Rev. Fred L. Shuttlesworth (1996) (4 of 5)

BCRI Oral History Collection
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SHUTTLESWORTH: So, I said to them, My brethren, the Bible say, let us be brethren. I said, We have different outlooks and interpretations of what's going on. I said, We don't have to be enemies. I said, What I came to say was, two things, number one, we are glad to see the ministers organized and hope that you will do something. And anything that you want to start action, we will automatically endorse it. The Alabama Christian Movement will automatically, you have our automatic endorsement, you don't have to ask us. I say, on the other thing, now listen, Dr. Williams, I'm not consumed by what people say about me. I said, And I'm gonna be brothers regardless. I said, But the people want action 00:01:00and somebody's got to give it to them. I said, Now, I'm not asking you to do what I do because I know about the Klan and I'm not afraid of the Klan -- I'm not saying you are -- I said, but take my position, and this is it from kin to can't, if God tells me to jump it's my place to jump and his place to fix a place for me to land. And I said, I know that isn't what most people do, I said, but I think God would look worse telling me to jump and not fixing a place for me to land, than I would for jumping in faith, so it's mine to jump, and so whatever you all do, just remember that, we gone do what we think we must do, we gone fight segregation whether you like it or not, whether you go with us or not.

And that did a lot to them because we were on the verge of Dr. King coming in, you know, and King tried to apologize to them for not asking them, but I had to 00:02:00get back up and say, Now, Dr. King is speaking and he hopes that he can get you, but you can't, you have to be truthful. Actually, if you had voted for him to come in he couldn't have come in, but he's here because the Alabama Christian Movement asked him, and we hope to have your cooperation. I didn't make any, I never believed in just lying, you have to, King was trying to sort of apologize for not asking them, saying to them, we're coming in.

HHUNTLEY: You had actually invited him to come.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I invited him to come, and said that, As Birmingham goes, so goes the nation, that we've got the citadel of segregation and Bull Connor is the symbol, and if you come, and remember Mr. Connor been talking about the jail, I 00:03:00said, We can actually fill the jails up, 'cause the, and really, Birmingham was the strongest affiliate.

HHUNTLEY: Birmingham was the strongest affiliate?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yeah. Montgomery didn't do too much, you know. But Birmingham, we always were doing something here, in jail, we always kept the headlines, you know. So, we agreed I believe the end of '62 to come, and here comes the meeting with Sid Smyer and others, you want that don't you?

HHUNTLEY: Yes, because they had really determined that they were not going to recognize you, right?

SHUTTLESWORTH: They had not. The only time I met the power structure in this city, despite the fact that my church had been bombed twice, was bombed in '56 and '58, second bombing, when the Klan set the bomb against the wall trying to destroy the church, and Colonel Johnson and John L. Lewis set it in the street and it dug a six foot hole in the street, it would have caved the walls in, and 00:04:00I wouldn't have had a base to operate -- here again, God decrees things. The, when they knew that SCLC was coming in, Lucius Pitts, Gaston and some of the others. And remember I was friends with all of them. It wasn't a matter that we were enemies. (Talk about tape).

SHUTTLESWORTH: Sid Smyer, see, they had met, and you must remember that this power structure had a knack of meeting with people like Gaston and Pitts and others, and thought that they represented the Negroes, but Mr. Gaston, I understand, told them, they said in the meeting when I first went there, said, 00:05:00Well, just like I told you, Mr. Smyer, I got some money, said, but Fred's got the people, he could (?) tomorrow and you haven't talked with him, so that's how I met them.

HUNTLEY: So that's how you got to meet them.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yeah. So then Mr. Smyer wanted to give me the great honor, yeah, we're glad to meet you and this and that. I said, Well, I'm not too sure that you're happy to meet me, 'cause my church been bombed twice and I ain't never heard or met with you gentlemen. (?) And wanted to call me doctor, and I went on and I said, well, we don't need the amenities, we are here to find out what you can do. Well, we want to see if we can keep Dr. King out of here. And I just simply said, 'Mr. Smyer, I'm surprised at you.' All around the city at this time, it was signs, It's so nice to have you in Birmingham. I said, 'We believe that King is nice enough to come here too.' Well [imitating Smyer], I, I, I, I 00:06:00think he's a nice man but we just don't want no demonstrations. I said, 'Well, what can you do to prevent demonstrations?' I said, 'because otherwise I'd be wasting my time, I'm trying to fight segregation.' So that first meeting, as I recall, they were saying that they couldn't make commitments, so finally I said, We're wasting time, then, there's nothing for us to talk about. I think first initially we left, but they called back the very next day, and King and Abernathy, I'm not sure they went there the first time, and on that side with them, Louis Pizitz, the stores where those young people were arrested, Louis Pizitz was there especially, and the man from Loveman's.

HUNTLEY: Was it true that the Birmingham business community actually sent a delegation to Atlanta to meet with Martin before they even talked with you and 00:07:00Martin sent them back saying you have to talk with Fred?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I heard that but I wouldn't put anything above them. But Martin knew that first of all, his hopes and the hopes of the Movement depended on what my Movement and I would do. This isn't to say that we are so important but there are just times when things are designed to happen in this place or that place, and there are people destined to assume the stage at that moment. I had heard about that, I didn't put too much credence in it because I never even asked Martin about it, but SCLC needed Birmingham, especially after Albany.

HUNTLEY: After Albany, that's right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And they had already known that Bull Connor and all the Klan hadn't stopped us from going. And then you must remember now, we're in '62, but 00:08:00in '58, there were some incidents that you should know that helped to crystallize Martin's opinion that Birmingham was the place, and I'll just give them to you here, so we can get into that and you can-- We were meeting at St. James Baptist Church down there, and this is where Bull was going to use the fire chief to stampede the meetings. So we, Martin was sitting there, St. James, balcony and all, it was packed. Martin was here and several others, visiting from Montgomery. Bill Shortridge was giving a financial report, and I'm sitting there, and all of a sudden, the flashing lights come down, and then another thing, they would have somebody inside, and what we say inside could be heard outside, what you call those things, mikes, whatever?


HUNTLEY: P. A. systems, megaphones?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Police, yeah, whatever we were saying inside could be heard outside.

HUNTLEY: Oh, I see.

