Bates, Leonard

Leonard Bates was the brother-in-law of Daisy Bates, a civil rights activist and mentor to the nine students who integrated Little Rock High School in 1957.
The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission (MSSC) files state that Sterling Davis interviewed Daisy Bates around November 24, 1958, when Bates was visiting Leonard Bates and Ollie Bates, Leonard’s sister and Daisy’s sister-in-law, in DeSoto County. While Daisy was there, Leonard’s wife suddenly died and people suspected that she was poisoned. A county official named Sterling Wilson heard that the poison was meant for Daisy. As of July 1959, Daisy had not returned to visit Leonard and the family.

In 1960, the MSSC placed Leonard on a list of “potential agitators.” No further records or information has been found thus far.

Sources:

“Daisy Bates,” Wikipedia, 1 October 2012, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daisy_Bates_(civil_rights_activist).

“Sovereignty Commission Online: SCR ID # 1-7-0-3-1-1-1,” Mississippi Department of Archives and History, http://mdah.state.ms.us/arrec/digital_archives/sovcom/result.php?image=/data/sov_commission/images/png/cd01/000481.png&.

“Sovereignty Commission Online: SCR ID # 1-41-0-1-1-1-1,” Mississippi Department of Archives and History, http://mdah.state.ms.us/arrec/digital_archives/sovcom/result.php?image=/data/sov_commission/images/png/cd01/002950.png&.

“Sovereignty Commission Online: SCR ID # 2-130-0-4-2-1-1,” Mississippi Department of Archives and History, http://mdah.state.ms.us/arrec/digital_archives/sovcom/result.php?image=/data/sov_commission/images/png/cd06/041165.png&.

“Sovereignty Commission Online: SCR ID # 3-2-0-2-1-1-1,” Mississippi Department of Archives and History, http://mdah.state.ms.us/arrec/digital_archives/sovcom/result.php?image=/data/sov_commission/images/png/cd02/013966.png&.

“Sovereignty Commission Online: SCR ID # 9-0-0-15-1-1-1,” Mississippi Department of Archives and History, http://mdah.state.ms.us/arrec/digital_archives/sovcom/result.php?image=/data/sov_commission/images/png/cd08/059396.png&.