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Guide to the Joseph A. Sinsheimer Papers, 1962-1987

Abstract

Joseph A. Sinsheimer graduated from Duke University in 1987 with an A.B. in History. He recorded oral histories of the Mississippi civil rights movement between 1983 and 1987, with grant support from the Lyndhurst Foundation. Collection includes audio recordings and transcripts of oral history interviews and speeches regarding the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in Mississippi in the 1960s, with brief summaries. Focus is on the "Freedom Summer" of 1964. Notable interviews include Robert Parris Moses, Sam Block, Hazel Palmer, Jesse Jackson, Gray Evans, Frank Smith, and many more. Collection also contains a small amount of manuscript materials from the civil rights era, including clippings, reports, scrapbooks, and correspondence.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Joseph A. Sinsheimer papers
Creator
Sinsheimer, Joseph Andrew, 1962-
Extent
5.0 linear feet, 689 items
Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Location
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
Language
Materials in English

Collection Overview

The collection chronicles the work of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and its involvement with resident civil rights activists in Mississippi. Materials consist primarily of recorded oral histories and their transcriptions, but also extend to speeches and unpublished papers. The records date from 1962 to 1987, and were compiled and collected by Duke University alumnus Joseph A. Sinsheimer with the support of a fellowship from the Lyndhurst Foundation.

Local activists represent their experiences in a series of twenty-five interviews that were conducted at movement centers throughout Mississippi, including McComb, Jackson, Greenwood, and Clarksdale. Leading SNCC activists Samuel Block, David Dennis, and Silas McGhee are also represented in interviews conducted between 1983 and 1987. There are also four extensive interviews and transcribed speeches of noted SNCC activist and leader of the Mississippi civil rights movement Robert Moses, as well as interviews of community leaders C.C. Bryant and Hazel Palmer, conducted by Moses himself. The collection also features unpublished speeches and papers given in the 1960s; additionally, transcripts of exchanges at academic conferences extend the scope of the collection to reconstructions of events by historians in the 1970s and 1980s. The collection also contains court records and correspondence to national leaders like Hubert Humphrey and Robert Kennedy, which report on the use of organized violence in the counter-efforts of segregationists.

Sinsheimer's records have already been cited by historians Taylor Branch and William Chafe, and played a significant role in the 1994 documentary "Freedom on my Mind." Although Sinsheimer's published articles on the Mississippi Movement have focused on the resistance of SNCC to segregationists policies and organized violence, the documentation of this collection sheds light on a wider range of concerns. The interviews detail the role of the black church in organizational activities; sexism within the movement; the establishment of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party in 1964; black nationalism and the role of white student workers in the civil rights movement after the "Freedom Summer;" as well as the significance of national media in the struggle.

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

In addition, original audiovisual materials are closed to patron use. Use copies are available in the collection.

All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

Interviews and speeches, 1963-1987

The oral history interviews in this collection were largely conducted and collected by Joseph Sinsheimer. The materials have been arranged by interview, and also include some speeches and occasional interviews by other historians, such as Howard Zinn, Clayborne Carson, and John Dittmer. Some transcripts do not have accompanying audiocassettes; likewise, some audiocassettes do not include a transcript. Sinsheimer's interviews were often accompanied by a memorandum in which he offered a brief biographical note on the interviewee and detailed the subjects covered in the interview. These notes have been included below when present in the collection.

Adams, Victoria Gray interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1987 August 23

Leading civil rights activist in Hattiesburg, MS. Interview with Sinsheimer. Gray discussed: Vernon Dahmer's leadership in the local civil rights campaign; her first encounter with SNCC field secretary Hollis Watkins; economic reprisals directed against black civil rights workers by the local white community; lack of adult leadership in Mississippi movement; Lawrence Guyot's role in the Hattiesburg campaign.

Transcript
Box 1
Allen, Emma interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 May 5

Local civil rights activist in Greenwood, MS. Interview with Sinsheimer. Allen discussed: Robert Moses' leadership role in the movement; the role of different black churches in supporting the Greenwood movement; black Greenwood's economic boycott of Slim Henderson's store in 1964; the difficulty of attempting to register to vote in Greenwood.