SHUTTLESWORTH: But we weren't, didn't have anything to hide. So the chief, so one time there were two policemen came, not the chief, and they would come and stand up so that we'd have the aisles packed and then they wanted to tell us to ask the people to get out the aisles, where are they going? So we opened a church around the corner and had a half a church full of folks there. So I got up, I said, Well, what's happening? He said, Well, Reverend, we want the aisles cleared. I said, Alright, alright. So then as soon as we had got the aisles cleared, then they come back in and standing up. So Bill went back up to talk, I 00:10:00said, Just a minute, Bill. I said, Gentlemen, where in the hell do y'all think this is? If we can't stand in the aisles, you can't stand in the aisles, get the hell out of the church and bring them back. And boy, the folks just (claps), this is how you kept the spirit up, you know. So they said, Oh, oh, oh, we're sorry, so they had to go out that night. Else we would have got the people who had just put out. Martin said, Fred, I don't see how you, the Movement is really strong in this city. I said, It's stronger than that, Martin.

So I believe it was in the next month or the next two weeks they were up here again, Chief Knox himself came. And we were in the same church, it wasn't over a month difference, that's the place where __?__ Billups put his hand up and the police arrested him for touching an officer, interfering. So Martin was there 00:11:00that night and so Chief Knox comes down, so finally the Fire Department comes in, you know, and they wanted to come in with their hats on, you know, walking through, and Bill was talking, I said, Bill, just a minute, so I got up and I said, Now, gentlemen, I said, Now the fire that you all are trying to put out is not in here and you know it, you can't put this fire out.

I said, But what we'll do, we'll cooperate, I said, Everybody look around here and see if you see anything under your seat, they looking for a bomb, I said, Let them come look, I said, Will y'all hurry up and come look and get the hell out 'cause we're gone have our meeting. People just (claps). So then Chief Knox comes down and I said, Chief, now we are just about tired of this. I said, We're just tired of Bull Connor harassing us. Reverend, I assure you -- now I'm standing up and he's down in the aisle, you know, I would we had a picture of that -- he said, Reverend, I assure you, you know all over New York and everywhere else they have fire codes. I said, Well, we've been trying to obey, but your men come down here, they want us to get out of the aisle and they stand in them and we ain't gone do that. I said, In fact, Chief -- I'm deciding to 00:12:00shoot the works, you know -- I say, I think I'm just tired of Bull Connor harassing us and I think, Tonight, I said, Do you have any room in your jail? I said, 'Cause we about ready. I said, We just about, how many y'all ready to go to jail? Everybody ready tonight? I said, We just tired of this damn harassment, aren't we? And the folks just stood up. I said, Chief, you got room for all these? Reverend, I assure you that it isnt' Bull Connor harassing you, (laughter) we're just simply trying to do fire code. I said, Chief, are you sure that -- I'm just rubbing it in -- I said, Chief, are you sure that Bull ain't sent you down here to do this and that? Reverend, I raise my hand, I assure you. I said, Alright, Chief, tell you what, we gone obey the order. But tell Bull we are just damn tired of them harassing us. Well, this gets folks, you know, it does something.

HUNTLEY: You used that, really, to your advantage.

SHUTTLESWORTH: To my advantage, and to let folks know that we can assert in a certain way. And Martin was there both times, and he couldn't understand, he 00:13:00said, Boy, I couldn't have done that. I said, Yes you could have, if you were __?__, but Martin __?__, and he couldn't have, but I just said that to him. But, I always had charge of the situation and I had a ready answer, and I anticipated, I think that's probably one of the things, I never was surprised at what the segregationsts did. The only time I was surprised by them was like, been so many incidents and I don't want to--

HUNTLEY: Well, the incidents is what makes the story, so any of incidents please feel free to share.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I'll just leave that for the moment but to show you, you know I told you I was never surprised. But they would come up to me, like one day came up to the church, you know I was arrested about, at least three times on a vagrancy warrant -- I'm a full time pastor. It so happened that a schoolteacher 00:14:00was out about three o'clock in the morning, had some liquor in the car. And the police had stopped the car, there she had the liquor, and they could __?__, so they made her have sex with both of them.

HUNTLEY: Oh, is that right?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yeah. She came the next day and told me. I talked to the chief there while she was in my office. I always try to be above board, it wasn't a thing that I tried to harass them unnecessarily. So the chief wanted to know, why did she come to you. I said, Because she felt like if she come to you, you wouldn't do nothing about it. And they had told her to come back the next night, wanted some more, you know. And so I told the chief all of this and we arranged, chief, I don't know whether he told them not to come, you never know, 00:15:00but she did go back out, but we had at least five cars around.

HUNTLEY: Watching.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Watching. But the police, they had gone through there just before she got there, as I recall, but they never came back. So then, for that and the next week they said that somebody had, claimed to say that somebody had done some pulling of somebody's genitalia, that is not me but I reported it to them, you understand, that what people would say to me, and make sure that people were not lying. So they get me on a vagrancy warrant. So whenever they wanted to prevent something, 'cause they know I was in action, they'd put me in jail on a vagrancy warrant, you can't get a bond. And I was in jail, I think at least, 00:16:00what, two or three times. And I was looking at some papers here the other day where Mr. Shores had filed something against them for arresting me on vagrancy, and the FBI had something about it in its file. But you could expect them to do anything, it's just that you were alert and that you had to be prepared. So we come into this idea now of the second meeting, Smyer. And I was, I sort of, you know, I could have acted nasty, and even Miles College President Pitts, he was surprised at how nice I was and how gentle and yet how firm. He said, you know, Fred, people got the impression that you are mean, tough, he said, but I 00:17:00couldn't have done like you. Now, I said, well, you know, in a fight people say anything, and they were acting like they left it, you know read people now say about the middle class, and I always regard the middle class as people who are blessed, and I didn't necessarily consider myself one of them, but I never had any enemies in the middle class. I just knew segregation had to be wrong, and so John Drew, the man that had the insurance company, what his name?

HUNTLEY: That was Drew.

SHUTTLESWORTH: No, Drew had insurance, now his daughter has it. The slender guy, got on, first one on the school board.

HUNTLEY: Yeah, I know who you're talking about.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah. He was a good friend of mine, and quiet. And I had good friends among, I just didn't, I wasn't close to John and Deanie Drew like Martin 00:18:00and them was, they would go out to their house and so forth, which wasn't my thing necessarily, but always we were friends. I never had any words with any of the middle class people.

