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Andrew Goodman was born in New York City on 23rd November, 1943. A well-known liberal family whose friends included Alger Hiss and Zero Mostel. While studying at Queens College in New York, Goodman joined the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE)and volunteered to take part in its Freedom Summer campaign.
Goodman was sent to Meridian, Mississippi, and on 21st June, 1964, Schwerner and two of his friends, James Chaney and Michael Schwerner, went to Longdale to visit Mt. Zion Methodist Church, a building that had been fire-bombed by the Ku Klux Klan because it was going to be used as a Freedom School.
On the way back to the CORE office in Meridian, the three men were arrested by Deputy Sheriff Cecil Price. Later that evening they were released from the Neshoba jail only to be stopped again on a rural road where a white mob shot them dead and buried them in a earthen dam.
When Attorney General Robert Kennedy heard that the men were missing, he arranged for Joseph Sullivan of the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) to go to Mississippi to discover what has happened. On 4th August, 1964, FBI agents found the bodies in an earthen dam at Old Jolly Farm.
On 13th October, Ku Klux Klan member, James Jordon, confessed to FBI agents that he witnessed the murders and agreed to co-operate with the investigation. Eventually nineteen men are arrested and charged with violating the civil rights of Goodman, Michael Schwerner, and James Chaney. This included Sheriff Lawrence Rainey and Deputy Sheriff Cecil Price.
On 24th February, 1967, Judge William Cox dismissed seventeen of the nineteen indictments. However, the Supreme Court overruled him and the Mississippi Burning Trial started on 11th October, 1967. The main evidence against the defendants came from James Jordon, who had taken part in the killings. Another man, Horace Barnette had also confessed to the crime but refused to give evidence at the trial.
Jordan claimed that Price had released Goodman, Michael Schwerner and James Chaney at 10.25. but re-arrested them before they were able to cross the border into Lauderdale County. Price then took them to to the deserted Rock Cut Road where he handed them over to the Ku Klux Klan.
On 21st October, 1967, seven of the men were found guilty of conspiring to deprive Goodman, Schwerner and Chaney of their civil rights and sentenced to prison terms ranging from three to ten years. This included James Jordon (4 years) and Cecil Price (6 years) but Sheriff Lawrence Rainey was acquitted.
Civil Rights activists led by Ruth Schwerner-Berner, the former wife of Michael Schwerner and Ben Chaney, the brother of James Chaney, continued to campaign for the men to be charged with murder. Eventually, it was decided to charge Edgar Ray Killen, a Ku Klux Klan member and part-time preacher, with more serious offences related to this case. On June 21, 2005, the forty-first anniversary of the crime, Killen was found guilty of the manslaughter of the three men.
In June 2016, 52 years after the killing of Andrew Goodman, Michael Schwerner and James Chaney, state and federal prosecutors have said that the investigation into the killings is over. Mississippi attorney general Jim Hood said. “The evidence has been degraded by memory over time, and so there are no individuals that are living now that we can make a case on at this point.”
The voice on the line was polite but insistent. The FBI was conducting a nationwide manhunt for three men who had disappeared in Mississippi. My car had been found abandoned in suspicious circumstances in nearby Louisiana. Would I come immediately to explain why, and whether I knew anything about the men? The voice on the line was polite but insistent. Would I come immediately to explain why, and whether I knew anything about the men?
The phone call was unnerving even though I had nothing to hide, and I hastened to obey the summons. Of course I knew that the men had gone missing: the case was rocking America that summer, exactly 40 years ago. America's turbulent civil rights decade was at its height and the missing men were three volunteer activists who had been helping black people stand up for their rights and register to vote in the Deep South's most violent state. They had been arrested by the deputy sheriff of Neshoba county on June 21, held for a few hours, and released after dark. Two days later their burned-out station wagon was discovered on a lonely road, but the men were nowhere to be found.
James Chaney, 21, was a black Mississippian from Meridian, a city in the eastern part of the state. Micky Schwerner, 24, was a Jewish activist from New York City who had spent four months in Meridian, running various civil rights projects. Andrew Goodman, 20, came from an upper-middle-class New York family, and had arrived in Mississippi only the day before he went missing. Their terrible story was later turned into a film, Mississippi Burning.
The three activists had disappeared a few hours after a cavalcade of 200 young people arrived in Mississippi for what was called the Freedom Summer. The term "human shields" was not yet in vogue but that is what we were. The idea was that as outsiders we might shame Mississippi's police and sheriffs into reducing their brutality. With the exception of a handful of foreigners such as myself, the roughly 800 volunteers were American - mostly students from prestigious Ivy League universities and other private colleges. We had to bring $500 for use as bail money in the very probable case of being arrested on trumped-up or minor charges.
There were a few middle-class blacks but the majority were affluent whites, and firm believers in the American dream. In the deep south they were vilified as "outside agitators", as though they had no business to be there. They discovered another America, a society in which they were indeed foreigners. Here was a state where blacks made up 45% of the population but only 6% had managed to overcome the poll taxes, the unfairly administered literacy tests and violent reprisals, just to get on the register to exercise their American right to vote.
Question: Then what happened?
Answer: About that time the Deputy's car came by, said something to the man in the red car, and the Deputy's car, and we took off to follow them.
Question: What deputy are you talking about?
Answer: Cecil Price.
Question: Then what did you do?
Answer: Turned the cars around come back toward highway 19.
Question: Then where did you go?
Answer: Turned left on highway 19 all the way to, oh about 34 miles to this other cut-off road which wasn't a paved highway and then they said somebody had better stay here and watch in case anything happens, 'til the other car comes.
Question: How about the people, uhh, did you pass the red car going?
