John Taylor, Carol Ruth Silver Jailed in Mississippi 50 years ago

Photo by Adam L. Turner at Post headquarters.

John Taylor was active in Politics and became very active in the Civil Rights Movement. John was a member of CORE (Congress of Racial Equality) and in 1961 signed on as a Freedom Rider to help integrate Interstate Travel. After receiving study workshops in non-violent protest, he traveled with other Freedom Riders to Mississippi to demonstrate.  He later traveled to demonstrate in train and bus stations in Louisiana and the Houston, Texas Airport. John spent several weeks incarcerated at the Mississippi State Prison at Parchman. John later returned to Berkeley and helped to integrate local Businesses.  He worked toward the goal of integrating Public Schools in Berkeley California.   John continued to work as an  AA to Assemblyman Byron Rumford 17th District, Berkeley, California In 1968, John was appointed by the California State Democratic Party, as Advance Man for former V. P. Hubert H. Humphrey Presidential Campaign.  This was a first for an African American in a Presidential Campaign.  John traveled throughout the country on the campaign trail. In May, 1961, Carol Ruth Silver rode by bus from New York City through Atlanta, GA and Nashville, TN (where she was trained in non-violence and how not to respond to beatings or worse, and where, under the watchful eye of Freedom Rider organizer Diane Nash she wrote her Last Will & Testament, to be sent to her parents in case she was called upon for the ultimate sacrifice).  In Nashville, Carol Ruth joined five male divinity students, two white and three African-American, for the final bus trip into Jackson, MS.  In Jackson She was incarcerated at the notorious Mississippi State Prison at Parchman. Later she went to law school at the University of Chicago, and her conviction was reversed on appeal. She worked as a lawyer for civil rights causes, and for the poor, before being elected for three terms to the Board of Supervisors in San Francisco, along with Harvey Milk, in 1977.  Her book, Freedom Rider Diary, is being published by the University Press of Mississippi (available now for pre-orders — and she promises to autograph any pre-ordered book.)
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