HUNTLEY: Right, right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: It just wasn't my thing. But the paper would put it, I've seen that in the--

HUNTLEY: You were always at odds with those people that--

SHUTTLESWORTH: I was just determined to do my thing, I knew I had the power to do it 'cause the people backed me up, and I didn't have to request from them. Indeed had they had the vote on it we wouldn't be where we are today, you know that. People don't vote to go into bombings and all that kind of stuff. But I realized that these were good people, and I loved them actually, but I realized I had a job to do and I couldn't be carried (?) because of friendship or other things. So then in this hectic, dramatic meeting where we thought we made a 00:19:00breakthrough, and there are just so many things about it that you could just take time, Mr. Smyer was saying that he really wished we didn't have to demonstrate. I said, No, there's no alternative to demonstrations if y'all don't do something. So then I believe it was __?__ said, I'll desegregate the water, I said no, not water, we have to have toilets now. I said, 'Cause our women go in and can't, you know, use the toilet, this and that. Said, I can't do that. I said, That's where the problem is.

Well, Louis Pizitz was the hardest person there, and he said, Yeah, he was, I think he was a Jew, My rabbi said this and that. I said, Look, it ain't what you rabbi said. And I realized that he was gone be the point man, incorrigible. So 00:20:00after we were talking, I said, I'll tell you what, Mr. Pizitz, I said, I've just made a decision. Martin and Ralph will say I did all the talking. I said, I have decided that Martin Luther King, Ralph and I are going to be arrested at your store. When we are arrested, we aren't going to walk, we are going to be dragged in, see. Then when we get in jail, we are not gone shave, we not gone eat, just gone-- and when we come out we're looking bad and folks won't go to your store no more. So the Loveman's man, this is how, so the man at Loveman's said, Well, let me go make a call. And he wasn't really gone hardly long enough to make a call, came back I guess within a minute. He said, you know I think I've got part of a solution. Said, What is it? He said, My maintenance man was painting on the 00:21:00door and he had painted some, had slopped a little paint on that sign, and I told him, Oh, hell, go ahead and paint over the sign. I said, Now, you're a wise-thinking white man. If all y'all would do like that, we wouldn't have problems. And that was the beginning of the agreement that we would not announce it, and I didn't announce it. He say I was out for publicity but I didn't, I said, No, no, no, we realize this, and one of the things we had tried to get the merchants to do was to join us in a suit against the city, but they didn't want to do that. Because I felt as if we were really fighting segregation, if they, so I said, Well, now, if you can't join with us, we have to be against you.

HUNTLEY: You know, let me back up just a bit. I just thought about something--

SHUTTLESWORTH: But in this situation, I don't want to forget that, A. G. Gaston said to Pizitz, when I was arguing with Pizitz, he said, Now Mr. Pizitz, I'm 00:22:00surprised at you, he said, now, you and I started together, he said, you were walking around here with clothes on your back selling them to Negroes, the Negroes made your money. He said, Now, and it's just awful that you can't be with them. That's one of the things that made me have a lot of respect at that time for A. G. Gaston. Go ahead.

HUNTLEY: Harrison Salisbury, of the New York Times--


HUNTLEY: came out and wrote this article that cried out to the world saying what Birmingham was about.

SHUTTLESWORTH: The bomb, the whip.

HUNTLEY: Yes, and everything was segregated. They banned the use of a book that had black and white rabbits in it. And the city fathers then filed a suit against the New York Times.


SHUTTLESWORTH: It was together, it was closed again, they in Montgomery, but it was a Montgomery man that filed the suit, wasn't it?

HUNTLEY: Oh, okay. I thought it was the city.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think it was the Montgomery, Sullivan in Montgomery, wasn't it?

HUNTLEY: Oh, okay. But anyway--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Dick Tyree (?), the Post, the editors, all of them spoke and they even spoke on that CBS film, but I think it was the case of Sullivan in Montgomery, but they were all included as to what they could do to stop us, you know. Yeah, go ahead.

HUNTLEY: How did the Movement react to that event?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, you know, I was interviewed, and I said what Salisbury wrote was true, 'cause it was. And Sullivan came out and sued, but you couldn't sue the New York Times without attaching it some people in Alabama. So that was me, King, Abernathy, and ______, wasn't it? And Joe Lowery.



SHUTTLESWORTH: Five of us. We were sued for what, three and a half million dollars, something like that? When I'm speaking, tell folks I'm worth more what for I ain't got than what I really have. But Judge Walter B. Jones, you know, I think issued the, in this thing also, so we had to, the suit was tried before him, I believe it was.

HUNTLEY: Yesterday we were trying to think of a judge's name and then we went back and looked at some things and Ralph Parker came to mind. Is that one of the, he was the judge that said that the Brown decision null and void because the Southern congressmen and senators--

SHUTTLESWORTH: hadn't ratified, yeah, yeah. But he was here, wasn't he? Parker was here, yeah. But the case was tried in Montgomery. The Sullivan case was 00:25:00tried in Montgomery 'cause I was there. I always remember these little funny things. I'm convinced that if you can't laugh at things you'll burst, you have to. Joe Lowery, we were there, you know, and Joe Lowery had on a golden, green suit, iridescent, glowed in the light, and had the shoes on and had a big round hole in his shoe. And so I always was sort of jocular, so Joe was telling me, Fred, Fred, be serious, respect the jury, influence the jury. I said, Negro, do you think you gone be wearing a hundred dollar suit and shoe with a hole a in it focused at the jury, thinking that the jury gone (inaudible) and they gone say, Convict 'em all! (Laughter) But we were there in this court and we knew that we were gonna lose the case. They'd bring up the name of Sammy Davis. You know 00:26:00Sammy Davis married a white wife.

HUNTLEY: That's right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Almost every other word, And so and so and so, and Sammy Davis! And this and that, went on and talked. I don't think we testified, I'm trying to think. If we did it was minor, miniscule. It was a rigged thing and the jury was gonna do anyway and so the verdict was against us. And you must remember that I lost my car, '57 Plymouth.

HUNTLEY: Oh, yeah?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yeah! And that first little house I told you that I had bought that got sued, I had sense enough to give L. J. Rogers a pre-dated mortgage, so that he filed that mortgage and they would have taken that. So he built two block houses on it, and that's the only thing I saved out of that, but I lost my car, I'm trying to see what else it was. I think Joe Lowery lost his 00:27:00car but he got it back. But I never did get anything for mine. So Alabama owes me something right now.

HUNTLEY: They owe you a car.