Answer: Yes sir.
Question: You were going toward Philadelphia?
Answer: Yes sir.
Question: And was anyone in the red car when you passed it?
Answer: This young man and Sharpe were still there.
Question: Now, did any of these people, uhh did they both stay there?
Answer: No sir, Sharpe got in the, I believe he got in the wagon or the other car that was ahead of us, I don't know where he got in the police car or not.
Question: Will you tell the Court and Jury what you heard and what you did?
Answer: Well, I hear a car door slamming, and some loud talking, I couldn't understand or distinguish anybody's voice or anything, and then I heard several shots.
Question: Then what did you do?
Answer: Walked up the road toward where the noise came from.
Question: And what did you see when you walked up the road?
Answer: Just a bunch of men milling and standing around that had been in the two cars ahead of us and someone said, "better pick up these shells." I hollered, "what do you want me to do?"
Question: Then what did you do?
Question: Excuse me, did you see these three boys?
Answer: Yes sir, beside the road.
Question: How were they?
Answer: They were lying down.
Question: Were they dead?
Answer: I presume so, yes sir.
Now, what's the theory of the Government's case? Actually isn't it a theory of this case that here in Mississippi, that there is so much hate and prejudice in Mississippi that we hate all outsiders, and that there is a group of people here in Mississippi so filled with that hate that they conspire together and meet together organize organizations to do away and murder outsiders that come into this State.
Members of the Jury, I know you know what an old scapegoat is. It's nothing but just a billy goat with a bell on it, and they used to bring all of the other innocent animals into the slaughtering house, or the slaughtering pen, and when they get there and they go on with their slaughtering, and that's exactly what Jim Jordan is. But the most miraculous thing about that, I knew the government used that before, they have in years gone by, and all the times I've been engaged in the practice of law I never knew a State of a Government in the presentation of their case to try to blow hot and cold in the same breath. They got in here and they put Jim Jordan on the stand and he sat up there with his eyes all bugged out and he just rattles it off like that, just exactly what happened, he said. Then, the government, just a little bit later, brings statement and say you ought to convict somebody on which impeaches almost everything he said. I just don't see how the government can have so many theories of these cases and then represent to you there's no reasonable doubts, there's no mistake.
Buford Posey was stunned when he picked up the March 13 copy of the Neshoba Democrat, a local newspaper. Prominently featured was a photo of the newly sworn-in officers of the Neshoba County Shriners club. Among the men in the photo was Cecil Price who had just taken the oath as the Shriners' vice president.
"Cecil Price was the chief deputy sheriff of Neshoba County in 1964," Posey told the People's Weekly World in an exclusive interview. "He led the Ku Klux Klan that lynched Michael Schwerner, James Chaney and Andrew Goodman on Sunday night, June 21, 1964.I have tried without success to get Mississippi newspapers to comment on this outrage of Cecil Price being elected as a high-ranking Masonic leader," Posey said.
Although Posey comes from a prominent Mississippi family, he was active in the civil rights movement in the early '60s. He will tell you, with not a little bit of pride in his voice, that he was the first white person in Mississippi to join the NAACP. He now lives in Oxford, where he receives a small disability pension.
Posey said that the FBI knew who murdered the civil rights workers within hours of the grisly event. "In those days I was in Neshoba County, where I was born and raised. Though I traveled around a lot, I had been at my father's in Philadelphia because he was dying of prostate cancer," Posey said.
"The murders took place on a Sunday night, June 21, 1964 on Rock Cut Road, right off Highway 19. I was sitting home that night. It was late, 2 o'clock or something like that, and I received a call. I recognized the voice at once." The caller was Edgar Ray Killen, the "chaplain" of the White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. "We took care of your three friends tonight and you're next," Killen told Posey.
Posey had gone to Meridian the week before and talked to Schwerner, the oldest of the three murdered workers. "I told them to be careful. 'The Klan has sentenced you to death. You know the sheriffs up there, Lawrence Rainey and Cecil Ray Price, are Klan members.'"
The morning after the call from Killen, Posey contacted the FBI, first in Jackson and then New Orleans. "I told them I was a civil rights worker, who I worked for and what had happened. I told them the preachers' name and that I thought the sheriff's office was involved in the murder."
Though the FBI ignored Posey, a chain of events was soon set in motion that led to the discovery of the bodies and another three years later, the conviction of Neshoba County Sheriff Lawrence Rainey, Price and five others on federal charges of violating the civil rights of the three murdered men.
Posey had talked to newspaper columnist Drew Pearson who was a friend of President Lyndon Johnson. Johnson and the "big news organizations," according to Posey, started to put the pressure on.
Mississippi never brought state charges against any of the Klansmen who committed these crimes. Posey thinks there's a reason for that. "When I was coming up most of the white people in Mississippi didn't know it was against the law to murder a Black person," he said. He recalled an incident he witnessed as a child that shaped his thinking on the genocidal cruelty of racism.
"I was in Philadelphia one Saturday afternoon - in the olden days people came to town on Saturday - they were share croppers and the like. Well, to make a long story short, there was this Black teenager. There was this white woman who came out of a store right there on Court Square." The teen accidentally bumped into her. The woman started screaming.
"Well, some men went into Johnson's hardware store and took out some shotguns," Posey said. "They chased the poor young fellow around Court Square, shooting at him. They killed him and chained him to the flag pole."
In 1994 hundreds of veteran civil rights workers gathered in Jackson to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Freedom Summer. Among those attending the conference were Rita Schwerner, widow of Michael Schwerner, and Carolyn Goodman, mother of Andrew Goodman.
