting Greenville in summer 1964, wrote that Greenville residents were different from other Mississippians and took pride in being so. For this, Hoffman credited Carter and the legacy of the poet William Alexander Percy.(102) William Burnley, police chief of Greenville during the early 1960s and later mayor, also credited Carter for calm in Greenville. "A lot of the press, like the Jackson newspapers, were stoking the fires. They wanted it to break loose. But the Carters were very effective in helping maintain peace and harmony."(103)

Harry Marsh, who worked for Carter in the late 1950s, recalled that Feliciana Farm, the Carter's home in Greenville, served as a rest stop for anyone looking into Mississippi's racial problems. "The newspaper office and Carter's home were seemingly mandatory way stations for foreign and national officials, journalists, and scholars passing through Mississippi on business related to desegregation," Marsh recalled. (104)

More significantly, Carter was something of a hero to the forces of sanity in Mississippi, those who questioned the closed society. Carter, and his colleagues in the Mississippi press who also questioned the state's dominant racial mores, demonstrated that there was indeed another side to the racial question. They pointed out the lunacy of the closed society, foreshadowing the crumbling of Mississippi's racial orthodoxy. They gave some people hope.

"The whole state was so racist that I was totally surrounded by people who didn't believe what I believed," recalled John Herbers, who worked for the Jackson bureau of the United Press and later for the New York Times. "They were backed up by tradition, religion, and the law. I'd get up every morning and ask myself, `Is there something wrong with me?' I'd think I was crazy, and I'd see people like Hodding and know the real world was out there ... If it hadn't been for him I would have left. He gave us hope."(105)


1. 1.Lexington Advertiser, November 10, 1960; Jackson Clarion-Ledger, November 12, 1960.

2. 2.For general history of the Jim Crow laws and the civil rights movement, see C. Vann Woodward, The Strange Career of Jim Crow, 2d ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1966); and David J. Garrow, Bearing the Cross: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, 1955-1968 (New York: Morrow, 1986). Biographies and autobiographies of individual Southern journalists abound, including accounts of some Mississippi journalists. Two that are particularly useful are Ann Waldron, Hodding Carter: The Reconstruction of a Racist (Chapel Hill, N.C.: Algonquin Books, 1993); and Gary Huey, Rebel With A Cause: P.D. East, Southern Liberalism and the Civil Rights Movement (Wilmington, Del.: Scholarly Resources, 1985). Rarer is a book that takes a broader view of the media and civil rights; two exceptions are Richard Lentz, Symbols, the News Magazines, and Martin Luther King (Baton Route, La.: Louisiana State University Press, 1990), and John T. Kneebone, Southern Liberal Journalists and the Issue of Race (Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, 1985).

3. 3. Silver, James W., Mississippi: The Closed Society (New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1963).

4. 4.Ibid, p. 30; "A Regional Report: Newspapers of the South," Columbia Journalism Review, Summer 1967, 26-35.

5. 5.For history of the Citizens' Council, see Neil McMillen, The Citizens' Council: Organized Resistance to the Second Reconstruction, 1954-64 (Urbana, Ill.: University of Illinois Press, 1971).

6. 6.Jackson Daily News, May 23, 1961.

7. 7.Daily News, May 24, 1961; May 25, 1961.

8. 8.Daily News, May 16, 1961; May 18, 1961; May 20, 1961.

9. 9.Daily News, May 21, 1961.

10. 10.Ibid.

11. 11.Daily News, May 22, 1961.

12. 12.Daily News, May 23, 1961.

13. 13.Daily News, May 24, 1961.

14. 14.Daily News, May 25, 1961.

15. 15.Daily News, May 26, 1961.

16. 16.Daily News, May 31, 1961.

17. 17.Daily News, September 12, 1962.

18. 18.Daily News, September 13, 1962.

19. 19."A Statewide Address on Television and Radio to the People of Mississippi, by Governor Ross R. Barnett," September 13, 1961, Kenneth Toler Papers, Mitchell Memorial Library, Mississippi State University.

20. 20.Daily News, September 14, 1962.

