Black History Month: James Meredith by// Savannah Herring


For James Meredith it all began when he was ordered to give up his seat and move to the crowded black section of the train, where he had to stand the rest of the way. From that day forward Meredith vowed to dedicate his life to ensuring equal treatment for African Americans.

Meredith spent his first nine collegiate years enrolled in an all-black university. He applied for an all-white university and was accepted. Although, once the registrar found out his race, the University of Mississippi declined his request.

Meredith filed a lawsuit, but the state ruled against him.

Even though he had been denied, he showed up to register for classes. The entrance was blocked; a riot began to form and was soon put to a stop by the National Guard.

On October 1, 1962 James Meredith was the first black student to attend an all-white University of Mississippi.

In the month of June a march through the South encouraged black voters. During the march Meredith was shot and killed by a white unemployed hardware clerk named Aubrey James.

Counselor Pauletta Stewart mentions how he truly is a man of his word.

“He is definitely a man of his word, and his life shows that he was truly dedicated to equal treatment of African Americans,” Stewart said.

Meredith vowed to ensure equal treatment for African Americans; his actions spoke louder than his words.

Meredith had to receive protection from those who could only see the color of his skin and not the man he truly was.

“A strong intelligent individual who served in the United States Air Force for nine years showing that he loved this country even though it was not showing him the same love back,” Stewart said.”He understood his rights and fought for them all the way to the Supreme Court.

Throughout Meredith’s life he never gave up no matter what hardships were given to him. Although he is not breathing, he is a living legacy all around.


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