A political firestorm was set off when Dick Molphus, then a Democratic candidate for governor, apologized to Carolyn Goodman. Gov. Kirk Fordice rebuked Molphus, saying it did no good to drag up the past. Posey believes this provided the incentive for Neshoba County to "rehabilitate" Cecil Price.
The rededication of the grave site of James Chaney in nearby Meridian was the emotional highlight of the Mississippi homecoming. Chaney's brother, Ben, had a warning for civil rights veterans who had come to honor the three martyrs.
"There are a lot of good people in Mississippi," he said. "But there are still some who haven't learned the lessons of the past. There are still people in Mississippi who don't want my brother to rest in peace."
Chaney told the World that gunshots from a high-powered rifle had been fired into his brother's gravestone. At least one attempt had been made to dig up and steal the body.
Rev. Charles Johnson, who was a government witness in the federal trial of Chaney's murderers, sounded a more optimistic note. "These three men shed their blood in the state of Mississippi and because of them we have the Voting Rights Act. Because of them we have more elected Black officials in Mississippi than in any other state."
Johnson said, "In this state, hatred flowed like a river. Where hatred rolled, freedom and love now flow. We have to get to the young people and let them know what Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman did for them."
It was 41 years ago today that Mickey Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and Michael Chaney headed to Philadelphia to help some local blacks who had been beaten by the Klan and whose church had been burned. Today, we know that they were lured here to die....
When we had left here Monday night, we were a bit apprehensive that Killen would be acquitted. The jury’s forewoman had announced a 6-6 split. There’s no way to know yet, but on reflection today, it could have been 6 guilty for murder and 6 guilty for manslaughter. That makes more sense in the light of today’s pronouncements.
So, there I sat in the courtroom. Mickey Schwerner’s widow Rita Bender was within my sight as she waited anxiously on the front row on the left side of the courtroom. Killen’s family looked concerned on the right side.
Security was extensive around and within the Neshoba County courthouse. I saw men with rifles entering about 7 a.m. and the entire Philadelphia Swat team assembled nearby. Dozens of Highway Patrolmen were stationed at the doorways and within the courtroom. Just before the sentence was pronounced, the most muscular of the patrolmen came forward in the aisles to discourage any members of the public from doing anything inappropriate upon hearing Killen’s fate.
The jury was escorted in and lined up in a semicircle in front of the judge’s bench. Gordon asked if they had reached a verdict. They had, said the forewoman. Hand me the verdicts, Gordon said, then he read each carefully. He polled each one to determine if these verdicts were their own. Yes, each said. Then clerk Lee read the verdicts: guilty of manslaughter, guilty of manslaughter and guilty of manslaughter.
A collective sigh came from many onlookers, who had been admonished to behave when the verdicts were read. “The court appreciates your attention and services,” Gordon said to jurors just before they were dismissed and escorted to their vehicles. No one else moved or could move in the courtroom.
Killen’s white-haired wife rose from her seat near the front row and put her arms around him as he sat impassively in his wheelchair. At 11:26, Gordon said, “Edgar Ray Killen, a jury has found you guilty.” The judge committed him to the custody of the sheriff and Killen was wheeled from the courtroom. As Mrs. Killen sat back in her seat, the people on each side of her embraced her and each put an arm around her quavering shoulders...
After the verdict, the Media Center hosted a massive news conference, live on CNN and other media outlets. First to the microphone was Rita Schwerner Bender, then Ben Chaney, younger brother of James Chaney. I wish I could tell you exactly what they said, but I was busy trying to make sure things were moving along technically. When they completed lengthy remarks and thanks, they were followed by Attorney General Jim Hood of Houston and local District Attorney Mark Duncan. Hood and Duncan spent a lot of time at the mic talking about the trial, how difficult its preparation had been and about information they had that never got into testimony. Duncan would not say if any others could be tried in this crime.
Also making remarks were members of the Philadelphia Coalition, a local group of whites and blacks who had pressed hard for Killen’s indictment. Their faces told the story of how proud they felt of the trial’s conclusion.
I’m seeking to wind down the Media Center in hopes of getting back to the job I signed on for almost two years ago – at the Daily Journal. Thanks to Lloyd Gray and Mike Tonos for allowing me to do this. It has been an unforgettable experience I got to share with my son, a Meridian reporter headed for Ole Miss law school this fall. We’ll always be able to share this. It was a moment, but it was an important one because hopefully it has lifted the stigma of “Mississippi Burning” from our good state.
A Mississippi jury convicted former Ku Klux Klan leader Edgar Ray Killen of manslaughter Tuesday, 41 years after the murder of three civil rights workers, including two from New York City.
The jury of nine whites and three blacks reached the verdict on their second day of deliberations, rejecting murder charges against the 80-year-old defendant.
Killen sat motionless as the verdict was read and was later comforted by his wife as he sat in his wheelchair, attached to an oxygen tube.
Civil rights workers James Chaney and New Yorkers Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman were ambushed on June 21, 1964. Their bodies were found 44 days later. They had been beaten and shot.
Here in New York, Goodman's mother told NY1 the verdict is one she has been waiting for ever since her son was killed.
"This is something I was hoping would happen," said Carolyn Goodman in a statement. "I have waited 40 years for this. I hope this man will pay for his crimes and know what he did."
Killen, who was a part-time preacher and sawmill operator, was tried in 1967 on federal charges of violating the victims' civil rights. But the all-white jury deadlocked, with one juror saying she could not convict a preacher.
Seven others were convicted, but none served more than six years.
Killen was indicted on murder charges this time around, which could have carried a life sentence, but the defense appealed to the jury to lessen the conviction to manslaughter charges. Killen now faces a maximum of 20 years in prison on each of the three counts.
