Mississippi Challenge

Mildred Pitts Walter, Author Bradbury Press $18.95 (205p) ISBN 978-0-02-792301-8
Walter ( Justin and the Best Biscuits in the World ; Trouble's Child ) here painstakingly documents the courageous struggle of African Americans in Mississippi to overcome pervasive racism and to win their economic and political rights. The author notes that the influx of white cotton farmers into the state in the early 19th century led to the enslavement of four million African Americans by 1860. After the Civil War, former slaveholders' rise to power in Congress ``created a new kind of bondage for African-American citizens.'' Walter describes the bleak era of Reconstruction and the shocking, widespread mob lynchings that occurred during the first half of this century. She then focuses on a number of groups--chief among them the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party--that worked to end the violence and overturn the state's racist voting practices. Packed with statistics and quotes from historians, politicians and other observers, Walter's heavily footnoted text may prove somewhat slow going for the general reader, but she has uncovered much eye-opening material. Ages 11-up. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/28/1992
Release date: 10/01/1992
Paperback - 205 pages - 978-0-689-80307-9
Prebound-Sewn - 205 pages - 978-0-606-09622-5
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-7857-7672-7
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