HUNTLEY: When, getting back to the--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, Bull Connor was aware of these negotiations. He didn't think that these businessmen ought to be talking with us. Mr. Connor never did, I say he never did respect me, but I respected him, you know, in his capacity, he just didn't have the capacity to be the kind of leader that Birmingham should have had. So he had, I don't know whether he had people reporting to him or not, but he did have the capacity to go around and find violations in these people, and this is how he was going to harass them, see. And I understand, during the 00:28:00same time that we were meeting, that he was doing this. So he put out that they had been meeting with us, and blah, blah, blah and all like that, and he had people report to him that they had painted over the segregation signs, so he threatened to put them in jail and that's where it broke down, see. But one of things I say now, and I don't know, I guess all roads lead to Rome, but I think it would have been a great thing-- See, I didn't meet David Vann during this thing, they were trying to get this election, all this came up at the same time. And wouldn't it have been nice if whites and Blacks had been able to sit down and talk together, even then, to coordinate.

HUNTLEY: Right. When did you first meet David Vann?

SHUTTLESWORTH: It was probably after the demonstrations, when I met him to know 00:29:00him. And we should get this in. I thought always that people should talk face to face when they talk. Kennedy had sent Burke Marshall in here. I respect the man, but Burke Marshall was about to sell us down the river, in the sense that he was negotiating with the whites on one side and then with this committee Martin set up on the other. I wasn't into that other meeting. But Martin knew they couldn't agree to anything that I didn't go with. And I did it to show, because people thought I was so hard, okay, so long as we're making progress. Because see you must remember that, and it isn't generally written or known, but they had to agree to three things to come into Birmingham, and didn't carry any of them out. 00:30:00Number one, we were to have joint statements, 'cause I had seen in other places where Martin would make a statement and not coordinate it with the local leader, and the local leader was lost in the shuffle, and when Martin pulled out it was a big mess. Joint statements. If that's true, then the Letter from the Birmingham Jail would have been signed by Martin, Ralph and me. But I never took any offense at that. We were to meet ten minutes every morning at least for strategy, which Martin and Ralph never found the time to do. And the main thing was that if an injunction was issued against us, whether people were in jail or 00:31:00not we were going to disobey. And that's where the confrontation at John Drew's house, if you want that I can give it to you now, does not make me any difference.

HUNTLEY: Yeah, let's hold off on that one a little bit, and let's talk about those first days that, you know the demonstrations started actually April first I believe.

SHUTTLESWORTH: April first or third, whatever it was. Charles Billups and I led the first wave, fifty-seven of us marched and we were arrested in front of the post office. That was the first wave of demonstrations. And then we began to recruit each night. Of course people have to work and I'm not sure that we would have ever filled up the jails with working people. But a movement has a way of 00:32:00either crescendo-ing or it dies out. But it so happened that based on the sufferings and things that the Negoes had taken here, almost anything in a push would have drive. And the middle class just got quiet. You must remember (short skip in tape) during the demonstrations. I think the white people tried to get Gaston and Drew and two or three others to make a statement. (a few words inaudible) And I had just left Birmingham and flown to Cincinnati, and when I got there there was a message for me from Andrew Young. Martin said can you fly right back cause we got to get together people to make a statement. Well we knew if they start making statements, temporizing statements, it would be basically 00:33:00what the power structure wanted. So we had to fly back, I flew right back, very same day. And we met in Mr. Gaston's motel, the old brick, white brick part of it. And we had just to come out and say, you know, that actually Mr. Gaston and others, I think the statement was, if you go back and read, we stand ready and willing, the local leaders, you know. And so, Martin and them knew that he couldn't have done it by themselves, couldn't get them to tone down, except that I came, 'cause he had tried to use them as a part of negotiations, and now here they are going to make statements. It would have just torn us up. So I flew back in and I realized it was a historical moment. And I was as nice as I could be. I 00:34:00said, Well, now, gentlemen, and ladies, and Mr. Gaston, we appreciate what you've been doing and the help you've given us, but now is not the time for people to speak out. Y'all have been making statements and they neither got the Negro anything, and they just feel like when y'all talk they're not getting anywhere. And if you must insist in doing it, then we have to boycott your place just like we do the white folks'. That stopped it, see. That isn't generally known, and I'm not trying to reflect on anybody, but I had come back. So this shows you whether or not I was important in the Movement.

HUNTLEY: Right. You left Birmingham in sixty-one. Why did you leave in sixty-one to move in Cincinnati?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, the folks up there insisted that the Lord had told them to 00:35:00call me. It was economic anything else. I wasn't ever going to get a larger church here that could pay me what I needed. My children were getting up in school. My wife wasn't going to get a job in Alabama, see. And it wasn't just for the money. I could have stayed because my local movement, this isn't known either, they wanted to supplement my salary at Bethel. But I did not feel as if I should let them supplement, because I wasn't going to argue with them about what I say and do. At the same time I understood that if I was independent I could give the same type of leadership unfettered and unhindered by anything that somebody had maybe hooked onto the power structure want to might do. And 00:36:00then up there I had the problem of, not the problem, they wanted me, I told them I didn't think that the Lord told me to come up there so I wasn't coming, this is a long story in itself, but to make it shorter, I went up there, I think we talked yesterday about Lamar Weaver had me come up there, right?