Original audiocassette
(72.0 minutes)
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0052
Transcript
Box 1
Block, Sam interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 December 12

SNCC's lead organizer in Greenwood, MS, 1962-1963. Interview with Sinsheimer. Block discussed: his childhood experiences with racism in Mississippi; his "recruitment" into the civil rights movement by Amzie Moore; developing a voter registration campaign in Greenwood; Cleveland Jordan's role in developing the Greenwood movement; Rev. Aaron Johnson's decision to open the First Christian Church to the movement; working with SNCC field secretary Willie Peacock in Greenwood; developing a voter registration campaign in Itta Bena, Mississippi; Bob Moses' role in the Mississippi campaign; the role of SNCC Executive Secretary James Forman in the Mississippi movement; the difficulty in getting black churches to open their doors to the movement; SNCC's relationship with the NAACP in the state; the psychological effects of the March on Washington in 1963; the need for greater staff education in the Mississippi movement.

Original audiocassette, 1 of 3
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0053
Original audiocassette, 2 of 3
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0054
Original audiocassette, 3 of 3
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0055
Transcript
Box 1
Bryant, C.C. with Robert Moses, 1983 July 9

Branch president of the McComb, MS, NAACP, 1954-1985. Transcript of Bryant and Robert Moses at the Mississippi Voices of the Civil Rights Movement Conference, McComb, MS.

Transcript
Box 1
Bryant, C.C. interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 February 7

Branch president of the McComb, MS, NAACP, 1954-1985. Interview with Sinsheimer. Bryant discussed: Amzie Moore's role in sending Robert Moses to McComb; voter registration classes in McComb and Amite County in 1961; the murder of Herbert Lee; working with Robert Moses during the 1961 voter registration campaign; civil rights activity in McComb during the 1964 Freedom Summer project; McComb's reaction to white civil rights workers in 1964; the role of the U.S. Justice Dept. in MS civil rights activity.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0056
Transcript
Box 1
Coles, Robert interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1983 November 19

Author of the Children of Crisis series; advisor to SNCC, 1963-1964. Interview with Sinsheimer. Coles discussed: the intense media scrutiny of the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project; the tension between SNCC staff and student volunteers; recollections of Dennis Sweeney; the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) challenge to the all-white delegation at the 1964 Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0057
Transcript
Box 1
Criss, Sarah interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 May 8

Reporter for the Memphis Commercial-Appeal, 1956-1980. Interview with Sinsheimer. Criss discussed: the pressure on white Southern newspaper reporters; the presence of the Ku Klux Klan in Greenwood; the role of various white officials in Greenwood, including former City Attorney Hardy Lott and former mayor Charles Sampson; reaction to the Beckwith trial (for the murder of Medgar Evers); the membership of the White Legal Defense Fund formed to support Beckwith; Hardy Lott's influence on the Greenwood Citizens Council; Greenwood's reaction to the 1964 Civil Rights Act; the tension between large plantation owners and other civic leaders in Greenwood over the issue of recruiting manufacturing jobs to the town in the late 1940s and 1950s.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0058
Transcript
Box 1
Emmerich, John, 1985 July 16
Transcript
Box 1
Dennis, David interviewed by John Dittmer, 1983 July 12

Head of CORE in Mississippi during the 1960s. Interview with John Dittmer. Dennis discussed: the development of the Council of Federated Organizations (COFO) in Mississippi; the development of the civil rights movement in Jackson, MS; the movements "failure" after 1964; his reaction to the Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City, 1964; the role of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party after 1964; the rise of black nationalism in Mississippi; the role of white students in the movement.

Transcript
Box 1
Evans, Gray interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 July 10

Leader of the moderate white community in Greenwood, MS; prosecuting attorney for Greenwood during most of the early 1960s. Interview with Sinsheimer. Evans discussed: his relationship with U.S. Congressman Frank Smith and other federal officials; negotiating on the telephone with Robert Kennedy; his relationship with U.S. Justice Dept. official John Doar; Hardy Lott's influence on Greenwood officials.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0059
Transcript
Box 1
Evans, Gray interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 May 5

Leader of the moderate white community in Greenwood, MS; prosecuting attorney for Greenwood during most of the early 1960s. Interview with Sinsheimer. Evans discussed: tensions between Greenwood city officials, 1963-1964; a fistfight between Buff Hammond and Charlie Sampson that sprung from integration efforts at the Leflore Theatre; race relations in Greenwood in the late 1950s; leaders of the Greenwood Citizens Council.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0060
Transcript
Box 1
Frank, Barney interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1983 November 14

Student volunteer for the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project, 1964; member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts, 1981-2013. Interview with Sinsheimer. Frank discussed: how he was recruited to the project by Al Lowenstein; his experiences that summer in Jackson, MS; Al Lowenstein's reaction to the MFDP's Atlantic City challenge.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0061
Transcript
Box 1
Greene Family interviewed by Clayborne Carson, 1978 September 16

Active in the civil rights movement in Greenwood during the 1960s. Interview with Clayborne Carson.

