Letters from Mississippi


Letters from Mississippi's 1964 “FREEDOM SUMMER”

LETTERS FROM MISSISSIPPI: Reports from Civil Rights Volunteers & Poetry of the 1964 Freedom Summer
Edited by Elizabeth Martínez
ISBN: 978-1-938890-02-4 (paper), $18.95
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5½ x 8¼
400 pages

Elizabeth Martínez is a Chicana writer, activist and teacher. She speaks on racism, multiculturalism, women’s struggles and today’s new movements. In the 1960s and 70s, she worked in the Black civil rights movement and the Chicano movement. She co-founded and currently chairs the Institute for MultiRacial Justice to help build alliances between communities of color. Martínez is the author of six books and numerous articles.

At work in a Freedom School.
“I am so grateful readers have been given this new opportunity to hear the story of Freedom Summer told directly by some of the young people who helped make that extraordinary moment happen. Letters From Mississippi gives us a deeply personal look at one of the Civil Rights Movement’s key moments--and reminds us that change happens because regular people have decided they were willing to fight for it.”

Marian Wright Edelman
President, Children’s Defense Fund

Heather Booth (with guitar) and Fannie Lou Hamer.

Volunteers in Oxford, Ohio, including Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank (second from right in back row).
“For those of us who were in Mississippi decades ago, this volume is a wonderfully evocative reminder of exactly how we felt, thought and worked. For everybody, including us, it’s a profound, vivid account of one of the central issues in American history.”

Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank
“These letters bring to life, sometimes with tears, always with pride, that extraordinary summer when young people from all over the country joined black people in Mississippi in their determined quest for equal rights. Elizabeth Sutherland Martínez, with this volume, makes an invaluable and unique contribution to the history of social struggle in America.”

Howard Zinn, historian

First Oxford orientation session (Pam Jones singing at far left, Annelle Ponder in foreground, Julian Bond at far right, and Karen Kunstler standing between Annelle and Julian).

Civil rights organizations you may want to contact:

Civil Rights Movement Veterans