Shortly after the Greensboro, North Carolina, sit-in began on February 1, 1960, Nashville students, who had initiated “test sit-ins” in 1959, followed suit. Despite beatings, arrests, jailing of protesters, and a bombing, six stores agreed in May to desegregate their lunch counters. Martin Luther King, Jr., (1929–1968) called the Nashville movement “the best organized and most disciplined in the Southland.” In this excerpt from NBC White Paper: Sit-In, broadcast December 20, 1960, protesters, including John Lewis (b. 1940), describe the experience.

Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division. Courtesy of NBC News

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