Transcript
Box 1
Greg, Victoria interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1989 May 8
Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0062
Group interview (Charles Smith, William Jenkins, Joe Martin, Rev. Harry Bowie, Edith Moore, L.B. Butler, and Jessie Devines) interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 February 16

Participants include Charles Smith, William Jenkins, Joe Martin, Rev. Harry Bowie, Edith Moore, L.B. Butler, and Jessie Devines, all civil rights activists in McComb, MS. Interview with Sinsheimer. Participants discussed: their childhood in the segregated South; black role models in the segregated South; leadership of C.C. Bryant in McComb race relations; the creation of the Pike County Voter's League in the 1940s; a school walk-out by a group of black Burgland High School students in the fall of 1961; changes in the movement from 1961 to 1964; role of Robert Moses in the Mississippi campaign.

Transcript
Box 1
Guyot, Lawrence interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1987 May 4

SNCC field secretary from Mississippi. Interview with Sinsheimer. Guyot discussed: Amzie Moore's role in the Delta civil rights movement; development of Greenwood, MS voter registration campaign, 1962-1963; arrest of the Greenwood SNCC staff in 1963 by white authorities; the role of Ed Cothran in the Greenwood campaign; the role of black women in the Mississippi movement; the role of Tougaloo College in the development of civil rights activity in Hattiesburg, MS, 1962-1963; the success of the Freedom School program in Hattiesburg; the credential challenge by the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party in 1964; SNCC's focus or lack of focus on economic issues in Mississippi in the mid-1960s; the correlation between information and power; the development of the Delta Ministry in Mississippi; how to avoid movement "burnout"; the 1988 presidential election.

Original audiocassette, 1 of 2
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0063
Original audiocassette, 2 of 2
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0064
Transcript
Box 1
Gwin, Arnold "Bo" interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 May 7

Former legal associate of Hardy Lott. Interview with Sinsheimer. Gwin discussed: the role of the Greenwood Citizens Council in civic affairs; the black community's boycott of Greenwood's white merchants, 1967-1968; Hardy Lott's relationship to U.S. senators Eastland and Stennis; the leadership of the Greenwood Citizens Council; Lott's relationship with U.S. Federal District Judge Clayton; relationship between Judge Clayton and U.S. Justice Dept. representative John Doar; Lott's role as city attorney; Greenwood's white community support of Beckwith after Evers' murder; members of the White Legal Defense Fund set up to support Beckwith.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0065
Transcript
Box 1
Harding, Vincent - speech, 1964

Transcript of a speech delivered by Harding to the student volunteers participating in the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project, 1964. Harding discussed: history of the African American experience in America; sexual tension that some volunteers would face in Mississippi; potential black racism in the project; the need for volunteers to try to help build local leadership during the summer.

Audiocassette copy
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0066
Transcript
Box 1
Holland, Ida Mae interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1987 March 14
Original audiocassette, 1 of 2
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0067
Original audiocassette, 2 of 2
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0068
Jackson, Jesse - speech, 1985 June 27

Transcript of a speech delivered by Jackson at the 21st Anniversary memorial service for James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner at the Goodway Baptist Church in Philadelphia, MS.

Original audiocassette
Box 6
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0069
Transcript
Box 1
Johnson, Rev. Aaron, interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, undated

Former pastor at the First Christian Church in Greenwood, MS. Interview with Sinsheimer. Johnson discussed the development of the Greenwood campaign, 1962-1963.

