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Collection Title : Hamlett (Ed) White Folks Project Collection

Collection Number: M 376

Dates:ca. 1963-2001

Volume: .45 cu.ft.

Provenance: Materials in this collection were generated and/or maintained by Mr. Ed Hamlett.

Donor: Donated by Ed Hamlett on January 25, 2001.

Copyright: This collection may be protected from unauthorized copying by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code).

Biographical/Historical Sketch:

Ed Hamlett was state director of the White Southern Students Project (WSSP), later known as the White Folks Project (WFP), in association with Mississippi Freedom Summer 1964. The outreach project was designed to help awaken poor white communities in the south to the social inequalities they lived with and to similar situations in southern black communities.

In February 1964, Mr. Hamlett was appointed WFP field secretary and began working at the Jackson Council of Federated Organizations (COFO) office in preparation for WFP orientations in Ohio and Tennessee. During this time, Mr. Hamlett met and worked with Sam Shirah, a Biloxi/Gulfport WFP volunteer. Mr. Hamlett’s responsibilities as director ended in the early part of fall 1964.

Hamlett’s activities as an advocate for civil rights spanned a period of approximately ten years. He continued to work in civil rights following Freedom Summer, as evidenced by his participation in the Southern Student Organizing Committee’s (SSOC) black community projects in December 1964.

For the past 28 years Mr. Hamlett has worked as a nurse in psychiatry.


Contents of the collection.

Scope and Content:

The bulk of this collection consists of the following: photocopied letters of general correspondence; photocopied letters of organizational correspondence; photocopied and original White Folks Project (WFP) and Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) daily reports; photocopied WFP meeting minutes; original completed Freedom Summer volunteer applications; photocopied and original articles, newsletters and booklets; photocopied photographic materials; and a 45-minute videotaped interview with the sister of a WFP volunteer.

Series I, Correspondence, is divided into two sub-series, General and Organizational. Folders for general correspondence hold letters sent to Mr. Hamlett from individuals discussing volunteer work for the WFP. Also included are letters between WFP staff members and their close friends or family, and letters to Mr. Hamlett from active volunteers with concerns about the project. Folders for organizational correspondence hold letters received by Mr. Hamlett from organizations interested in merging projects, or ideas, letters sent from staff members about volunteers and letters between staff members about promotional materials.

Series II, Business Records, is divided into three main sub-series: daily reports, meeting minutes, and volunteer applications. The folder for daily reports holds the day to day personal accounts of civil rights activities in various regions within Mississippi ca. summer 1964. The folder for meeting minutes holds copies of executive and local WFP meeting minutes. The folder for volunteer applications holds forms filled out by individuals mentioned frequently in the collection’s meeting minutes and in letters of correspondence.

Series III, Publications, is divided into three main sub-series: articles, newsletters and booklets. Materials in this series are assumed to have been gathered by Mr. Hamlett during his years spent advocating for civil rights. Some of the publications relate specifically to the WFP and some to other important aspects of the civil rights movement. Included is an original Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party booklet and a signed copy of a booklet titled, Majority-Black School Districts in the 11 Southern States, with Part Two, “Three Majority-Black Districts in South Carolina” authored by Ed Hamlett.

Series IV, Photographic Materials, is a collection of photocopied photographic images taken at an unknown gathering.

Series V, Audiovisual Materials, is a folder holding Ed Hamlett’s ca. 45-minute interview with Sue Shirah, sister of Sam Shirah, a Biloxi/Gulfport civil rights volunteer. Sam and Mr. Hamlett first became acquainted during his tenure in Jackson, MS prior to Freedom Summer 1964. In the 2001 interview, Sue discusses how Sam’s civil rights activities impacted her family before, during and after Freedom Summer.

Series VI, Oversized Materials, consists of two oversized copies of The Southern Patriot and oversized news clippings about the disappearance of James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, Freedom Summer volunteers who were murdered in Neshoba County, Mississippi.

Related Collections:

M378 Tiberiis (Douglas) White Folks Project Collection
M363 Shirah (Samuel C. Jr.) Papers


Series I: Correspondence
Series II: Business records
Series III: Publications
Series IV: Photographic materials
Series V: Audiovisual materials
Series VI: Oversized materials

Box and Folder List

Box 1  
Series I: Correspondence
Folder 1 Correspondence: General (Spring, 1964 – May 19, 1964)
Folder 2 Correspondence: General (May 25, 1964 – June 15, 1964)
Folder 3 Correspondence: General (June 25, 1964 – July 18, 1968)
Folder 4 Correspondence: Organizational (May 19, 1963 – February 6, 1967)
Series II: Business Records
Folder 5 Business records: Daily Reports (June 30, [1964] – September 21, 1964)
Folder 6 Business records: Meeting Minutes (June 30, 1964 – July 19, 1964)
Folder 7