HUNTLEY: Well, we really didn't mention it.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, I don't know whether you want to get into all of it but let's say, they had to agree, I told them, y'all want my history but you're getting a man. I was a man in the South, I suffered in the South, and my history is what you want, but you're getting a man, and I'll be your pastor. And of course they wanted, they didn't understand the kind of person I was even then, even before, you know, taking the job, and they, when they finally called me I 00:37:00got Rev. Lane to go out there to tell them No, and they voted themselves for three-month pay for me to reconsider. And it was during that time that things happened, you know, you can never know, and I hadn't thought about going up there. And even Rev. Ware who was sort of at odds with me, I was preaching out here on church, I believe it was Rev. Freeman's church on the side of a hill up in Fountain Heights somewhere over there, because we had been at my church the year before so I had to bring the introductory sermon, and I remember preaching and it was a such a, after they had called me, I guess the fire was on me or something, and it was amazing, when I preached, most of the people were outside, 00:38:00shouting and so forth. So Rev. Ware said to me, this sticks out in mind, he said, Reverend, an unusual thing happened here today, he said, now the Lord works sometimes different from what we think. He said, now you, your mind is here, so you and I have differed, I haven't been anti-you, I just differed, and I really didn't want to talk to him, I said, Yeah, doctor, I was listening. He said but the Lord may be trying to say something to you. The Lord may want you to go up there. You said you think you have to heading this all the time. He said, this is your heart. He said, and I understand how you feel, said, but what happened today is a manifestation that God is moving in your life. He said, and you must realize it's God's work, too. He said, so you pray over it. He said, 00:39:00I'm not telling you what to do, he said, the Lord may want you to go up there. I hadn't even considered, no more than that wall, 'cause I had told them, my answer it no, call somebody else. And I hadn't even thought about it and that thing that day got to it. And so, and then I began going home. And it wasn't Ware had called me to think about, it's incidentally is what comes into my mind, and I know that it has to be, it comes so in a way that you know that it has to be God. And I was sleeping one night and it looked like to me I was going to a red church across the river, but they were so tired in Birmingham that it was all one thing. And I began thinking, well, if I can go and be independent in my own what I make, without looking to my board to sustain me, 'cause I couldn't be 00:40:00independent of them, taking orders from them about what I could, could not do, they'd have a right to say, you know. And then I went up there, and I finally told them, this takes some time but I'm just, the final word that I said to them, now, y'all think you want me, you don't really need me, but if I come, I have to be the man here that I was anywhere else, and you have to agree to my thing, so they agreed not to interfere with my going at all, although I never spent their money to come, to do anything. Not to interfere, and to support me in my going, and it worked out that I spent more time here, even being a pastor, 00:41:00so I told them, I said you have to be glad when you see me and pray for me when I'm gone, 'cause the world is my pulpit, and if it comes down to a choice of my having a pulpit to preach in and my standing for what's right, then the pulpit goes. Period. So they have never interfered to this day. Now I have had a right-wing attack up there which you don't need to talk about. I've been into it in so many at church as well, and the church I have now came out of that, that's why I'm in Cincinnati, to sustain the truth, and that's why I've been there this long.

HUNTLEY: What role did Lamar Weaver play in all this?

SHUTTLESWORTH: None. I was disappointed, and even when I went to Cincinnati, (?) with Lamar Weaver.

HUNTLEY: Was he living in Cincinnati at the time?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, at one time he was living in Cincinnati.

HUNTLEY: When you first went there.


SHUTTLESWORTH: When I first went there. But I didn't, we never kept any contact. That was one of my disappointments. I saw him last week, he always wishes me well and I wish him well. But I was disappointed in that we didn't get close, I was hoping we could establish that relationship 'cause, you know, even in Cincinnati I started leading fights and challenging city council, they (?) anything, I call a mass meeting at my church and get a resolution and be in the streets, and I wanted Lamar, who was here, to be, and he could have, really, become front page, but I couldn't find him up there.

HUNTLEY: At some point did he become a member of your church, did he join your church?

SHUTTLESWORTH: No. No. When he left, I didn't know he'd left. I don't think I spoke to Lamar after he met me that night when I went up to preach. He and 00:43:00Elaine met me at the station. I don't really remember speaking to him up there, I saw him in Atlanta a number of times.

HUNTLEY: Why did he meet you at the station, because he knew you were from here?

SHUTTLESWORTH: From here. And he wanted me to speak at Revelation. I guess he thought it would be nice for me to come up to a vacant church. I wasn't looking for any churches. I don't know any church that was given to my heart as Bethel Baptist Church, you know.

HUNTLEY: Was that a hard decision to make for you and your family to leave Birmingham at that point?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, I had some internal problems in my family, not destructable, and I thought that my wife had begun to, it didn't really become 00:44:00overt till she got up there. You know, sometimes you can become envious of a person's status. I've always been a popular individual, out front, men and women, from the time I began preaching in Mobile, as I told you, people would go out of their way to make openings for me. But we never argued, my wife and I, you wouldn't believe this, have never argued over a man or woman, nothing like that, but things that happened that we grew not, not a part. Now, I realize, though, that the large part of it was my own rugged individualistic style in going and doing. She knew I was going to do what I felt like I'd do. But I always supported them as a family, and when I could I could be home and so forth. And then she got a job teaching and looked like her mind just left home. And I really didn't want to--


HUNTLEY: She got a job teaching here?


HUNTLEY: Cincinnati.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I really didn't want to go, to take her to Cincinnati cause the problem had begun to evidence a little bit in Selma, and then here, and so during the time that I was trying to agonize over whether to go, one day we were at the house, and she said to me, she had never mentioned it before, she said, Fred, let's go up to Cincinnati. I said, Well, you know, I told you that I would never want to go into another church with you. I think we just should, I don't think I should go for that reason, and I don't want to have trouble. Because see, here, my wife was going, I sent her back to Montgomery to school, she didn't want to finish her nurse's training. And when she would come home, there would just be so much problems until I could hardly, and I'm not saying this to 00:46:00do anything, she's the mother of my children, and she stuck with me back in those days. But people somehow or another get apart.

HUNTLEY: That was due to your popularity?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Her doctor said to me, only once, he said your wife is fighting your image, that's her problem and I can't do nothing with it, it's a psychological problem. And I heard her tell somebody she was playing a role model, well, a wife never plays a role model, you just do your job. But I don't want to get into, but I'm saying that I, here, before I left, we had, I had helped her to finish school. It took all I could do because I wasn't making but seventy-five dollars a week, paying an aunt to keep the kids, and so she says to 00:47:00me, let's go to Cincinnati, and I said, Well, I told you I would never be in another church where I'd have to have problems, where there would be argumentations and so forth. Wasn't serious but it was just enough to, so she said, Well, let's get a new start. I think that indirectly, and I have to be honest, 'cause we're all human, partly that helped to inveigh with my mind to consider whether I would go, cause she needed to leave Birmingham, you know. And, of course when we got into Cincinnati she became totally another individual. She got a job teaching, and sometimes I would see her in the morning and not again till ten or eleven at night, you know, she doing business things and other things. But that weighed a little bit 'cause I always believed in 00:48:00keeping the family together. I don't believe in a man running off and forsaking his family. And then I don't basically believe in divorce unless it just must happen. So, I'm giving you intimate things because I think you have to be honest about it. Everybody faces, nowadays, when divorce is so prevalent and all, you really hate to think about these things, and we all have our part and we have to face them as best we can. But I do think, in any situation, people ought to try to see what God wants in their lives in this situation. And then feel satisfied that whatever the result is, if you follow God, it's gone come out all right, 'cause that's my code.

HUNTLEY: Your children at that time were, were they high school?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Fred, Jr., was sixteen, and they were, yeah, Jr. wanted to finish 00:49:00high school, the others finished high school here at Parker, the two girls, so they started UC. And, here again, just to show you some problems I have, I'm here civil-righting, you know--

HUNTLEY: So they finished high school, then, after you had moved to Cincinnati, though, right?

