Document 13A: "Mississippi Summer Project, Re: Administrative Structure for Jackson Office," Jackson, Mississippi, Summer 1964, Elaine DeLott Baker Papers, Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University. 3 pp,
This outline of staffing for Freedom Summer in the Jackson office gives a sense of staff expectations for the summer. The plan reads like the blueprint of a paramilitary campaign to enter a hostile region; with security, legal, communications and troop movements as essential functions, supporting the programmatic efforts around the Congressional challenge, voting rights and research. The difference between this plan and a military campaign is that the only people with guns were the "other side."
Four Black women--Dona Richards, Helen O'Neil, Margaret Burnham, and Thelma White--and three white women--Emmie Schrader, Casey Hayden and Penny Patch--are identified by name. Over the course of the summer, the Jackson office staff swelled, with women filling many of the positions that are designated in this plan as "volunteers."
MISSISSIPPI SUMMER PROJECT
RE: ADMINISTRATIVE STRUCTURE FOR JACKSON OFFICE
This is a description of the functions to be carried out by the Jackson office during the summer and the people working on each program.
Staff: Francis Mitchell (travelling), Bob Weil, Bill Light, Emmy Schrader, Ed Rudd, Dave Wolf, Jerry McWorter
Communications staff will handle public relations, press, and incoming calls requesting information. Each civil rights group working in the state will handle their own press. Definite programs for communications section are now being worked out.
2. Research and Documentation:
Staff: Jessie Morris plus one assistant (to be selected)
a. Research Project
A research program will gather various kinds of material for use in the future by CCFO.
b. Documentation and collection and organization of data related to projects:
Each project will have a research person attached to the project and a communications person attached to the project. The research person will take primary responsibility for collecting information that should be kept in the Jackson files for use after the summer. The research and communications staffs will meet before orientation is over to develop a list of information that should be sent to Jackson weekly. The Jackson research staff will set up a file system for the material and make sure it is being sent in. Some of the information that we will want to keep a record of in Jackson is names of local contacts made, buildings open to us in the community, lists of people at precinct and county meetings, number and names of people taken down to register and attending freedom school and community centers programs. Anyone who has other information to be compiled should talk with Bob Weil.
This job seems to break down into three parts: transportation; dealing with Justice Department, FBI and local police; and keeping track of people around the state.
Staff: Hunter Morey, legal coordinator, will be generally responsible for complaints to JD and FBI and for working with local officials.
Someone is still needed to handle transportation end security. The transportation officer will be responsible for getting cars to areas where they are most needed, which cars must be taken out of operation because too many tickets are being picked up, keeping track of accidents, giving out information on tags and licenses.
The security officer will be responsible for keeping track of people in the state. He will have an overall log of assignments of staff and volunteers. Whenever a person leaves his project for another area to work for a day or so, he should let the communications-research people and his project director know. When he arrives at his destination, he should call back to his project office for himself. If that call does not come through in a reasonable period of time and there is cause for alarm the local project should contact Jackson. The wats line operator will be calling each project daily, in the evening. The wats operator
[p. 2]will find out daily who has left or arrived at the project permanently or on a long term assignment.
The legal coordinator will also have responsibility for organizing calls for bail and to parents in case of arrest. He will also handle calls coming in asking about information on students. The security officer will share this latter responsibility. In case of arrests, the arrested person should contact his local project office, which will then call Jackson and talk with the security officer or legal coordinator.
Staff: Jimmy Bolton and Thelma White
They should be contacted for project expense needs.
5. WATS Line
Staff: Penny Patch, one person from communications (evening shift), Margaret Burnham (if she's there)
These people will work eight hour shifts. They will check daily (in the evening) with each project. Further information on the Wats system and on the Jackson office phone system will be circulated before the end of orientation.
6. Political Programs and Voting:
Staff: Freedom Registration--Dona Moses and one volunteer Each project should assign one person to be responsible for Freedom Registration. There will be a meeting of these people before the orientation ends.
Freedom Vote and Veter Registration--one person to be assigned when needed
Convention Challenge--Dick Jewitt and Casey Hayden--each project should decide which counties they can set up meetings in and how to assign workers to organizing the meetings. Decisions on dates for meetings should be made as soon as possible and Jackson will supply leaflets for canvassing for the meetings. Dick Jewitt should be given dates for meetings, meetings for counties can be held throughout July and should be held as early in the month as possible. Any project which wished help on a meeting (speaker, someone to run the meeting, etc.) should contact Jackson.
7. Scheduling Special Visitors
Staff: Hellen O'Neil
Folksingers, college faculty, prominent women will be travelling on a short term basis in the state. Hellen O'Neil will work with local projects on setting up schedules for them Hellen should also be contacted if you want a special person for a special task in your area.
8. Housing in Jackson
Hellen O'Neil will also be working on this.
a. Orientations: Penny Patch and Margaret Burnham will work on orientations to take place during the summer. Hopefully, these will be held at Tougaloo. People coming in during the week can
[p. 3]wait in Jackson until the weekend, when orientations will be held. They will be assigned to projects from the orientation. Anyone arriving on a project whose name has not been given the project director in advance should be checked out with Jackson. People should call Jackson when they arrive at their project after leaving the orientation site. The orientation people will give the security officer the assignments to projects. People on projects should advise Penny and Margaret of their personnel needs so people can be assigned to them as they come in.
People will be screened by field staff and Penny and Margaret at orientation. In cases of people who don't seem to fit in they will be referred to a personnel committee.
c) Transfers and People-to-be-sent-home: Personnel committee will handle cases where people do not work out on a project and must be sent to another. They will also handle cases where people must be sent home. Personnel committee might consist of Penny, Margaret Burnham, and three others of whom one would be Bob Coles.
10. Production, mailing, materials
Jimmy Pittman will handle this department, with volunteers assigned to him as needed. Field requests for materials should be sent in several days in advance via Wats line.
11. White Student Project
Ed Hamlett will be working out of the Jackson office.
12. Decision Making Group
Bob Moses, Dave Dennis and others will constitute an appeal board for decisions about which people feel the need of advice or about which there is disagreement.
13. Freedom. School, Community Center, Ministers Project These projects will be working out of an office of their own near the CCFO office. They will work there, using 1017 facilities end consulting with the 1017 personnel as needed. A Wats line will operate out of this office, also. The administration of this office will be worked out at the second orientation session.
| Documents Projects and Archives | Teacher's Corner | Scholar's Edition | Full-Text Sources | About Us | Contact Us |