RUTH KOENIG MISSISSIPPI SUMMER
PROJECT COLLECTION, 1964-1966 #558
ft.: 1 DB)
by: Danielle Snyder, 2002
In 1964, the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project was
established by the Council of Federated Organizations (COFO), an alliance of
four civil rights groups: the National Association for the Advancement of
Colored People (NAACP); the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC);
the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE); and the Southern Christian Leadership
Conference (SCLC). The purpose of
the Freedom Summer was to develop a unified voter registration program in
Mississippi to support the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) at the
National Democratic Convention in Atlantic City.
Furthermore, COFO hoped to attract the government and nation’s
attention through the help of hundreds of predominately northern, white
Lasting from late June to mid-August 1964, the Freedom
Summer Project was closely followed by the northern media, and grabbed the
attention of the New Left. Ultimately,
the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project established a black political presence in
the state of Mississippi, as well as organized various programs including the
Freedom Schools and Community Centers.
Scope and Conten
The Ruth Koenig collection includes personal and business
correspondence, pictures, and various printed material.
The collection is arranged in four series as follows:
Series 1: CORRESPONDENCE: letters to/from Ruth Koenig, "The Gang," and other people.
Series 2: BUSINESS
RECORDS: organizational documents pertaining to "Friends of SNCC"
and the Holly Springs Project and financial records.
There is also a sub-series that holds documentation concerning SNCC,
which includes press releases and Mississippi incident reports from 1964.
Series 3: EPHEMERA:
two diaries written by Ruth Koenig, and transcripts of two Freedom Songs.
Ruth Koenig Papers [unprocessed manuscript collection], University of Southern Mississippi, McCain Library and Archives, accession number: AM01-114.