The conviction comes exactly 41 years to the day after the three civil rights workers disappeared.
Exactly 41 years to the day after three young civil rights activists disappeared in Mississippi, Edgar Ray Killen, a Ku Klux Klan member and part-time preacher, yesterday became the first person convicted over their killing.
The jury found the 80-year-old guilty of manslaughter in the deaths of James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, who were ambushed, beaten, and shot while working to promote black voting rights during the "freedom summer" of 1964.
Although the jury rejected the more serious murder charges against the former Klan leader, Killen could still face 20 years in prison for his part in the killings, which inspired the 1988 film Mississippi Burning. He will be sentenced tomorrow, Killen, wearing an oxygen mask and in a wheelchair since breaking both legs during a logging accident, showed no emotion as the verdict was read out.
Schwerner's widow, Rita Schwerner Bender, welcomed the verdict, calling it "a day of great importance to all of us". But she said others also should be held responsible for the murders. "Preacher Killen didn't act in a vacuum," she said. There are believed to be seven more men involved who are still alive.
The three victims - Chaney, a black activist from Mississippi, and Schwerner and Goodman, white activists from New York - were picked up by a local policeman after they visited the ruins of a black church burned down by the Klan the previous week. The men were released in the middle of the night, but the policeman, a Klan member, had tipped off local Klansmen and they were chased down in their car by a mob, who shot and then buried them. Their bodies were found 44 days later.
In 1967, 18 men, including Killen, were tried on conspiracy charges. Seven were convicted, but none served more than six years in prison. Killen walked free as a result of a hung jury.
The conviction of Edgar Ray Killen for the manslaughter of three civil rights workers has a symbolic significance that goes beyond the families of those who died 41 years ago.
At stake was not just how Killen would spend his fading years, but whether Mississippi - a state Martin Luther King described as "sweltering in injustice" in his "I have a dream" speech - could, and should, address its segregationist past...
Mark Duncan, the prosecuting district attorney countered: "There is only one question. Is a Neshoba county jury going to tell the rest of the world that we are not going to let Edgar Ray Killen get away with murder anymore? Not one day more."
Most of the evidence presented at the trial has been known for 40 years. "It wasn't like there was any one thing that happened that said, 'Here's the magic bullet'," Mr. Duncan told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. "It really was that we had gotten to the end. There was nothing to do."
But as the defendants and the witnesses got older, there was a fear that Killen might die and take Mississippi's reputation down with him. For some this was a race against time to show that the potency of race in the former Confederacy had been extinguished.
Killen's manslaughter conviction, like the conviction of 22 others for civil rights-era killings in the past 16 years, was part of a push to show that the goods, as well as the packaging, had changed...
According to a census report from 2002, the top five residentially segregated metropolitan areas in the US are Milwaukee, Detroit, Cleveland, St Louis and Newark - none of which is in the south. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, you will find higher rates of black poverty in the northern states of Wisconsin, Illinois and West Virginia than in Mississippi.
The only difference between the north and the south, wrote the late James Baldwin, was that "the north promised more. And (there was only) this similarity: what it promised it did not give and what it gave, at length and grudgingly with one hand, it took back with the other."
Nonetheless, if much has changed, much has remained the same. Indeed the Klan still march in town every year, and during the trial Harlan Majure, the mayor of Philadelphia during the 1990s, said he had no problem with the Ku Klux Klan. Mr Majure told the jury the Klan "did a lot of good up here", and claimed that he was not personally aware of the organisation's bloody past.
African Americans in the state remain at a huge disadvantage. Infant mortality rates are twice as high, earnings are half as much as whites, and black people are three times as likely to live in poverty. The state has the lowest wages and highest infant mortality rates and poverty in the country....
And last night Ben Chaney, the brother of one of the victims, James Chaney, a black Mississippian, thanked "the white people who walked up to me and said things are changing. I think there's hope."
In the 40 years since he killed the three young civil rights workers, Edgar Ray Killen has remained unrepentant. He told the New York Times six years ago the ex-Klansman branded his victims "communists" who were threatening Mississippi's way of life. "I'm sorry they got themselves killed" was all the remorse he could muster.
That way of life denied black people the vote, kept races separate and unequal and that's how he liked it.
Both reclusive and notorious, he ran a sawmill and lived with his wife in a small house with a tablet displaying the Ten Commandments on his lawn.
Until the trial opened last week he denied he had any involvement in the Klan, although those in the town said his involvement was always an open secret. "Killen was one of those rednecks," says 89-year-old Buford Posey. "I know ... I was one of those rednecks."
Investigators always insisted he was the leader of the mob that night.
Howard Ball, a civil rights worker who wrote Murder in Mississippi: United States v. Price and the Struggle for Civil Rights, described the preacher as "the mastermind".
"He got the gloves, he got the backhoe operator, he was able to work with (a local landowner) to get the site of the burial," Ball told the Los Angeles Times. "If there is one person, it should be him."
One day short of the 52nd anniversary of the disappearance of three civil rights workers during Mississippi’s “Freedom Summer,” state and federal prosecutors have said that the investigation into the killings is over.
The decision “closes a chapter” in the state’s divisive civil rights history, Mississippi attorney general Jim Hood said.
“The evidence has been degraded by memory over time, and so there are no individuals that are living now that we can make a case on at this point,” Hood said.
He said, however, that if new information comes forward because of the announcement that the case is closed, prosecutors could reconsider and pursue a case.
The 1964 killings of James Earl Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner in Neshoba County sparked national outrage and helped spur passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. They later became the subject of the film “Mississippi Burning.”