Original audiocassette, 1 of 2
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0070
Original audiocassette, 2 of 2
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0071
Transcript
Box 1
Johnson, June interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1987 May 5

Leading civil rights activist in Greenwood, MS, during the 1960s. Interview with Sinsheimer. Johnson discussed: her recruitment to the movement by Robert Moses; her beating at the Winona, MS, bus stop; family's reaction to her civil rights activity; Stokley Carmichael's leadership style; the role of Father Nathaniel Machesky in the Greenwood movement; Silas McGhee's sit-in attempts in Greenwood; the boycott of Slim Henderson's store after he beat a local black woman; civil rights activity in Greenwood in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Transcript
Box 1
Jordan, David interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 June 13

Son of Greenwood civil rights activist Cleveland Jordan. Interview with Sinsheimer.

Transcript
Box 1
King, Edwin interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1987 February 23

Aaron Henry's running mate during the 1963 Freedom Vote campaign; heavily involved in the Jackson, MS, civil rights movement for more than twenty years; served as MFDP delegate to the 1964 Democratic National Convention. Interview with Sinsheimer. King discussed: civil rights activity at Tougaloo College, 1961-1962; role of Mrs. Doris Allison in the Jackson movement; John Salter's role in the Jackson movement; development of student leadership at Tougaloo; interaction between SNCC staff and Tougaloo students, 1962-1963.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0072
Transcript
Box 1
Ladner, Dr. Joyce interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 May 23

Active in the Mississippi civil rights movement through the 1960s, particularly in Hattiesburg. Interview with Sinsheimer. Ladner discussed: her reaction to the Freedom Rides coming to MS in 1961; relationship with Medgar Evers before he was assassinated; her reaction to the murder of Emmitt Till as a child; her analysis of Robert Moses' leadership style; friction between college-educated Northern SNCC staffers and the Mississippi staff members; the issue of sexism in the civil rights movement.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0073
Transcript
Box 1
Lott, Hardy interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 May 6

Former city attorney for Greenwood, MS; leader of white opposition to the civil rights movement in Mississippi; defense counsel for Bryan de la Beckwith during his first trial for the murder of Medgar Evers. Interview with Sinsheimer. Lott discussed; the role of Mayor Sampson and Police Commissioner Buff Hammond in city politics; the role of Police Chief Curtis Lary in responding to civil rights demonstrations; how white leaders in the Delta responded to various economic boycott efforts; the role of the Mississippi Power and Light Company in recruiting industry to the Delta; negotiations with John Doar at the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Dept.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0074
Transcript
Box 1
Lowenstein, Allard - speech, 1979

Transcript of a speech delivered by Lowenstein at Millsaps College in either 1978 or 1979. Lowenstein discussed: his involvement in the civil rights movement; his recollections of the 1963 Freedom Vote campaign; his recollections of the Mississippi civil rights movement in general.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0075
Transcript
Box 1
Lynd, Staughton and Alice, interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 December 30

Staughton Lynd served as the Director of the Freedom School Program during the 1964 Freedom Summer Project. Interview with Sinsheimer. The Lynds discussed: planning for the Freedom School program; Moses' impact on the summer volunteers in Oxford, Ohio training sessions for the Summer Project; SNCC staff dynamics; successful elements of the Freedom School program; Moses' opposition to the Vietnam War and his ability to connect it with Mississippi; the development of the Assembly of Underrepresented People; the liberal-left split inside the civil rights movement; the issue of movement "burnout".

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0076
Transcript
Box 1
Machesky, Nathaniel interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 June 26

Catholic priest in Greenwood during most of the 1960s; founder of the St. Francis Center in the heart of black Greenwood; active supporter of the civil rights movement. Interview with Sinsheimer. Machesky discussed: Dick Gregory's effort to bring food to black Greenwood in the winter of 1962-1963; the formation of a weekly newsletter, The Center Light, to serve black Greenwood; the relationship between Greenwood's white Catholics and black community; development of economic boycotts in Greenwood, 1967-1969; the formation of a credit union in Greenwood to serve the town's black population; the role of various white leaders in Greenwood, 1962-1963.

