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 church when Mayor Dorrough threatened to shut off the utilities and cut tax exemptions because the church was not being used solely for worship (Moye 101). McLaurin responded by going door to door, holding voter registration meetings in yards. McLaurin’s efforts, along with those of other SNCC workers, enabled many blacks to vote by helping them register in Indianola. During his work, McLaurin met Fannie Lou Hamer, who became a model spokeswoman for black voters.

Sources:

Moye, J. Todd. Let the People Decide: Black Freedom and White Resistance Movements in Sunflower County, Mississippi. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2004.