On Monday, their relatives said the focus should not be only on the three men, but on all the people killed or hurt while seeking justice.
“The civil rights period was not about just those three young men,” said the reverend Julia Chaney Moss, Chaney’s sister. “It was about all of the lives.”
Andrew Goodman - History
(November 23,1943 - June 21, 1964)
Andrew Goodman was born and raised in New York City , one of three sons of Robert and Carolyn Goodman, in an intellectual and socially-aware family. An activist from the age of 15, he graduated from the progressive Walden School there. He then attended the University of Wisconsin for a year before transferring to Queens College, New York City , where he was a classmate of Paul Simon . With his brief experience as an off-Broadway actor, he originally planned to study drama, but switched to anthropology.
Goodman was intelligent, unassuming, happy, and outgoing. He grew up as the second of three sons in a liberal household on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Goodman attended the progressive Walden School, widely known for its anti-authoritarian approach to learning. While a high school sophomore at Walden, Goodman traveled to Washington, D. C. to participate in the "Youth March for Integrated Schools." As a senior, he and a classmate visited a depressed coal mining region in West Virginia to prepare a report on poverty in America.
After graduating from Walden, Goodman enrolled at Queens College in part because of its strong drama department. Soon, however, his longing for commitment led him away from his interest in drama and back to politics. In April 1964, Goodman applied for and was accepted into the Mississippi Summer Project. Although not seeing himself as a professional reformer, Goodman knew that his life had been somewhat sheltered and thought that the experience would be educational and useful.
He volunteered, along with fellow activist Mickey Schwerner , to work as part of the "Freedom Summer" project to register blacks to vote in Mississippi . Having protested U.S. President Lyndon Johnson's presence at the opening of that year's World's Fair, Goodman then left with Schwerner to develop civil rights protest strategies at Western College for Women [now part of Miami University ] in Oxford, Ohio . In mid-June, Goodman and Schwerner were then sent to Mississippi and began registering blacks to vote.
On the night of June 20 , 1964 the two reached Meridian. There, they were joined by a black man named James Chaney , who himself was a civil rights activist. On the morning of June 21 , 1964 the three of them set out for Philadelphia , Neshoba County , where they were to investigate the recent burning of a local black church, the Mount Zion Methodist Church .
The three (Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman) were initially arrested by Deputy Sheriff Cecil Price for allegedly driving 35 miles over the 30 mile per hour speed limit. The trio was taken to the jail in Neshoba County where Chaney was booked for speeding, while Schwerner and Goodman were booked "for investigation."
After Chaney was fined $20, the three men were released and told to leave the county. Price followed them on state route 19 to the county line, then turned around at approximately 10:30 p.m. On their way back to Meridian, they were stopped by two carloads of KKK members on a remote rural road. The men approached their car and then shot and killed Schwerner, followed by Goodman, and finally Chaney.
Eventually, the Neshoba County deputy sheriff and conspirators were convicted by Federal prosecutors of civil rights violations, but were never convicted of murder. The case formed the basis of the made-for-TV movie Attack on Terror: The FBI vs. the Kuk Klux Klan and the feature film Mississippi Burning .
On September 14 , 2004 the Mississippi State Attorney General Jim Hood announced that he was gathering evidence for a charge of murder and intended to take the case to a grand jury . On January 7 , 2005 , Edgar Ray Killen was arrested and found guilty of manslaughter - not murder - on June 21 , 2005 , exactly 41 years to the day after the murders.
Goodman Mountain, a 2,176 foot peak in the Adirondack Mountain town of Tupper Lake , NY, where he and his family spent their summers, is named in Andrew Goodman's memory. "Those Three are On My Mind" ( Pete Seeger ) was written to commemorate the three victims, and the Simon & Garfunkel song "He Was My Brother" was dedicated to Goodman.
After their return to Meridian, the three activists were arrested by Deputy Sheriff Cecil Price, who was a member of the KKK. They were accused of speeding- driving 35 miles over the 20-miles-per-hour limit. They were taken to jail in Neshoba County, where the driver Chaney was booked for speeding, while the other two-for investigation. Chaney was fined 20 dollars and they were released.
Sherriff Price ordered the three men to leave the county and followed them in his car. He caught up with them before the trio were able to enter the safety of Lauderdale County. Price took them into his car and drove them to a deserted area on Rock Cut Road. He was also followed by two cars of other members of the Klan. They were turned into the hands of Klansmen and beat Chaney up, afterward shooting and killing all three of them.
After the three men disappeared, FBI entered the investigation of the case. They found the three men buried in a dam. The case was prosecuted under the 1870 Force Act, convicting the deputy sheriff and six other men of civil rights violations. They were not convicted of murder.
3. He is currently 77 years old
The American civil rights leader has been alive for 28,344 days days or 680,263 hours hours. There were precisely 961 full moons after his birth to this day.
|BORN:||November 23, 1943|
|AGE:||77 years old|
|GENERATION:||Baby Boomers Generation|
Andrew Goodman was born on a Tuesday. People born on Tuesdays come with a fiery, fighting spirit. They are brave, impatient, energetic, active, and driven to succeed, sometimes to a fault.
Countdown to Andrew Goodman’s next birthday.
Andrew Goodman will be turning 78.
This day in history, June 21: Civil rights workers Michael H. Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James E. Chaney slain in Philadelphia, Mississippi
Today is Monday, June 21, the 172nd day of 2021. There are 193 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 21, 1964, civil rights workers Michael H. Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James E. Chaney were slain in Philadelphia, Mississippi their bodies were found buried in an earthen dam six weeks later. (Forty-one years later on this date in 2005, Edgar Ray Killen, an 80-year-old former Ku Klux Klansman, was found guilty of manslaughter he was sentenced to 60 years in prison, where he died in January 2018.)
