Sunflower


Campbell Jr., Milton

Inverness is the birthplace of the blues artist, Milton Campbell, Jr., also known as “Little Milton.” Born in Inverness in 1934, he grew up in Greenville. His song, “We’re Gonna Make It”was produced in 1965 and was inspired by the civil rights movement. He recorded with various record labels, including Sun and Stax, and he […]

Eastland, Senator James

Senator Eastland, born in Doddsville and known as “Slippery Jim,”served in the Senate in 1941 and from 1943 to 1972. His legacy is one of opposition to equal rights for all Mississippians. Before serving in the Senate, he was trained as a lawyer and served in the Mississippi House of Representatives. He opposed civil rights […]

Fannie Lou Hamer Home Site

From her niece’s home in the community of Cascilla, Mississippi, SNCC worker Charles McLaurin took Mrs. Hamer to Tougaloo College in Jackson, Mississippi in the fall of 1962. At Tougaloo they joined a group of SNCC field workers heading to an organizing conference in Nashville, Tennessee. Following the conference, Mrs. Hamer went on a speaking […]

Fannie Lou Hamer Memorial Park

Byron Street Fannie Lou Hamer is buried here, and thetombstone contains her oft-quoted phrase, “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired.” Sources: Olson, Lynne. Freedom’s Daughters: The Unsung Heroines of the Civil Rights Movement from 1830 to 1970. New York and London: Scribner, 2001. Fannie Lou Hamer Speech before the Credentials Committee, 22 […]

Fannie Lou Hamer and Civil Rights in Ruleville

The story of the Civil Rights Movement in Ruleville cannot be told apart from the story of Fannie Lou Hamer. The youngest of 20 children in her family, Hamer experienced the hardships of life as a sharecropper. Like many other African American children at the time, she went to school for just four months each […]

Freedom Schools of Sunflower

Besides registering African Americans to vote as part of Freedom Summer in 1964, SNCC also created Freedom Schools in the Delta, which focused on black history, politics, and artistic achievement. The schools educated both children and adults. Moye reports in Let the People Decide that,”[S]chools [were] a means of consciousness-raising . . . An alternative […]

Grave Site of Fannie Lou Hamer

In 1969, Fannie Lou Hamer bought 40 acres of land to use as a cooperative “Freedom Farm.” The co-op allowed area families to receive vegetables from the farm for a modest one-dollar membership fee. The co-op ultimately went bankrupt, possibly because Mrs. Hamer–always compassionate to the poor surrounding her–allowed hundreds of families who could not […]

Home of Fannie Lou Hamer

In 1969, the Hamers moved to this location. The lot was purchased by Charles McLaurin and Joe Harris (manager of the Freedom Farm, an agricultural cooperative launched by Mrs. Hamer). The Freedom Farm organization purchased the lot, but the small, two-bedroom shotgun house that was moved to the site was purchased elsewhere by Mrs. Hamer. […]

Home of Herman & Hattie Sisson

Night riders were a very real danger to supporters of the Civil Rights Movement, especially so in the autumn of 1962. On the night of September 10, they fired multiple gunshots into the Sisson’s home. Mr. and Mrs. Sisson were being visited by their granddaughter, Vivian Hillet and her friend, Marylene Burks, both of whom […]

King, Annie Mae

Annie Mae King helped African-Americans register to vote, and during Freedom Summer she housed white volunteers. As a result of her efforts she was fired from her job as a cook, and her home was bombed. Annie May King also was a teacher of Head Start, a federally funded educational program with the purpose of […]

Marlow Plantation

Note: This site is located on private property outside Ruleville and is included here only to provide historical context. In the early 1960s, Fannie Lou Hamer worked as a timekeeper on the Marlow Plantation. In late August of 1962, SNCC workers James Bevel and Bob Moses persuaded 18 Ruleville residents to go to the county […]

Mary Tucker Home Site

This vacant lot on what was formerly known as Byron Street was the location of Mary Tucker’s home. Area whites knew that Fannie Lou Hamer had moved here after leaving the Marlow plantation. When Hamer learned that her friend’s home was in danger because of her presence, she moved north, staying with a niece in […]

McDonald Home Site

Although it no longer exists, Joe & Rebecca McDonald’s home once was located on this site (formerly 909 Reden Street). The McDonalds were active throughout the Civil Rights Movement regardless of the personal cost. They were the first to open their home to SNCC workers, taking in Charles McLaurin and Charlie Cobb, Jr. in August […]

McLaurin, Charles

In the 1960s, Charles McLaurin came to Ruleville as part of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), in order to register black voters. McLaurin initially worked out of the Williams Chapel Missionary Baptist Church, using it as an venue to meet local blacks and run a voter educational school. He had to stop using the […]

Parchman, Mississippi State Penitentiary

Parchman is the Mississippi State Penitentiary. During the Freedom Rides in 1961, Freedom Riders were arrested in Jackson for challenging segregation on public buses. Twenty-seven riders rode from Montgomery, Alabama to Jackson on May 24, 1961. As soon as they got off the bus, they were immediately arrested. After they were sentenced to jail, more […]

William Chapel M.B. Church

Amzie Moore, an African American businessman from nearby Cleveland, brought workers from the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committe (SNCC) to Sunday morning services here on August 9, 1962. They met Joe and Rebecca McDonald, leaders in the curch who opened their home to the young Civil Rights workers. Two weeks later, the SNCC staffers held the […]