SHUTTLESWORTH: They started UC, the two girls.


SHUTTLESWORTH: 'Cause they didn't go to high school up there I don't recall. But this problem, let's go back to the wife thing. She was so concerned about them being free to, you know, you let kids do everything and go, and don't get their lessons, don't study, so UC, at one time, was expelling three of my kids for not 00:50:00maintaining an average, and all my kids are, none of them are dumb, and I didn't even know it. So we go over to UC and I'm going over there, you know, indignant, here I am fighting for human rights, blah, blah, blah, and you put my kids out of school. And this professor said to me, He said, Reverend, he said, You know, I'm not a segregationist and I realize how you feel, he says, he said to his secretary, said, Go get their file on Shuttlesworth's children. He had a file that thick. And he had letters in there where he had written me telling me-- (end Side A)

Side B:

SHUTTLESWORTH: --the boy wanted to get married, and first Black judge in 00:51:00Cincinnati, I had endorsed him in the paper so he got elected by seventy thousand votes. Cincinnati is as much racist as, still. His wife happened to be a principal, and so she got a good job, and you become set in your ways. And instead of her insisting on the kids getting their lessons, she'd take them out of school and sent them to Knoxville College, I didn't know anything about it. So he's down there and he fails down there.

HUNTLEY: You didn't know that the child was being transferred..

SHUTTLESWORTH: No, no, no, no. So the man down there, whatever, examiner, bursar, whatever it was, he called and talked to me, he say, Well, Reverend, you might as well come because he's heart is in getting married and he's failing his 00:52:00grades, he's not going to do any better down here. So he comes back home without my knowing anything, my wife had arranged with this principal, and he's a judge and knew all of the white people, I didn't know any of them. They had done arranged for him to go to Denver, gone pay some scholarship in Denver for him. And my wife, just offhand one day, said I'm getting him a scholarship for him to go-- I said, No, no, no, if he can't make it at UC, which is one of the best schools in the country, he won't make it anywhere. And then I called Mrs. Lovelace. I said, Mrs. Lovelace, I'm a little bit surprised at the relationship you had, remember one time, and I don't want to get into all this, but her husband, the Republican Party controlled Cincinnati. And he couldn't fire his 00:53:00bailiff for doing favors and things that he had made, and I went down with the preachers there and threatened to shake up the city, said, I'd be glad to go to jail, said, the party system is running the judicial. That was her husband. And I was sitting outside in the hall when they were talking to him like you'd have some kid sitting there talking on the bench. And I told him, I said, Mr. Bonds, Republican chairman, I said, Now, he said, Well, we will move the bailiff, Party will move the bailiff, judge can't fire his own bailiff. And I said, Mr. Bonds, I know how people do but I said I'll you what, if there's any more interference with him a judge, I'll come down and sit in the middle of the street and get arrested so I can get in the paper. The paper's gone hear what I'm saying, 00:54:00Republican Party. I give you my hand. Well, now, so his wife, you know, knows all about this, I saved his job. So I said to her, I can't imagine, with all that we've been through, that you would make arrangements to send my son off, see he was down in Knoxville, I didn't know anything about that. She said, Reverend, you mean to tell me, I said, Now you gone send him to Denver? She said, Mrs. Shuttlesworth told me that you all were together, and she was shocked, of course, but I didn't let him go. These are just problems, but you always have internal problems. You know, you can have problems outside and inside but you have to do what you think is basically right.

HUNTLEY: So when you, then, as the Movement progressed, you already organized Birmingham with the Alabama Christian Movement.


HUNTLEY: So by sixty-two, when you invited SCLC to come into Birmingham, why did 00:55:00you think that this was the time?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, it's simple. You must remember that for seven years, and I hope Birmingham people learn this, for seven years, before we invited SCLC, we had won all of the legal victories, we had tested everything and won, ________ case and all. But they were pyrrhic victories. They had closed the library, they closed this, and they closed the parks! That's Shuttlesworth versus Birmingham. So my thought was that, and I didn't think that Dr. King himself was gone win the battle, I thought that Dr. King and all of our influence together with what Birmingham could do based on what the strength of the Movement, and crescendoing, and people coming from the outside, see, we planned to invite 00:56:00people from the outside, when we went to jail, for violating the injunction, we had a statement ready to ask people to come in and serve to speak. Doctor, I was always aware that you have to look out for the worst, and if you get prepared for the worst you'll do alright, see. That's why I never worried about saying what was gone happen to me, 'cause I always had figured what the worst could come out of it. SCLC needed Birmingham. SCLC needed to resurrect itself and to prove that we can persuade people to challenge in their own right. You must remember that SCLC didn't make movements. SCLC only helped to facilitate and by all of our, you must remember that, in all of the places that we went, Martin 00:57:00couldn't be there all of the time, nor Ralph couldn't. I was symbolism, I would go in, and Martin would go in, and Ralph. Then like in Memphis, when he was killed, I was to go in next Tuesday, see, to encourage people and to keep things going. Well it just so happened here that you had one of the symbols of the Movement on which the Movement depended at one time, and it's one of them things that anybody could come in here and run over, and change things even if they didn't like it. There were instances, and I don't talk about it, where they were trying, it appeared that they were trying to undercut my leadership, and some people thought that, but _______ a lot of things that we were doing, and ______ a few things I would do differently at the moment, but that's not-- I think that you do what you feel you should do at that time and that's it. I've been asked 00:58:00why was it that I didn't go when the Nobel Peace Prize, when the Peace was given for what happened in Birmingham. And Dr. King never asked me, and I never asked him. And some of the press have said that he was doing his thing. And I said, well, you know, I'm satisfied to have moved us further from where we were, that I wasn't seeking glory and don't today, you know. To God be the glory.

HUNTLEY: In those early days of the '63 demonstrations, after the first arrest, the meetings there, the nightly meetings started to grow, but then there was a period where it appeared that people had gotten rather afraid, to lose jobs, and 00:59:00then there was this idea of bringing the children into--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, I think, that we had, it was a general discussion at one time, that really everybody should be fighting for freedom. We hadn't specifically thought about the children. It was our need that the children were brought up as soldiers. Our idea was that we ought to teach everybody freedom and so forth. And we were not increasingly jail people like we wanted to, and some of the people who had been to jail twice, even adults, couldn't keep going back and keep a job, see. And so we had been talking, it had been kicked around, 01:00:00and James Bevill pushed the idea further and how he got it over convinced Wyatt T. Walker and myself. Well, what we basically agreed upon was gone be it anyway, see. And my position was that young people could be no better soldiers anywhere at anytime than understanding what freedom was and fighting for freedom. And of course when we had meeting and talked with King about it, he had something basically-- King also knew that we would never fill the jails or if we did it would be over some kind of a miracle. And so Wyatt and I had tacitly given Bevill the idea of beginning to, Orange and others, to feel the students out, 01:01:00because the children were coming to the Mass Meetings. It wasn't a problem for us having to go out and persuade them.

