People

Palmer, Hazel

Mrs. Hazel Palmer, and elementary school maid, was an activist for the Freedom Democratic Party. In 1965, she and her husband filed a lawsuit challenging the 1963 closing of Jackson’s municipal swimming pools. A federal court upheld the pool closings, […]

Peacock, Willie B. Wazir

Willie B. Wazir Peacock was born in Charleston, Talahatchie County, MS. Wazir attended Rust College in 1960. While at Rust College Peacock began participating in sit-ins and boycotts. After College, Wazir went to work with Bob Moses, Amzie Moore and […]

Pearson, Betty: Oral History

Betty Pearson discusses growing up in Clarksdale, MS. She describes the impact her family had on her attitude towards race relations, an early experience that impacted her worldview, and growing up in a segregated society. She also talks about being […]

Perkins, Dr. John

John M. Perkins was born in 1930 on a cotton plantation outside of New Hebron, Miss. Orphaned by his mother’s death from malnutrition, Perkins was raised primarily by his paternal grandmother from the age of seven months. Although he did […]

Person, Charles: Oral History

Charles Person participated in the Freedom Rides in 1961. He speaks about how the Freedom Riders tested the various facilities and accommodations in the bus stations. He also describes the violence in Anniston, Alabama, and how Walter Bergman lost his […]

Phelps, Marcena A.

Marcena A. Phelps participated in the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi from 1960-1967. She was a member of the NAACP and SCLC. She helped register people to vote and assisted the freedom riders. When local churches used for meetings were […]

Pigee, Vera Mae

Vera Mae Pigee was an active member of the Coahoma Chapter of the NAACP.  She helped Aaron Henry found the chapter and directed the Youth Council.  Under her leadership, black members of the Youth Council entered the whites-only train station, […]

Prather, William Roy

William Roy Prather (c. 1944-1959): Fifteen-year-old African-American William Roy Prather was killed in Corinth in what whites called a “Halloween prank” on November 1, 1959. One of the eight youths involved was indicted on manslaughter charges, but not convicted. As […]

Price, Leontyne

Leontyne Price was the first successful black female opera singer and was born in Laurel, Mississippi, on February 10, 1927. She grew up in Laurel, Mississippi, and graduated from Oak Park High School (now only elementary, 1205 Queensburg Avenue Laurel, […]

Pride, Charlie Frank

Pride was born in Sledge, Quitman County, MS, in 1938. Charlie Pride was the first African American to be a successful country music musician. During his music career Charlie obtained twenty-nine No. 1 singles, and he was inducted into the […]