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Potomac Books


Jackson, Mississippi, Jackson, Mississippi, 0803238088, 0-8032-3808-8, 978-0-8032-3808-4, 9780803238084, John R. Salter Jr. With a new introduction by the author, , Jackson, Mississippi, 0803245343, 0-8032-4534-3, 978-0-8032-4534-1, 9780803245341, John R. Salter Jr. With a new introduction by the author

Jackson, Mississippi
An American Chronicle of Struggle and Schism
John R. Salter Jr.
With a new introduction by the author

2011. 272 pp.
$18.95 t

This is the gripping story of the civil rights movement in Jackson, Mississippi, told by one of its foremost activists, John R. Salter Jr. In 1961 Salter, then a teacher at Tougaloo Southern Christian College, the private and almost entirely African American school just north of the state capital, became the adult advisor of the North Jackson NAACP Youth Council, a post that for lifelong activist Salter blossomed into impassioned involvement in the Jackson movement.

The struggle for civil rights featured some of the bloodiest resistance by a panoply of repressive resources—“lawmen,” hoodlums, politicians, and vigilantes—but also introduced Salter to the movement’s most compelling and important figures, including NAACP field secretary Medgar Evers. Jackson, Mississippi tells the riveting story of their campaigns to abolish Jim Crow, including a committed and courageous economic boycott of Jackson that was instrumental in the desegregation of the capital’s business district. A fierce and passionate retelling of frontline stories from a cultural revolution, Jackson, Mississippi is a vivid snapshot of the Deep South in the 1960s and a testament to the brilliant, dangerous, and historic actions of the civil rights activists there.

John R. Salter Jr. is an American Indian who now identifies himself as Hunter Gray and is a retired professor in the Department of American Indian Studies at the University of North Dakota. He is a social justice activist and freelance writer living in Pocatello, Idaho, who has won numerous awards for his social justice work.

“A meticulously crafted, almost hour-by-hour account of the rise and fall of one of the region’s more remarkable grass-roots protest movements.”—Journal of Mississippi History

“Essential reading. . . . A valuable account of events and insight into the internal dynamics of the [civil rights] movement.”—Journal of Southern History

“As history, Salter’s book is personal and on a human scale; telling us of a highly significant chapter in the civil rights movement. . . . Salter’s book deserves much attention by all who are committed to issues requiring fundamental social change.”—Social Development Issues

“John Salter provides a sympathetic, carefully reasoned, and highly readable first-person sociological account of the events surrounding Evers’ murder and its actual and symbolic connections with this transition in the civil rights movement.”—Social Forces: International Journal of Social Research

“[Salter] is able to produce an excellent case study in social change by focusing not on personalities but on the collective will and actions of people involved in a mass movement.”—Wisconsin Magazine of History

"Jackson, Mississippi presents a vivid insider's view of the Jackson boycott movement, the demonstrations that led to mass arrests, the actions of courageous young people, and the murder of Medgar Evers and the incredible tension of his funeral march. As you would expect, given that Salter was and is a sociologist and a radical, it also contains penetrating analysis of the role of each acting group, including the national office of the NAACP, black ministers, the city government and police force, White Citizens Council, etc. And it shows the important role played by Tougaloo, some of its students and faculty members (including Prof. Salter), and its president, A. D. Beittel."—Jim Loewen

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