21. 21.Daily News, September 15, 1962.

22. 22.Daily News, Clarion-Ledger combined Sunday edition, September 16, 1962.

23. 23.Daily News, September 19, 1962; September 21, 1962; September 24, 1962.

24. 24.Daily News, September 20, 1962.

25. 25.Daily News, September 26, 1962.

26. 26.Daily News, September 27, 1962.

27. 27.Daily News, September 28, 1962.

28. 28.Daily News, October 1, 1962; October 2, 1962.

29. 29.Daily News, September 25, 1962.

30. 30.Daily News, May 19, 1961; May 26, 1961; June 5, 1964.

31. 31.Daily News, Clarion-Ledger combined Sunday edition, September 2, 1962. This edition is typical of a society section of the Daily News during this period.

32. 32.Daily News, May 28, 1962.

33. 33.Daily News, September 2, 1962.

34. 34.Daily News, May 26, 1961; September 26, 1962.

35. 35.Daily News, June 12, 1963; June 13, 1963.

36. 36.Clarion-Ledger, June 24, 1963.

37. 37.Daily News, June 10, 1964. For background on Freedom Summer, see Clayborne Carson, In Struggle: SNCC and the Black Awakening in the 1960s (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1981).

38. 38.Daily News, June 3, 1964; June 25, 1964.

39. 39.Daily News, August 5, 1964; August 6, 1964; August 7, 1964; August 8, 1964; August 12, 1964.

40. 40.Current Biography, 1973. Biographical materials, Hazel Brannon Smith papers, Mitchell Memorial Library, Mississippi State University. Smith's stands during the civil rights struggle are covered thoroughly by Mark Newman in "Hazel Brannon Smith and Holmes County, Mississippi, 1936-1964: The Making of a Pulitzer Prize Winner," Journal of Mississippi History 54 (February 1992): 59-87.

41. 41.Maurine H. Beasley and Richard R. Harlow, Voices of Change: Southern Pulitzer Winners (McLean, Va.: University Press of America, 1979), 83. This book contains verbatim interviews with both Smith and Harkey.

42. 42.See profiles of Smith in Look, November 16, 1965, for details of the editor's early career.

43. 43.Lexington Advertiser, June 30, 1960.

44. 44."Mississippi: Determined Lady," Columbia Journalism Review, Fall 1963, 37-38.

45. 45.Lexington Advertiser, July 26, 1960.

46. 46.Lexington Advertiser, April 16, 1961.

47. 47.Lexington Advertiser, Jan. 13, 1955; June 9, 1955; January 29, 1959.

48. 48.Clarion-Ledger, January 5, 1961.

49. 49.Lexington Advertiser, January 5, 1961.

50. 50.Lexington Advertiser, March 16, 1961.

51. 51.Lexington Advertiser, May 25, June 1, 1961.

52. 52.Lexington Advertiser, September 13, October 4, 1962.

53. 53.Lexington Advertiser, May 16, 1963; Beasley and Harlow, Voices of Change, 89.

54. 54.Beasley and Harlow, Voices of Change, 88.

55. 55.Lexington Advertiser, November 28, 1963.

56. 56.Current Biography, 1973, 385.

57. 57.Chicago Tribune, March 27, 1986.

58. 58.Biographical information about Emmerich is from J. Oliver Emmerich, Two Faces of Janus: The Saga of Deep South Change (Jackson, Miss.: University and College Press of Mississippi, 1973); and Sammy McDavid, "The Hide of a Rhino ... The Memory of an Ostrich," Alumnus magazine, Mississippi State University, Summer 1978, pp. 2-6.

59. 59.Emmerich, Two Faces of Janus, 87-89.

60. 60.Emmerich, Two Faces of Janus, pp. 115-117.

61. 61.Emmerich, Two Faces of Janus, 128.

62. 62.Lexington Enterprise-Journal, September 14, 1962; Emmerich, Two Faces of Janus, 127-128.

63. 63.McComb Enterprise-Journal, May 25, 1964; May 29, 1964.

