Southern Christian Leadership Conference

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Southern Christian Leadership Conference

Background

"In the constellation of forces that comprised the civil rights movement, SCLC became, in the words of veteran black activist Bayard Rustin, the 'sustaining mechanism' and 'dynamic center.'"[1]

Prominent members

Ella J. Baker and her fellow African-American civil-rights activist Bayard Rustin introduced secret Communist Party USA member Stanley Levison to to Martin Luther King, Jr. A special relationship developed; from the late 1950s until King's death, in 1968, it was without a doubt King's closest friendship with a white person. In December of 1956 and January of 1957 Levison served as Rustin's primary sounding board as Rustin drew up the founding-agenda documents for what came to be called the Southern Christian Leadership Conference[2].

Like Rustin, Levison, and Baker, King and a network of his southern African-American ministerial colleagues hoped that the SCLC could leverage the success of the Montgomery bus boycott into a South-wide attack on segregation and racial discrimination.

Harry Boyte, a white North Carolinian joined SCLC in October of 1963 as an assistant to Martin Luther King, Jr.[3]

External links

References

  1. Fairclough, Adam. To Redeem the Soul of America. Athens, Georgia: University of Georgia Press, 1987 p.2
  2. http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200207/garrow
  3. Fairclough, Adam. To Redeem the Soul of America. Athens, Georgia: University of Georgia Press, 1987 p.206