In 1788, the United States Constitution went into effect as New Hampshire became the ninth state to ratify it.
In 1942, German forces led by Generaloberst (Colonel General) Erwin Rommel captured the Libyan city of Tobruk during World War II. (Rommel was promoted to the rank of Field Marshal Tobruk was retaken by the Allies in November 1942.)
In 1943, Army nurse Lt. Edith Greenwood became the first woman to receive the Soldier’s Medal for showing heroism during a fire at a military hospital in Yuma, Arizona.
In 1954, the American Cancer Society presented a study to the American Medical Association meeting in San Francisco which found that men who regularly smoked cigarettes died at a considerably higher rate than non-smokers.
In 1963, Cardinal Giovanni Battista Montini was chosen during a conclave of his fellow cardinals to succeed the late Pope John XXIII the new pope took the name Paul VI.
In 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Miller v. California, ruled that states may ban materials found to be obscene according to local standards.
In 1977, Menachem Begin (men-AH’-kem BAY’-gihn) of the Likud bloc became Israel’s sixth prime minister.
In 1982, a jury in Washington, D.C. found John Hinckley Jr. not guilty by reason of insanity in the shootings of President Ronald Reagan and three other men.
In 1989, a sharply divided Supreme Court ruled that burning the American flag as a form of political protest was protected by the First Amendment.
In 1997, the WNBA made its debut as the New York Liberty defeated the host Los Angeles Sparks 67-57.
In 2002, one of the worst wildfires in Arizona history grew to 128,000 acres, forcing thousands of homeowners near the community of Show Low to flee.
In 2010, Faisal Shahzad (FY’-sul shah-ZAHD’), a Pakistan-born U.S. citizen, pleaded guilty to charges of plotting a failed car bombing in New York’s Times Square. (Shahzad was later sentenced to life in prison.)
Ten years ago: The Food and Drug Administration announced that cigarette packs in the U.S. would have to carry macabre images that included rotting teeth and gums, diseased lungs and a sewn-up corpse of a smoker as part of a graphic campaign aimed at discouraging Americans from lighting up. Amid street protests, Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou survived a confidence vote.
Five years ago: Hillary Clinton, during a visit to the battleground state of Ohio, said Donald Trump would send the U.S. economy back into recession, warning that his “reckless” approach would hurt workers still trying to recover from the 2008 economic turbulence. North Korea fired two suspected powerful new Musudan midrange ballistic missiles, according to U.S. and South Korean military officials, the communist regime’s fifth and sixth such attempts since April 2016. The Obama administration approved routine commercial use of small drones in areas such as farming, advertising and real estate after years of struggling to write rules to protect public safety.
One year ago: An initially peaceful protest in Portland, Oregon, against racial injustice turned violent, as police used flash-bang grenades to disperse demonstrators throwing bottles, cans and rocks at sheriff’s deputies. Spectators in Raleigh, North Carolina, cheered as work crews finished the job started by protesters and removed a Confederate statue from atop a 75-foot monument. NASCAR said a rope shaped like a noose had been found in the garage stall of Bubba Wallace, the only full-time Black driver in NASCAR’s elite Cup Series, at a race in Talladega, Alabama. (Federal authorities found that the rope had been hanging there for months, and that it was not a hate crime.) New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said the American Museum of Natural History would remove from its entrance a statue depicting Theodore Roosevelt on horseback with a Native American man and an African man standing alongside critics said it symbolized colonial expansion and racial discrimination.
Today’s birthdays: Composer Lalo Schifrin is 89. Actor Bernie Kopell is 88. Actor Monte Markham is 86. Songwriter Don Black is 83. Actor Mariette Hartley is 81. Comedian Joe Flaherty is 80. Rock singer-musician Ray Davies (The Kinks) is 77. Actor Meredith Baxter is 74. Actor Michael Gross (Baxter’s co-star on the sitcom “Family Ties”) is 74. Rock musician Joe Molland (Badfinger) is 74. Rock musician Don Airey (Deep Purple) is 73. Rock musician Joey Kramer (Aerosmith) is 71. Rock musician Nils Lofgren is 70. Actor Robyn Douglass is 69. Actor Leigh McCloskey is 66. Cartoonist Berke Breathed is 64. Actor Josh Pais is 63. Country singer Kathy Mattea is 62. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is 61. Actor Marc Copage (koh-PAJ’) is 59. Actor Sammi Davis is 57. Actor Doug Savant is 57. Country musician Porter Howell is 57. Actor Michael Dolan is 56. Writer-director Lana Wachowski is 56. Actor Carrie Preston is 54. Actor Paula Irvine is 53. Rapper/producer Pete Rock is 51. Country singer Allison Moorer is 49. Actor Juliette Lewis is 48. Actor Maggie Siff is 47. Musician Justin Cary is 46. Rock musician Mike Einziger (Incubus) is 45. Actor Chris Pratt is 42. Rock singer Brandon Flowers is 40. Britain’s Prince William is 39. Actor Jussie Smollett is 39. Actor Benjamin Walker is 39. Actor Michael Malarkey is 38. Pop singer Kris Allen (TV: “American Idol”) is 36. Pop/rock singer Lana Del Rey is 36. Actor Jascha Washington is 32. Country musician Chandler Baldwin (LANCO) is 29. Pop singer Rebecca Black is 24.
Journalism, it’s often said, is the first-draft of history. Check back each day for what’s new … and old.
