Voting Rights

  • Bayard Rustin

    In this interview transcript, civil rights leader Bayard Rustin recalls his role in the 1947 Journey of Reconciliation, the 1963 March on Washington, and the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP). Rustin and his support of Gandhian nonviolence had a major influence on the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr., other civil rights leaders, and the demonstrations of the Civil Rights movement.

    Grades: 9-12
  • Eileen Kelley Walbert

    In the 1960s, Birmingham, Alabama's strict segregation laws, andviolence against blacks, inspired whites like Eileen Walbert, shown inthis interview, to form the Concerned White Citizens of Alabama. Walbertand other sympathetic whites participated in demonstrations for racialequality. Like many civil rights activists, they too suffered reprisals.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael)

    This interview transcript documents Stokely Carmichael's his work in the Civil Rights movement. Initially a believer in nonviolent direct action and a leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, Carmichael was arrested more than 30 times. By 1966, Carmichael's views changed. He began advocating "Black Power" and militant resistance to racism, leading the organization to become increasingly radical, diverging from the doctrine of passive resistance.

    Grades: 9-12
  • Rev. C. T. Vivian

    In this interview, civil rights leader Reverend C. T. Vivian recalls his role in the 1960 Nashville sit-in movement, the 1961 Freedom Rides, and the 1965 Selma voting rights campaign. An executive staff member of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), Vivian was an ardent advocate of nonviolence.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Robert Moses

    Robert Moses was a leader in the voting rights campaign of the 1960s. Raised and educated in the North, Moses put his teaching career on hold and moved to Mississippi, where he became one of the architects of the 1964 Freedom Summer Project and the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. In this interview, recorded for Eyes on the Prize, Moses talks about his desire to end racial discrimination by helping African Americans participate fully in the nation's political process.

    Grades: 9-12
  • Sheyann Webb

    Eight-year-old Sheyann Webb was among the youngest activists to demonstrate during the Civil Rights movement. In this interview, Webb recalls her decision to participate in the 1965 voting-rights march from Selma, Alabama, the resistance she encountered from her parents, and the violent force used by local officials to stop the march.

    Grades: 3-12
  • Voter Registration Training Tool

    In spite of the Fifteenth Amendment's ban on voting discrimination, many southern states used arbitrary voter registration tests to deny African Americans political access. Civil rights activists, including students at Miles College in Birmingham, used voter registration tools like these documents to fight discrimination. A question-and-answer sheet lists the answers to commonly asked questions on the tests; a questionnaire documents discrimination in the registration process.

    Grades: 6-12