64. 64.Manuscript, "The McComb, Mississippi, Story," J. Oliver Emmerich Papers, Mitchell Memorial Library, Mississippi State University; Washington Post, October 27, 1964; Emmerich, Two Faces of Janus, 132-134.

65. 65.McDavid, Alumnus, pp. 2-6.

66. 66.Emmerich, Two Faces of Janus, 142-147; McComb Enterprise-Journal, November 17, 1964.

67. 67.Drew Pearson column, November 1964, in J. Oliver Emmerich Papers; McComb Enterprise-Journal, November 19, 1964.

68. 68.Speech manuscript, dated 1964, Wilson Minor papers, Mitchell Memorial Library, Mississippi State University.

69. 69.Ira B. Harkey Jr., The Smell of Burning Crosses: An Autobiography of a Mississippi Newspaperman (Jacksonville, Ill.: Harris-Wolfe, 1967), 21-28.

70. 70.Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 39-42, 45.

71. 71.Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 54-55, 60-61, 65.

72. 72.Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 96, 101, 104.

73. 73.Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 134, 137, 141.

74. 74.Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 149, 162, 163.

75. 75."On Mississippi," Columbia Journalism Review, Winter 1963, pp. 2-3; Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 18, 123-124.

76. 76.Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 182.

77. 77.Harkey, Smell of Burning Crosses, 19.

78. 78.P.D. East, The Magnolia Jungle: The Life, Times and Education of a Southern Editor (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1960), 112, 121, 128.

79. 79.East, Magnolia Jungle, 126, 133.

80. 80.Petal Paper, February 9, 1956, cited in East, Magnolia Jungle, pp. 165-167; East, Magnolia Jungle, 168-172.

81. 81.East, Magnolia Jungle, 172, 179.

82. 82.Petal Paper, March 15, 1956, cited in East, Magnolia Jungle, 176-177, 180.

83. 83.Southern Reposure, July 1956, cited in East, Magnolia Jungle, 196, 199.

84. 84.East, Magnolia Jungle, 225, 239.

85. 85.Petal Paper, March 24, 1960, June 23, 1960, August 25, 1960, all cited in Huey, Rebel With a Cause, 151-153.

86. 86.Huey, Rebel With a Cause, 165.

87. 87.Petal Paper, May 3, 1963, cited in Huey, Rebel With a Cause, 177-178.

88. 88.Petal Paper, June 1963, cited in Huey, Rebel With a Cause, 187.

89. 89.Huey, Rebel With a Cause, 191, 200.

90. 90.Background material on Carter is taken primarily from Harry D. Marsh, "Hodding Carter's Newspaper on School Desegregation, 1954-1955," Journalism Monographs 92 (May 1985). Marsh is a useful source because he worked for Carter at the Delta Democrat-Times in the 1950s.

91. 91.Delta Democrat-Times, May 18, 20, 26, 1954; August 22, 1954.

92. 92.Delta Democrat-Times, April 3, 1955.

93. 93.Betty Carter oral history, University of Southern Mississippi, Volume 150 (1979), cited in Waldron, Hodding Carter, 291.

94. 94.Ibid; Daily News, December 6, 1961.

95. 95.Delta Democrat-Times, December 10, 1961.

96. 96."Statement in Carter Papers," cited in Waldron, Hodding Carter, 294.

97. 97.New York Times Magazine, February 11, 1962.

98. 98.Delta Democrat-Times, September 29, 1962; Betty Carter unpublished memoirs, cited in Waldron, Hodding Carter, 299.

99. 99.New York Times Magazine, June 23, 1963.

100. 100.U.S. News and World Report, June 29, 1964.

101. 101.Hodding Carter to George S. Adler, January 5, 1965, cited in Waldron, Hodding Carter, 310.

102. 102.New York Post, August 4, 1965.

103. 103.Quoted in Waldron, Hodding Carter, 311.

104. 104.Marsh, "Hodding Carter's Newspaper on School Desegregation," 19.

105. 105.Quoted in Waldron, Hodding Carter, 251.

This page is maintained by Dr. David R. Davies at the University of Southern Mississippi.