Little Known Black History Fact: Chaney, Goodman, Schwerner Murders
One of the most harrowing events to occur during the civil rights movement took place on this day in 1964. Three activists connected with the CORE organization were arrested and later killed in what has been alleged as a planned attack by the Ku Klux Klan.
The brave young activists from the Congress of Racial Equality, the SNCC and other related civil rights groups launched the Freedom Summer campaign, also known as the Mississippi Summer Project. The campaign was made up of mostly Black Mississippi natives and over 1,000 mostly white volunteers from around the United States. The activists faced abuse and death threats from locals and the Ku Klux Klan alike.
James Chaney, a Black Mississippi man who worked with CORE, along with Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, white Jewish men from New York, were arrested June 21, 1964 by Neshoba County deputy Sheriff and KKK member Cecil Price. The men were investigating a recent church burning that was reportedly carried out by the KKK when Price locked them up on trumped-up charges.
Schwerner was already a target of the KKK and they reportedly concocted a plan to murder him in May of that year known as “Plan 4.” The group mistakenly thought Schwerner would be in attendance at the local Mount Zion Church and torched the structure on June 16. When Schwerner heard of the acts while away in Ohio, he vowed to look into the matter.
After being held all day, the men were released but were ambushed by KKK members. Schwerner and Goodman were shot point-blank. Chaney was beaten and tortured before he was eventually shot to death. Their bodies weren’t found until that August.
The FBI arrested 18 men in October of that year, after state prosecutors refused to try the case based on lack of evidence. Price was among those arrested. In 1967, seven men were convicted of federal conspiracy charges but none of them faced trial for murder. No one in the group served more than six years.
In 2005, Edgar Ray Killen was convicted of three counts of manslaughter. On June 20, 2016, after three investigations by the Department of Justice over 50 years, the state announced that it was closing the case, ending the chapter on one of the movement’s most tragic events.
In a statement, the Department of Justice said:
Mississippi Attorney General Hood has determined that despite one of the most intensely investigated and documented underlying investigations of any racially-motivated murder during the 1960s, followed by the exhaustive efforts of more recent reinvestigations, the passage of time has simply rendered additional prosecutions impossible. While legal and factual impediments sometimes prevent us from bringing cases we wish that we could, the Civil Rights Division remains dedicated to pursuing racially-motivated crimes wherever the facts allow.
“Chaney, Goodman and Schwerner gave their lives while struggling to advance the cause of civil rights for all. Though the reinvestigation into their heinous deaths has formally closed, we must all honor their legacy by forging ahead and continuing the fight to ensure that the founding promise of America is true for all of its inhabitants.”
President Barack Obama awarded Chaney, Schwerner, and Goodman with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2014.
Dolomite looks back on a long history since its foundation back in 1897. Like many others it entered the sustainability path a while ago, but since this year took a new step by creating its own sustainability program and labeling. We asked Andrew Goodman, Dolomite&rsquos CSR manager, how &ldquoRe-source by Dolomite&rdquo works and what the goals are.
What exactly is Re-Source by Dolomite all about?
Re-source by Dolomite is the name given to our CSR program. This program is one of the newer ones of our organization although it is something that we have always been working on. However, we felt that our stakeholders expected us to provide them with more insight and understanding of the work we do at Dolomite. Our CSR program is focused on three pillars, which are People, Planet and Product.
When we mention People, we consider that all people involved along our supply chain should be treated fairly and with dignity and respect when we mention the Planet, we take into consideration that the Earth&rsquos resources must be used in such a way that the eco-systems and future generations should not be adversely affected and finally when we mention Product, we aim to maximize the sustainable nature of our products while still maintaining their level of performance through R&D, new technologies and design.
As part of the Re-source by Dolomite program, we decided to provide a way to show to our stakeholders which of our products were our most eco-responsible ones, and thus we affixed our Re-source by Dolomite label on the products that met our sustainable material criteria. For our apparel collection, the criteria are that a product must be made of either 100% certified renewable material or a minimum of 50% certified recycled material and if there is a durable water repellence (DWR), it must be PFC-free. On our footwear collection, our more sustainable products must have either a certified renewable or recycled upper, the soles and midsoles must contain recycled or bio-based contents, and finally the other components such as laces and footbed must be of recycled or bio-based sources.
There are already many independent certificates&ndashwhy is Dolomite introducing its own? Wouldn&rsquot an independent certificate be more credible?
Yes, that&rsquos correct. There are already thousands of independent certificates existing and because of that it is very confusing for everybody to know what is truly better and what the certificates cover. Re-source by Dolomite is an on-product label, not a certificate. However, for a product to be considered for our eco-responsible label, it must have independent certification/test reports/documentations that support its material claim. By having our own on-product sustainability label, we make it simpler for our customers to be able to select a more eco-responsible product without having to know about all the different existing independent certificates. The Re-source by Dolomite label is a show of our commitment to produce and source more sustainable products.
On the upstream side, we do our homework ensuring that the certificates we consider to be more sustainable are truly so. This means a lot of research and internal discussion before we vet an independent certificate and, once we do, we request all the supporting certificate/test reports/documentation to make sure that what we are claiming from a material sustainability perspective is actually accurate. If we are unable to collect all this information, we do not claim that our product is more sustainable.
What standards does Re-Source follow, what is the benchmark?
The basic guidelines are that material sources must be from certified renewable, recycled or bio-based sources, and that these certificates must come from verifiable and independent sources. Our on-product sustainability criteria for Re-source by Dolomite are not meant to be fixed and unchanging but will be adapted and revised as sustainability topics important to our stakeholders and customers change. This first iteration allows us to set our benchmark as to what we consider to be a more sustainable product and we inspired ourselves by looking at what other industry members were doing. Once a good portion of our products is labeled Re-source by Dolomite, it does not mean we have finished our work. We will adapt our Re-source by Dolomite label to the version 2.0 that will have stricter criteria and be our next step in providing more sustainable products.
