Sam Friedman

CORE, SNCC, 1959-70, Washington DC, Maryland
Current Residence: Highland Park, NJ

My first activity in the Movement was attendance at the Second Youth March for Integrated Schools in 1959 in Washington, DC. After that, I joined Washington CORE and was involved in desegregation activities aimed at the downtown YMCA.

In 1960, I took part in picketing the Woolworth's on 14th Street. Later in the year, CORE inititiated demonstrations at Glen Echo, a large amusement park in Montgomery County, MD. This involved hundreds of people in picket lines week after week. I took part in a sit-in at Glen Echo in summer, 1960. (I think it is the only time the movement sat in there.)

This was characterized by the cops arresting only black people. As a white, I was not arrested--but the manager did offer some young teenagers money to physically attack me. Luckily, I was able to stare them out of it. But you can see from this some of the ways in which racist power relationships helped create disunity in the movement in terms of how the races were treated, with whites not getting arrested.

I also was involved (after the Glen Echo struggle was won) in picketing at MacLean Gardens, a housing development in the northwest section of DC that was discriminatory.

I was also very involved in Friends of SNCC work in Massachusetts (organizing for example a very effective money raising drive at the polls on election day, 1962 against the opposition of city government) and Michigan; functioned as lead organizer of a several-hundred person picket of Chrysler in Detroit over its South Africa involvement (held the week after the Selma March); and many other campaigns and events in the Boston area and southeast Michigan.

Movement involvement made into a decent human being.

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