Transcript
Box 1
McGhee, Silas interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1987 February 25

Civil rights activist in Greenwood, MS. Interview with Sinsheimer. McGhee discussed: his reaction to the Freedom Rides and the North Carolina sit-ins in 1960-1961; his attempt to integrate the Leflore Theater in Greenwood in 1963; speaking at a mass meeting in Clarksdale, MS; working to organize the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party in the state; the organization of a SNCC "folk festival" on his family's property in 1963 that featured a performance by Bob Dylan; reaction to Medgar Evers' shooting in Greenwood.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0077
Transcript
Box 1
McLemore, Dr. Leslie interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 February 14

Vice-chair of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, 1964. Interview with Sinsheimer. McLemore discussed: his work for the MFDP during the summer of 1964; leadership qualities of Robert Moses; Moses' relationship with Amzie Moore; leadership qualities of Fannie Lou Hamer; Martin Luther King's role at the 1964 Democratic National Convention; Aaron Henry's role at the 1964 Democratic National Convention.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0078
Transcript
Box 2
Minor, Bill interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 February 11

Jackson, MS, correspondent for the New Orleans Times Picayune during the early 1960s. Interview with Sinsheimer. Minor discussed: the difficulty of covering civil rights stories for a Southern newspaper during that period; former U.S. Justice Dept. John Doar's role in Mississippi; the 1963 governor's race in Mississippi; the role of the White Citizen Council organizations in Mississippi during the late 1950s and early 1960s.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0079
Transcript
Box 2
Moore, James interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 June 18

Prominent civil rights activist in Greenwood, MS. Interview with Sinsheimer. Moore discussed the development of the Greenwood campaign, 1962-1963.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0080
Transcript
Box 2
Moses, Robert - speech, 1980 February 3

Transcript of Moses' comments at the Conference on Ethics and Morality: Voices of the Civil Rights Movement in Washington, D.C.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0081
Transcript
Box 2
Moses, Robert interviewed by John Dittmer, 1983 August 15

Interview with John Dittmer. Moses discussed: his voter registration work in Southwest Mississippi in 1961; the statewide organization of white resistance to civil rights work; his feelings following the MFDP challenge at the 1964 Democratic National Convention; Amzie Moore's role in the Mississippi movement; the NAACP in Mississippi; the role of white students in the 1964 Freedom Summer Project; tensions between different civil rights groups working in Mississippi; a proposed literacy project in Mississippi in 1964-1965.

Transcript
Box 2
Moses, Robert interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1983 November 19

Interview with Sinsheimer.

Original audiocassette, 1 of 2
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0082
Original audiocassette, 2 of 2
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0083
Transcript
Box 2
Moses, Robert interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1984 April 11

Interview with Sinsheimer.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0084
Transcript
Box 2
Moses, Robert interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1984 December 5

Interview with Sinsheimer.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0085
Transcript
Box 2
Moses, Robert - speech, 1987 June 8

Transcript of a speech delivered at the Organizers Training Center 15th Anniversary Dinner, San Francisco, CA. Discussed the role of Ella Baker, Hazel Palmer, and Fannie Lou Hamer. Also references the Duke Leadership Program from 1985.

Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0086
Transcript
Box 2
Palmer, Hazel interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 June 19

Local activist from Jackson, MS, who became active in Mississippi in the early 1960s; went on to become a MFDP delegate to the 1964 Democratic National Convention. Interview with Sinsheimer.

Transcript
Box 2
Palmer, Hazel interviewed by Robert Moses, session 1, 1985 October 26

Interview with Robert Moses as part of a Duke Leadership Program.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0087
Transcript
Box 2
Palmer, Hazel interviewed by Robert Moses, session 2, 1985 October 26

Interview with Robert Moses as part of a Duke Leadership Program.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0088
Transcript
Box 2
Palmer, Hazel interviewed by Robert Moses, session 3, 1985 October 26

Interview with Robert Moses as part of a Duke Leadership Program.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0089
Transcript
Box 2
Payne, Bruce interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1983 March 18

Student at Yale University and one of the first northern white students to volunteer in Mississippi. Interview with Sinsheimer. Payne discussed: Allard Lowenstein's role in recruiting students to the Mississippi movement; Robert Moses' leadership style; the importance of the 1963 Freedom Vote in the Mississippi campaign.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0090
Transcript
Box 2
Payne, Bruce interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1983 October 24

Student at Yale University and one of the first northern white students to volunteer in Mississippi. Interview with Sinsheimer. Payne discussed: Allard Lowenstein's role in recruiting students to the Mississippi movement; Robert Moses' leadership style; the importance of the 1963 Freedom Vote in the Mississippi campaign.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0091
Transcript
Box 2
Peacock, Willie interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 February 8

