Gloria Hayes Richardson oral history interview conducted by Joseph Mosnier in New York, New York, 2011-07-19.
GR: Yeah, Bill Hansen and Reginald Robinson. So, they did and stayed at my uncle’s house and they started having, calling in community people, and, uh, who - I wasn’t part of that either [laughs] - that, you know, supported the young people and whatnot. And then, uh, Donna was involved. She claims this isn’t - she doesn’t remember this, but anyhow.
JM: You’re talking about your daughter, Donna?
GR: My older daughter, Donna.
GR: She was one of the organizers, became one of the organizers of, uh, of the high school students. And so, uh, both high school and grammar school kids went - they practically stopped the town. And then, the ministers went down and agreed that, “Well, if we have peace - uh, we can’t make an agreement with white folks - unless you have peace, you can’t negotiate.” So, one week passed, two weeks passed, three weeks passed.
The parents that had gotten emotionally involved with the kids and that when they had a big mass meeting and decided to send people down to SNCC and ask if we could have an adult group. And in that process, they asked me if I would take a leadership role there, because they felt at that time we didn’t - we weren’t talking about violence. They thought that financially I would not be jeopardized, because there would be somebody there to take care of me and my family. And that’s really - and my cousin and I went down. And SNCC agreed. And we came back and started, you know, going into laundry - uh, laundromats, the churches, the bars, and sending out little [laughing] badly put-together newsletters and organizing throughout the county.
JM: Yeah. Let me ask you a little more -
JB: Let’s stop -
GR: And then, initially, it was -
JM: Excuse me just a second.
JM: Excuse me just one sec. We’re going to pause for just a sec.
[Recording stops and then resumes]
JB: We’re back.