HUNTLEY: Yeah, they were already there.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, the children, we were having so many young folks and I began focusing in my speeches on children. And then one of things was that what the parents need is to set an example for their children but the children are supposed to sustain their parents. And the kids wanted to do it, to them it was a challenge. But then I think one of the lessons that all students, white and Black, ought to be mandatory, is the basic discipline of the Movement, because children now have so many lax situations and levities that they need to be, say, well, now, you need to learn this along with that, so that you can balance in your thinking. That young people, even children, helped to win this battle, 01:02:00without them we wouldn't have won. See, at one time, we had over three thousand people in jail, and Burke Marshall, I don't know whether you want to get into this now, we were right at the height of the Movement and I went downtown and I saw, the policemen were so frustrated, turned around in the middle of the street, and they were asking me, Well, how many more you got? I said, Well, we got about four thousand more. And remember Arthur Hanes, the changing government thing, he went down there, and I told him, I said, You're a powerful man in a powerless situation. We had downtown just stood still, civil disobedience. And I said to Martin, all we've got to do is to hold them three more days.


HUNTLEY: Now it was in the height of this period that you were--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --struck with a fire hose. But the so-called negotiating committee, they were going to temporize, you know, and Burke Marshall was talking and I don't know what Burke was saying to be honest with you. And when I was struck with the fire hose, here again, you see, let's don't try to figure life without the God of life. I was so tense, and you must remember, I wasn't out there challenging them, I had been helping to get the kids out of the street back into the building so we could talk to them that you don't need to challenge 01:04:00and taunt the police.

HUNTLEY: Give us a little of that, what was that, how does that transpire, how did that evolve? This whole situation of your being where you were at the time and what were the children doing?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Okay. This was, I don't know what day it was with the fire hose. (brief inaudible) A. G. Gaston said he looked out his office and saw children walking down the street, but I had been in the demonstration and I had to get behind a tree and the hose seventy-five feet away would knock bark off this tree, right by, I couldn't look out. I had to get behind a tree to avoid the water, this is not when I'm struck. So I had to, we had to try to be sure that even as the young people were being struck with the hose, that there were cases 01:05:00of severe disability, it was our responsibility, mine I think as well as others. And on this day, this was the second day when the kids were taunting the police, I had come around from over on Fifth Avenue and we had gotten all the kids out the park, Bevill, all of us, and I had come around and came on this sidewalk, in fact the tripod, where we put Martin, was right between Martin's statue and that. And so I passed by them just like you and I talking, they recognized me, they were friendly, basically. And as you would have it, so I went on across the street, never looking back, until I went to go down the steps. And you know how 01:06:00far it is from going down the steps at Sixteenth Street as it is across the street. One of the firemen said to the other one, this was the one on the road, I could hear them like you and I talking--

HUNTLEY: Is that right?

SHUTTLESWORTH: It's unusual, it had to be God. And I turned and they had already turned the water up and the water beginning to arc on me, and I just put my hand before my face, before my face, and I was slammed against that wall. Else my face would have been disfigured today, and I was slammed against the wall, and the water came on. My breath, I had trouble getting my breath and all like that. And I just finally lay, I was conscious, I didn't get unconscious, but I was slammed against the wall, and I felt the water still pressuring on me once I was there. And I guess then they turned it up but I just couldn't do anything but lay there. And then I heard somebody say, Hey, that's Reverend Shuttlesworth! 01:07:00and I could hear people screaming, and I was taken out to Holy Family. At that time I had been so worked up that I was concerned that Martin and Ralph, we weren't communicating like we were, and here we needed to be together on whatever happened, because I knew that we had to keep the pressure on. But the negotiating committee had begun trying to give the merchants a way out of it. So I went to the hospital. Doctor, the first thing he did is give me a hypo, wanted to knock me out, he said, you're just so hyper. But he didn't knock me out. And 01:08:00later on then that night he came in, he said, now you, and I had during the struggle developed a kind of a tension like. And he gave me another one there that night, but I just wouldn't give in. I was aware that I had to be back here, I don't know for what and I don't know why, but I just didn't, just go out. So, and Martin and Ralph didn't come. This was one thing that I was real disturbed about, to see about me at all. And the next morning, when Rev. Gardner and my wife came out, the doctor told them this, he said now, his heart is over there, he's not gone rest, said I've given him two hypos, take him on back over there and if he can be, he'll rest better at the motel in the midst of what's going on 01:09:00'cause that's where his mind is. I said, You're right. They brought me to Gaston Motel, it's on that wing on that side, I don't know whether it's Room 24 or whatever it was, and I had not, tucking me in the bed, and I had been in the bed ten minutes before Andrew Young comes over and knocks on the door, Martin wants you out to John Drew's house. This upset me very much. And he didn't tarry, I said, Where I need to be? He said, Well, no, come on, it's urgent, you just go to get up. So I get up and go. I always if Martin and Ralph say they need me I go, whatever I feel. And I guess we better just (inaudible). Drew's house is, it's (inaudible) level, you're walking and step down and turn, and way over 01:10:00there you step up.