Business records: Volunteer applications -

Nelson Blackstock (undated)
Soren Sorenson (June 21, 1964)
Sue Thrasher (June 26, 1964)

Folder 8

Business records: Miscellaneous -

  1. Fact Sheet - “Mississippi Summer Project: The White Community Too,” (1964)
  2. Handout - “Summer Workshops for Volunteers Working in Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana,” (July 24, 1965)
  3. Copy of NCCC Travel Advance (December 15, 1966)
Series III: Publications
Folder 9

Publications: Articles -

  1. The Nation. “Incident in Hattiesburg…,” by Howard Zinn. (May 18, 1964)
  2. The Nation. “’Tired of being sick and tired…’,” by Jerry DeMuth. (June 1, 1964)
  3. The Nation. “The Cat and Mouse Game,” by Elizabeth Sutherland. (September 14, 1964)
Folder 10

Publications: Articles -

  1. The New Republic. “Mississippi: From Conversion to Coercion,” by Christopher Jencks (October 26, 1963)
  2. The New Republic. “Registration in Alabama,” by Howard Zinn (August 22, 1964)
Folder 11

Publications: Newsletters -

  1. Now! The Voice of Freedom, (2) (May 25, 1964)
  2. The Student Voice, 5(22) (September 23, 1964)
  3. Commission on Religion and Race Reports, 1(4), [ca. 1965]
Folder 12

Publications: Newsletters -

  1. Race Relations Reporter, (13) (August 3, 1970)
    * Supplement: “Increasing Numbers Read Newspapers of the Right,” by Frye Gaillard.
    * Supplement: “Union Accused of ‘Sellout’ in Jackson Garbage Strike,” by Jack E. White, Jr.
    * Supplement: “’The Black Athlete – 1970’ Reports on SEC
    Pros,” a survey.
  2. Race Relations Reporter, 2(6) (April 5, 1971)
  3. Race Relations Reporter, 2(23) (December 15, 1971)
    * Supplement: Reporter Index Vol.I (1970)
    * Supplement: Reporter Index Vol.II (1971)
Folder 13 Publications: Booklet - Majority-Black School Districts in the 11 Southern States (July 1970)
Folder 14 Publications: Booklet - Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party
Folder 15

Publications: Miscellaneous -

  1. Brochure - SCLC “Operation Dialogue”
  2. Fact Sheet - “Freedom Democratic Party” (undated)
  3. Handout - “Call for an Assembly of Unrepresented People in Washington, D.C. August, 6-9,” [ca. August 1965]
  4. Report - “News from the Vietnam Day Committee, Berkeley, California, on October 15-16”
Series IV: Photographic materials
Folder 16 Photographic materials: 15 photocopied photographic images
Series V: Audiovisual materials
Folder 17 Audiovisual materials: Video, Ed Hamlett’s interview with Sue Shirah (January 24, 2001)
Series VI: Oversized materials
Oversize Folder

Publications: Newspapers and Article Clippings -

  1. “Hope for 3 Wanes as Dulles Opens Mississippi Talk – 60 Step Up Hunt for Missing Rights Team – Ex.-CIA Head Sees Governor,” by Claude Sitton.
  2. “Hope for 3 Wanes as Dulles Opens Mississippi Talk – Dulles Sees Governor,” by David Halberstam.
  3. “2 of Missing Men Feared for Lives: Told Associates of Concern Before Mississippi Trip,” by R.W. Apple, Jr.
  4. “FBI Augments Mississippi Force,” by M.S. Handler.
  5. “Final House Action on Civil Rights Bill by July 4 Assured,” by E.W. Kenworthy.
  6. "Civil Rights Moderation: How Long?,” by Jeffrey Shero.
  7. The Southern Patriot, 22(4) (April 1964)
  8. The Southern Patriot, 22(8) (October 1964)

Accession Number:  AM14-19                               

Given By:  Ed Hamlett    

Date of Receipt:  July 2014        

Copyright: This collection may be protected from unauthorized copying by the Copyright Law of the united States (Title 17, United States Code).

Extent:  1 item 

Inclusive Dates:  1964; 2014     

Form of Material (Letters, Minutes, etc.):

Photocopy of “Poor Whites and the Movement, A Working Paper” by Emmie Schrader, published and distributed by Southern Student Organizing Committee.

Prepared and maintained by
The University of Southern Mississippi Libraries Special Collections
118 College Drive #5148   Hattiesburg, MS 39406-5148