SNCC field secretary in Mississippi, 1962-1965; particularly active in Greenwood during the 1963 voter registration campaign. Interview with Sinsheimer. Peacock discussed: the development of the NAACP chapter at Rust College in 1961 following the Greensboro sit-ins; meeting Robert Moses in Fall 1961; renewal of the Marshall County Voter's League, 1962; Amzie Moore's relationship with Robert Moses and other young SNCC organizers; formation of a SNCC singing quartet with Peacock and Hollis Watkins; working on voter registration activity in Sunflower County with Fannie Lou Hamer; assassination attempt on Jimmy Travis and Robert Moses outside Greenwood in 1963; problems in the 1964 Freedom Summer Project.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0092
Transcript
Box 2
Pitcher, Mattie interviewed by Howard Zinn, 1963 August 15

Active in the 1963 civil rights demonstrations in Greenwood. Interview with Howard Zinn. Pilcher discussed: her personal family history in Greenwood; changes in Greenwood's race relations as a result of civil rights activity; the arrival of SNCC coordinator Samuel Block in Greenwood; attendance at a SNCC mass meeting featuring comedian Dick Gregory; attendance at SNCC-sponsored voter registration classes; her son's decision to attend Tougaloo College.

Transcript
Box 2
Rustin, Bayard - speech, 1963 December 1

Transcript of a speech delivered at the Fourth Annual SNCC Conference, Washington, D.C.

Transcript
Box 2
Sellers, Cleveland interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 March 30

Former SNCC field secretary. Interview with Sinsheimer. Sellers discussed: his tenure at Howard University as a student and a civil rights activist; class divisions among the student population at Howard; his first encounters with Malcolm X during the summer of 1963; the impact of Emmett Till's murder on his political development; tensions between SNCC staff and the summer volunteers at Ohio training sessions for the 1964 Freedom Summer Project; Robert Moses' leadership role at the Ohio training sessions; searching for the bodies of the three "missing" civil rights workers in Philadelphia, MS; working in Holly Springs, MS, during the 1964 Freedom Summer Project; John Doar's efforts to protect civil rights workers in Mississippi; sexual tensions between black SNCC staffers and white volunteers; his role in coordinating MFDP activities at the Democratic National Convention; internal discussions among MFDP leaders in response to the Johnson administration's proposed "compromise."

Original audiocassette, 1 of 3
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0093
Original audiocassette, 2 of 3
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0094
Original audiocassette, 3 of 3
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0095
Transcript
Box 2
Sitton, Claude interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 January 21

Former reporter for the New York Times based in Atlanta; covered many major civil rights stories in Mississippi during the early 1960s. Interview with Sinsheimer. Sitton discussed: the disappearance of three civil rights workers during the 1964 Freedom Summer Project; violence associated with SNCC's voter registration activities in McComb, MS; response of the U.S. Justice Dept. to major events in Mississippi.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0096
Transcript
Box 2
Smith, Frank interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 June 28

Former member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Greenwood, MS. Interview with Sinsheimer. Smith discussed: negotiations between the Kennedy administration and Greenwood, MS, during the 1963 civil rights demonstrations in town; Hardy Lott's role in those negotiations; Lott's role in the Greenwood Citizens Council; Thatchall Walt's decision to leave Greenwood after threats from the Ku Klux Klan; role of cotton production/warehousing in the city's economy.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0097
Transcript
Box 2
Smith, Frank interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1986 May 23

Former SNCC field secretary from Mississippi. Interview with Sinsheimer. Smith discussed: his civil rights activities in Holly Springs, MS; Moses' leadership role in Mississippi; the role of white students in the Mississippi civil rights movement; SNCC's efforts in Greenwood, MS; his reaction to the assassination of Medgar Evers; his experience in organizing voter registration drives in Hattiesburg, MS; James Forman's influences on SNCC staff in Mississippi; Aaron Henry's role in the Mississippi campaign.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0098
Transcript
Box 2
Smith, Rev. R.L.T. interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 February 12

Prominent civil rights leader from Jackson, MS; ran for U.S. House of Representatives in 1962 in a campaign managed by Robert Moses. Interview with Sinsheimer. Smith discussed: his relationship with Amzie Moore; Robert Moses' influence on the movement; his decision to run for Congress in 1962; campaigning in rural Mississippi; the role of moderate newspapers in the state.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0099
Transcript
Box 2
"Story of Greenwood, Mississippi" - recording, 1963

Transcript of recording produced for SNCC by Guy Carawan, Folkway Records, NY. Includes Robert Moses, Dave Sanders, Fannie Lou Hamer, Cleveland Jordan, Willie Peacock, Alice Blackman, Hollis Watkins, Dick Gregory, Medgar Evers, and Rev. Barber.

