Freedom Riders at the Alamo

Breach of Peace: Portraits of the 1961 Mississippi Freedom Riders photographer and author Eric Etheridge moderates the discussion with Freedom Riders Lewis Zuchman and Hezekiah Watkins at the Jackson screening of “Freedom Riders” by Stanley Nelson. The full-house gathering at the historic Alamo Theater also heard Riders Catherine Burks-Brooks, Bill Harbour, and Hank Thomas, who were featured in the film. Recorded by Mississippi Public Broadcasting for a later telecast, the evening’s program included civil rights veterans Hollis Watkins, Frankye Adams-Johnson, and Euvester Simpson, who led freedom songs. Dr. Leslie Burl McLemore, MF50th Foundation board president, welcomed guests, and C. Liegh McInnis, poet, offered a literary tribute.
Photo by Tommiea P. King

Violence in Anniston

Seven Freedom Riders were among the 12 passengers on board the Greyhound bus that was firebombed near Anniston, Alabama, on May 14, 1961— Bert Bigelow, Ed Blankenheim, Genevieve Hughes, Jimmy McDonald, Mae Frances Moultrie, Hank Thomas, and Joe Perkins.

Freedom Riders at Board Meeting

Freedom Riders attending the November 2010 Mississippi Freedom 50th Foundation board meeting were Robert Singleton, Hank Thomas, Helen Singleton, Lewis Zuchman, Dion Diamond, Fred Clark, Hezekiah Watkins, Catherine Burks-Brooks, Bill Harbour, Mary Harrison Lee, John Moody, and Pauline Knight-Ofosu.

Revisiting the Black Hole

Freedom Rider Hank Thomas visits the Black Hole, the solitary confinement cell in which he was imprisoned while at the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman in 1961. Thomas made his first trip to Parchman in 49 years as a participant in the Mississippi Center for Justice’s Great Mississippi Road Trip in October 2010. He will lead fellow Freedom Riders back to Parchman during Return of the Freedom Riders in May. Photo courtesy Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman.

Challenging Segregation

In their efforts to end segregation in interstate transportation throughout the South, Freedom Riders challenged the use of racially separate waiting rooms, rest rooms, and lunch counters at train depots, airports, and bus stations, including the Trailways Bus Station in Jackson, shown here.

Photo courtesy Mississippi Department of Archives and History.

Waiting for the Bus

With a paddy wagon standing by, Jackson policemen await the Freedom Riders at the Greyhound Bus Station in Jackson in 1961.

Photo courtesy Mississippi Department of Archives and History.

Freedom Riders

Freedom Riders Joy Reagon, Charles Butler, Ruby Doris Smith, Joe McDonald, Kenneth Shilman, and Price Chatham were arrested on June 2 at the Trailways Bus Station in Jackson and taken to jail in a paddy wagon. Photo courtesy Mississippi Department of Archives and History.