What are Dolomite's concrete goals for sustainable production in the coming years?
In the coming seasons, we plan on continuing to gather internal know-how and expertise on the topic by partnering with industry and other stakeholder groups on increasing our proposal of Re-source by Dolomite labeled products season by season and on re-evaluating every season what it is we have achieved and where we want to take the Re-source by Dolomite program next. These are but the first steps and the process of incorporating sustainability into every aspect of our business practices and products is a long journey filled with much learning. It is something we are committed to and we are looking forward to the sharing our learning and experiences with everyone along the way on our CSR webpage.
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For the purposes of a bibliography entry or footnote, follow this model:
Wisconsin Historical Society Citation Wisconsin Historical Society, Creator, Title, Image ID. Viewed online at (copy and paste image page link). Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research Citation Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research, Creator, Title, Image ID. Viewed online at (copy and paste image page link).
The Lasting Impact of a Civil Rights Icon’s Murder
In the 44 days that his brother and two other young civil rights workers were missing in Neshoba County, Mississippi, 12-year-old Ben Chaney was quiet and withdrawn. He kept his mother constantly in sight as she obsessively cleaned their house, weeping all the while.
Bill Eppridge, a Life magazine photographer, arrived in Neshoba County shortly after the bodies of James Chaney, Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman were pulled from the muck of an earthen dam on August 4, 1964. Inside the Chaney home in nearby Meridian, Eppridge felt that Ben was overwhelmed, "not knowing where he was or where he should have been," he recalls. "That draws you to somebody, because you wonder what is going on there."
On August 7, Eppridge watched as the Chaney family left to bury their eldest son. As they awaited a driver, Fannie Lee Chaney and her husband, Ben Sr., sat in the front seat of a sedan their daughters, Barbara, Janice and Julia, sat in the back with Ben, who hunched forward so he'd fit.
Eppridge took three frames. As he did so, he could see Ben's bewilderment harden into a cold stare directed right at the lens. "There were a dozen questions in that look," Eppridge says. "As they left, he looked at me and said, three times, 'I'm gonna kill 'em, I'm gonna kill 'em, I'm gonna kill 'em.' "
The frames went unpublished that year in Life most news photographs of the event showed a sobbing Ben Chaney Jr. inside the church. The one on this page is included in "Road to Freedom," a photography exhibit organized by Atlanta's High Museum and on view through March 9 at the Smithsonian's S. Dillon Ripley Center in Washington, D.C., presented by the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Chaney, now 56, cannot recall what he told Eppridge in 1964, but he remembers being livid that his mother had to suffer and that his father's generation had not risen up years before so that his brother's generation wouldn't have had to. "I know I was angry," he says.
Ben had lost his idol. Nine years older, James Earl Chaney—J.E., Ben called him—had bought Ben his first football uniform and taken him for haircuts. He had taken Ben along as he organized prospective black voters in the days leading to Freedom Summer. Ben, who had been taken into custody himself for demonstrating for civil rights, recalls J.E. walking down the jailhouse corridor to secure his release, calling, "Where's my brother? "
"He treated me," Ben says, "like I was a hero."
After the funeral, a series of threats drove the Chaneys from Mississippi. With help from the Schwerners, Goodmans and others, they moved to New York City. Ben enrolled in a private, majority-white school and adjusted to life in the North. But by 1969 he was restless. In Harlem, he says, he was elated to see black people running their own businesses and determining their own fates. He joined the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army.
In May 1970, two months shy of 18, Chaney and two other young men drove to Florida with a vague plan to buy guns. Soon, five people, including one of their number, were dead in Florida and South Carolina.
Chaney said he didn't even witness any of the slayings. He was acquitted of murder in South Carolina. But in Florida—where the law allows for murder charges to be brought in crimes that result in death—he was convicted of murder in the first degree and sentenced to three life terms.
One of his first visitors in jail was Bill Eppridge. Before setting up his cameras, Eppridge fired off a quick Polaroid. His editor liked the Polaroid best. Life readers saw Ben Chaney with his eyes framed by prison bars. "He just looks scared," says Eppridge, who, after the weekly Life folded in 1972, went to work for Sports Illustrated.
"I can imagine I was afraid," Chaney says. "I was in jail."
He served 13 years. Paroled in 1983, he started the James Earl Chaney Foundation to clean up his brother's vandalized grave site in Meridian since 1985, he has worked as a legal clerk for former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, the lawyer who secured his parole. He envisions creating a Chaney, Goodman, Schwerner Center for Human Rights in Meridian.
In 1967, eighteen men faced federal charges of civil rights violations in the slayings of Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman. Seven were convicted by an all-white jury, eight were acquitted and three were released after jurors deadlocked. The state of Mississippi prosecuted no one for 38 years. But in 2005—after six years of new reporting on the case by Jerry Mitchell of the Jackson Clarion-Ledger—a sawmill operator named Edgar Ray Killen was indicted on charges of murder.
On June 21, 2005, exactly 41 years after the three men were killed, a racially integrated jury, without clear evidence of Killen's intent, found him guilty of manslaughter instead. Serving three consecutive 20-year terms, he is the only one of six living suspects to face state charges in the case.
Ben Chaney sees it this way: somewhere out there are men like him—accomplices to murder. He did his time, he says, they should do theirs. "I'm not as sad as I was," he adds. "But I'm still angry."
Hank Klibanoff is the author, with Gene Roberts, of The Race Beat, which received the Pulitzer Prize for history last year.