Transcript
Box 2
Taylor, Lola and Laura interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 June 18
Original audiocassette
Box 7
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0080
Transcript
Box 2
Thomas, Norman - press conference, 1963 November

Transcript of the SNCC Press Conference at the Fourth Annual SNCC Conference, Washington, D.C. Features Julian Bond, Norman Thomas, Robert Moses, James Forman, Bill Hanson, and Frank Smith.

Transcript
Box 2
Thrasher, Sue interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1983 November 11

One of the first white students to get involved with the Southern civil rights movement; founder of the Southern Student Organizing Committee (SSOC); student volunteer in Biloxi during the 1964 Freedom Summer Project. Interview with Sinsheimer.

Original audiocassette
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0100
Transcript
Box 2
Watkins, Hollis interviewed by Joseph Sinsheimer, 1985 February 13-14

SNCC field secretary. Two interviews with Sinsheimer.

Original audiocassette, 1 of 2
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0101
Original audiocassette, 2 of 2
Box 8
Audio-cassette RL10056-CS-0102
Transcript
Box 2

Accompanying Materials, 1962-1993

2.0 boxes

Original correspondence, research files, scrapbooks, and supplemental information collected by Sinsheimer in support of his oral history project.

Scrapbooks, 1962-1964
(2.0 volumes)

Two scrapbooks with photocopied/photostat newspaper clippings covering the civil rights movement. Clippings include some articles written by Robert Moses. Articles cover voting rights, poll taxes, violence against and jailing of African Americans, and Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) activities, many of them in Mississippi.

Box 9
Robert Moses interview transcript and materials, 1964-1982

Includes a Smithsonian article on Moses, transcripts of his remarks at the National Museum of American History and a 1982 interview, and a reprint of a 1964 speech.

Box 10
Robert Moses transcripts, 1963, 1978, and undated

Amzie Moore's funeral, Nov. 1963; 4th Annual SNCC Conference, Feb. 1963; Atlanta SNCC Conference, 1978; Ella Jo Baker's birthday; and interview with John Dittmer.

Box 10
John Dittmer papers, 1964-1985

"The Movement in McComb (1961-1964)" and "In the Name of Freedom: The Politics of the Mississippi Movement, 1954-1964."

Box 10
Court Records and letters to Senator Hubert Humphrey and John F. Kennedy, 1963
Box 10
Newspaper and magazine clippings, 1963-1985

Clippings regarding civil rights in the South from Human Organization, The Reporter, and others. Also includes "Revolution in Mississippi," a publication from Students for a Democratic Society.

Box 10
Manuscript for book on Robert Moses by Eric R. Burner, 1993
(2.0 folders)

Letter and manuscript for book to be published by New York University Press.

Box 10
Speeches, letters, interviews, and surveys, 1963-1977

Lengthy correspondence from Henry Aronson and Stephen Bingham; speech entitled "The Sense and the Use of History by Mississippians in the Movement Struggles;" 1977 Interview with Allard Lowenstein; 1963 Report from SNCC Field Secretary; and "Reflections on Martin Luther King Jr.--And Us," among other materials.

Box 10
"Freedom Summer" Tougaloo College conference proceedings, 1979
Box 10
Photographs: MFDP State Convention and Voter Registration, 1963-64
Box 10
Miscellaneous publications, 1981-1983

Signs and Cities by Elizabeth Sewell, Mississippi Folklore Register, and Southern Exposure: Stayed on Freedom, 1981

Box 10

Historical Note

Joseph A. Sinsheimer graduated from Duke University in 1987 with an A.B. in History. He recorded oral histories of the Mississippi civil rights movement between 1983 and 1987, with grant support from the Lyndhurst Foundation.

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Joseph A. Sinsheimer Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

The Joseph A. Sinsheimer Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 1987.

Processing Information

Processed by RL Staff, 1999

Encoded by Meghan Lyon, October 2013