Peter Coppelman

LSCRRC, 1967, Louisiana
1324 Canyonwood Court, No. 1
Walnut Creek, CA 94595
Phone: 703.989.6652

Civil Rights Poems

In the summer of 1967 I was a Law Student Civil Rights Research Council (LSCRRC) intern in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, for thirteen weeks. I worked with Murphy W. Bell, a black civil rights lawyer, the bravest man I ever met. We filed federal lawsuits to integrate the Baton Rouge jail and stop the building of an airport runway extension through a black community instead of a white graveyard.

My picture appeared in the paper with two black civil rights leaders with the caption Civil Rights Triumvirate. After that I received death threats from the Klan, and slept with my door barricaded and a loaded gun under my head.

Murphy represented the marchers from Bogalusa to Baton Rouge through the heart of Klan country. Inspired by Murphy, I devoted my entire legal career to public interest work.


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