An American Insurrection: James Meredith and the Battle of Oxford, Mississippi, 1962 by William DoyleIn 1961, a black veteran named James Meredith applied for admission to the University of Mississippi — and launched a legal revolt against white supremacy in the most segregated state in America. Meredith’s challenge ultimately triggered what Time magazine called “the gravest conflict between federal and state authority since the Civil War,” a crisis that on September 30, 1962, exploded into a chaotic battle between thousands of white civilians and a small corps of federal marshals. To crush the insurrection, President John F. Kennedy ordered a lightning invasion of Mississippi by over 20,000 U.S. combat infantry, paratroopers, military police, and National Guard troops.
Based on years of intensive research, including over 500 interviews, JFK’s White House tapes, and 9,000 pages of FBI files, An American Insurrection is a minute-by-minute account of the crisis. William Doyle offers intimate portraits of the key players, from James Meredith to the segregationist Mississippi Governor Ross Barnett, to President John F. Kennedy and the federal marshals and soldiers who risked their lives to uphold the Constitution. The defeat of the segregationist uprising in Oxford was a turning point in the civil rights struggle, and An American Insurrection brings this largely forgotten event to life in all its drama, stunning detail, and historical importance.
James H. Meredith Facts
His enrollment at the previously all-white school sparked riotsand required the combined forces of the National Guard and the U. Army to enforce a court order. Since that time, Meredith frequently has shocked civil rights backers with his unusual and controversial views on race and politics. These views have led Meredith to forge some surprising alliances in later years, including well-publicized associations with conservative North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms and Louisiana politician David Duke, a former leader of the Ku Klux Klan. Along the way, Meredith repeatedly has proclaimed that he was selected by divine forces to save western civilization from its own self-destructive ways.
In , he became the first African-American student admitted to the segregated University of Mississippi , after the intervention of the federal government, an event that was a major point in the Civil Rights Movement. Inspired by President John F.
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Further Reading on James H. Meredith
He was involved in political advisory committee and also wrote about the social inequality issues. Meredith went to a segregated local high school and after graduation he joined United States Air Force.
As the first black to attend the University of Mississippi, James H. Meredith born scored one of the earliest important victories against segregation in Mississippi. Fiercely independent and keenly intelligent, James Meredith was the great iconoclast of the civil rights movement. As the first black to attend the University of Mississippi, Meredith scored one of the earliest important victories against segregation in Mississippi. At the same time, he remained largely aloof from the established civil rights organizations. I made the decision myself. I paid my own tuition.