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Jesse Jackson | Chicago Freedom Movement

Jesse Jackson

Andrew Rossmeissl @ Fri, 2006-08-11 09:45

". . .In 1965, Dr. King decided it was time to come North to highlight that Northern racism was more concealed than in the South but still very much alive. He narrowed the choices to New York and Chicago, cities representing the nation's largest Black populations. SCLC staff people concluded that New York's Harlem was too disorganized and fragmented. They chose Chicago, the hub of America’s Black life. . . .

During that period, I attended Chicago Theological Seminary, along with David M. Wallace and Gary Massoni. We three pioneered Chicago's Operation Breadbasket. In our last year of school, our lives were changed directly by Dr. King's visit to Chicago. Dr. Alvin Pitcher, our ethics professor, helped us organize a minister's meeting held on Wednesday evenings, where we discussed social justice concepts. The Reverends Frank Sims, A.L. James, Clay Evans, Edmund Blaire, Stroy Freeman, the Reverends Claude and Addie Wyatt and Henry Hardy belonged to this group. As the ministers internalized these new ideas and impressions, their social attitudes and ministries changed. Not all accepted that. One minister became so disturbed by our thrust that he chased us out of the church with a loaded gun. . . .

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