Springfield History Museum News

Author to Discuss History of Civil Rights Movement

Lyman & Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History

October 8, 2010

The Springfield Museums’ fall lecture series will continue on Wednesday, October 20, at 5 pm with I’ve Got the Light of Freedom presented by Dr. Charles Payne, the Frank P. Hixon Distinguished Service Professor in the School of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago. The program will be held in the Lyman & Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History and is free and open to the public. A reception and book-signing will accompany the talk.

Dr. Payne, who teaches African American studies, sociology and urban affairs, will discuss his award-winning book on the history of the Civil Rights Movement. Concentrating on the delta city of Greenwood, Mississippi, I've Got the Light of Freedom: The Organizing Tradition and the Mississippi Freedom Struggle analyzes the legacy of community organizing. Payne profiles local activists, showing that many came from families with traditions of social involvement. He also explores the disproportionate number of female volunteers, the older black generation's complex interactions with whites, and the decline of organizing as the 1960s proceeded.

The adult program series is sponsored by The Republican.  Payne’s talk is presented in conjunction with the Springfield Public Schools’ Teaching American History program.

Future programs in the series are:
Oct. 24 – Mary Cassatt and the Impressionists, by Robin Lane
Nov. 7 – The Puritan, Striding through Springfield, by Joyce K. Schiller
Nov. 14 – Freedom Summer, by Bruce Watson
Nov. 17 – Wounded Knee: Party Politics and the Road to an American Massacre, by Heather Cox-Richardson.

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