James Kates

SNCC/COFO 1964-65
P. O. Box 221
Fitzwilliam, N. H. 03447
Email: jkates@worldpath.net

Interview by KZSU Project South (Institute of American History, Stanford University)
Mississippi Smoldering
June & August, 1964

I volunteered for the Mississippi Summer Project after my freshman year at Wesleyan University, and spent that summer helping to implement a special court order encouraging registration in Panola County. In the fall of 1964, encouraged by Jim Forman and Jimmie Travis, I organized a Friends of SNCC/COFO in Paris, France, to support the work of the American civil-rights movement. I returned to Mississippi in 1965, working in Natchez, and later became a public school teacher, a nonviolence trainer for interpersonal and political movements, a poet and a literary translator. Since 1997, I have co-directed the non-profit literary publishing house Zephyr Press, publishers of Letters from Mississippi: Reports from Civil Rights Volunteers & Poetry of the 1964 Freedom Summer.

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