1955 AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF WHITE CIVIL RIGHTS MARTYR

Of Interest

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This is a rare 1st Edition hardcover of The Mind In Chains: the Autobiography of a Schizophrenic by William L. Moore.  William Lewis Moore (April 28, 1927 – April 23, 1963) was a postal worker and Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) member who staged lone protests against racial segregation. He was murdered on his final protest.  On April 23, 1963, about 70 miles (110 km) into a march, Moore was interviewed by Charlie Hicks, a reporter from radio station WGAD in Gadsden, Alabama, along a rural stretch of U.S. Highway 11 near Attalla, Alabama. The station had received an anonymous phone tip about Moore’s location. In the interview Moore stated “I intend to walk right up to the governor’s mansion in Mississippi and ring his door bell. Then I’ll hand him my letter.” Concerned for Moore’s safety, Hicks offered to drive him to a motel. Moore insisted on continuing his march.

Less than an hour after the reporter left the scene a passing motorist found Moore’s body about a mile farther down the road, shot twice in the head at close range with a .22 caliber rifle. The gun’s ownership was traced to Floyd Simpson, whom Moore had argued with earlier that day, but no charges against him were ever laid. Moore died a week short of his 36th birthday.

Moore’s letter was found and opened. In it Moore reasoned that “the white man cannot be truly free himself until all men have their rights.” He asked Governor Barnett to “Be gracious and give more than is immediately demanded of you….”

NY: Exposition Press, 1955.  315 pages, Very Good condition with dust cover.