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Medgar W. Evers (1925–1963), the son of a farmer, was born in Decatur, Mississippi. Evers voluntarily enlisted to serve in World War 2, serving in Europe and fighting in the Normandy invasion. After graduating from Alcorn Agricultural and Mechanical College in 1952, he went to work for a black insurance company in the Mississippi Delta. Evers applied to the University of Mississippi Law School in 1954, the same year as the Brown v. Board decision, but was denied admission. Soon after, he began organizing for the NAACP.
Later in 1954, he became the NAACP’s first field secretary in the state. His main duties were recruiting new members and investigating incidents of racial violence. He also led voter registration drives and mass protests, organized boycotts, fought segregation, and helped James Meredith enter the University of Mississippi, integrating the university. Evers was key in collecting witnesses and evidence in the Emmitt Till murder case, bringing it to the attention of the nation. In May 1963, Evers’s home was firebombed and #onthisday in 1963, he was assassinated in his driveway. His killer, white supremacist Byron De La Beckwith, was tried twice in 1964, but both trials resulted in hung juries. De La Beckwith was finally convicted at a third trial in 1994 and sentenced with life imprisonment for the murder of Evers. #APeoplesJourney #ANationsStory #MedgarEvers 📸: 1. Courtesy Mississippi Department of Archives and History, 2. Mrs. Medgar Evers with her children at Medgar Evers' grave, Arlington National cemetery, Library of Congress. - 2 hours ago