Back

"The world will regard America's sense of justice as a hollow mockery if the white men who brutally lynched young Emmett Till in Mississippi are not punished. I do not mean Mississippi justice. There is as much justice in Mississippi as in Communist Russia. This case legally falls under your jurisdiction and should be prosecuted in a federal court as Emmett Till's civil rights were violated." (To: J. Edgar Hoover, Director, FBI From: Lester Banks, Los Angeles, California - September 6, 1955)

"I urge that you have the Department of Justice immediately investigate the widespread violations of civil rights in Mississippi and other Southern states. The recent Emmett Louis Till case is a travesty of American justice. Action must be taken at once to enforce in the South those federal statutes passed by the Congress to wipe out the evils of lynching and kidnapping." (To: Herbert G. Brownwell, Attorney General From: Charles A. Buckley, Member of Congress - November 4, 1955)

 

"Lack of proper federal action when the Till boy was kidnapped and murdered has apparently been a sign to some people in Mississippi that kidnap and murder are permitted and condoned in their state. The rush of recent killings in Mississippi seems to attest to such an attitude. It would seem to me for some action to be taken to bring law and order into Mississippi. Uncontrolled civil violence in Mississippi not only threatens civil liberties in our country but also must have a seriously deleterious effect on our foreign relations. The attitude of non-white countries cannot but be affected by the repeated violence occurring in Mississippi. I strongly urge that you take action to end the un-American and uncivilized violence recurring in Mississippi and to bring the criminals to justice." (To: Senator Irving M. Ives From: Sidney Unger, Kord Manufacturing Company, Bronx, New York - December 8, 1955)