SHUTTLESWORTH: In this room was, see, Deanie Drew was sitting way up on the steps over there on the floor. Martin was looking out of the windows over the woods with his hands in his back pockets, that's the way he always stood when he was really deep in trouble. He wasn't saying anything. Burke

Marhsall was sitting 'bout the middle of the room, Ralph was a little bit further. Dolan and some others, I guess it was Dolan, I don't know that name, and I haven't (inaudible) since, to be honest with you. So I stepped down and I didn't know I was that weak until I sat in the chair and dropped. And I said, Martin, why is it that I have to get up out of my sick bed and come out to John Drew's house? So he didn't answer me. I said, Martin, I asked you why must I get 01:11:00up out of my sick bed and come to John Drew's house? Without looking around, he said, Well, Fred, you've got to call these demonstrations off, (inaudible) pained. And I realize the pressure that was on him. (inaudible) I felt sorry for him but I was mad as hell too, that they couldn't come and sit down and talk to me and see what was what, (inaudible) bring the whole committee. He said, Well, you've got to call them-- I said, Say that again. He said, we've got to call-- I said, I thought over here we were not gone call the demonstrations off. I said, Martin, what in the world has happened? I said, You don't mean to tell me we got near four thousand people and then on my word and your word (inaudible) as I said this again, you get full control (?). Now, Fred, I don't-- I said, I don't 01:12:00think you ought to say, I said, your own brother says it about you. I said, but that ain't the point, we ain't calling nothing off, we ain't calling a damn thing off, actually is what I said. So Deanie Drew was sitting way over on the other side, and she talked real, I want to know why we can't call it off, and I was angry. I said, You can't call nothing off 'cause you didn't call nothing on. I didn't come over here to talk with you. Well, now, the fat's in the fire. And I said, No, we aren't calling anything off. And I tried to get up and I realized how weak I was and I was getting angrier by the moment. And Ralph was beyond Martin, Burke was the closest to me, about as far as from here to that lamp 01:13:00stand, Ralph was a little bit further, between Burke and Martin, couple other people there. So Ralph, said, Now, Fred, you and I went to school together,didn't we? And we're friends, ain't we, Fred? And I'd been on my knees but while he was talking he was coming on his knees and winding up between my knees. And we can meet, I said, Ralph, get off your damn knees, you can get on your belly, it won't make no difference, we ain't calling nothing off. So he abruptly turned around and went back. I said, We are not calling anything off. Well they had arranged, now listen! All this time-- and I don't know nothing about it -- that the president was gone make a joint statement in Washington, Martin was gone make a joint TV statement in Birmingham, calling it off!

HUNTLEY: Already decided.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, and until somebody said, Well, what about the president's-- I said, Oh, you've got a press conference. I said, I tell you what you do. Go 01:14:00ahead and do it, I said, and I'm gone go back and get in my sick bed, and when I see you all have called it off, then with what little strength I've got I'm gone get back out and lead them thousand kids out in the street and you'll be dead, I said, Martin, you'll be Mr. S-H-I-T instead of Mr. Big. And I said, so the President's got, I said, Well, y'all go ahead, and I tried to get up and couldn't and got angry you know. So then, I believe it was Dolan, or Noland, one of them, Deanie had a little room open here, it's a phone line there. Robert Kennedy always, 'cause remember I told you yesterday, he was the one the point man, he keeps up with what's going on? So he called during that time.

HUNTLEY: While you were there.

SHUTTLESWORTH: See, they realized that if they had called it off without me and I had called it back on, everybody'd be messed up, I think. So, he called, and this man was trying to tell him, "the frail one". Martin didn't understand the 01:15:00word so he had to say it a little louder, "the frail one". And I heard him. I say I guess you're talking to the president and his brother. I said, Tell him I'm frail but not that damn frail. We ain't calling nothing off.

HUNTLEY: (Laughing) You defied the president of the United States.

SHUTTLESWORTH: The president of the United States, I said, I understand that the president nor his brother live down here. And people have confidence in me, and Martin through me. And these people are going to jail and we just ain't calling nothing off. And then I really got up 'cause I was going anyway. And then Burke Marshall said, I was still sitting down and he made this statement now, you figure out what kind of statement this is. He said, But I have made promises to these people.

HUNTLEY: Hm-hmm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And I looked straight at him, I said, Burke, any promise you made that I didn't agree with is not a promise. I said, Let's go, said now, hell, now 01:16:00y'all carry it on and let's go. And so I'm getting up and walking out, my wife and Rev. Gardner got under my arms, I couldn't get up myself. And as I turned around, Burke said these words to me. Don't worry, Fred, they are going to agree to your demands. Now suppose I hadn't, he said, now don't worry. And they went back that same night and agreed.

HUNTLEY: So that would have actually changed the whole movement.

SHUTTLESWORTH: If we had ever stopped short of an agreement, where the merchants could say, we didn't agree to anything? SCLC would have been dead, the Movement, for the breakthrough that's close as we were? And we are, I knew we had to had to be, you know, there are so many little things you need to get on tape I guess. You know we must be making progress when I go before Judge Brown, the one 01:17:00who died on the, in _____ with the Georgia court, but this was two or three days before that, and I'm going before him on my sentencing, Let me call you Mister Shuttlesworth for a change, I regret to inform you that because of the overcrowded conditions at the jail, I cannot sentence you this morning. I said, Your Honor, we're making progress. And so I sat in the white section, he was trying to, now y'all go and sit where you're supposed to sit, I'm sitting right over there and looking 'cause I know he couldn't put me in jail. (Laughter) So you see we won. But what would disaster that would have been. And you can know or anybody can know, King never would have a national holiday had we not won in Birmingham. But it took that. And I gave this interview to Howell Raines because 01:18:00I didn't want history to pass without us, you see, and I have never sought to demean any man's name, certainly not Martin, I think he was the man, the spokesman for the hour he was. And I don't know whether we had the same ideas, but at least we were caught up together in the idea of the fighting segregation, lifting the burden of people and to some degree at least, at least as he communicated to me. We were, we could talk together and seemingly have same mind. So I had no _________ with him, I never, press have asked me, Martin was doing this thing have larger purpose, but my purpose to overthrow segregation, first here then there and everywhere. And so as long as Martin could do that 01:19:00without abusing the people and so forth. And so I'm happy with the King holiday and I'm happy and supported it and do support it, and I hate for anybody to say anything demeaning of Martin.

HUNTLEY: Were you in town the night of the bombing of A. D. King's home and the motel?

SHUTTLESWORTH: No. I had gone back to Cincinnati and I think I came back the next day. So, no I wasn't here.

HUNTLEY: That was the night that it appeared that Black folk had decided they were gonna, there wasn't going to be any nonviolence that night and that created somewhat of a difficulty for the Movement leaders.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, especially in view of the fact that you were trying to keep people, Al Lingo and others and state governor had his troopers in and so forth. 01:20:00And it's just amazing that it was contained. But I think the threat of Kennedy federalizing the Guard was what kept it from going further than it did, see. The President was alert that if, for instance, if for instance we didn't get a clear victory out of it, whatever else happened, and we were going to continue things and they were going to start beating us up, he would have to federalize the Guard, and we were of a mind, I was, that if it took the federal guards, see we had already known what the limited marshal law in Montgomery did, it didn't fulfill the purpose, Martin was disappointed, 'cause he announced, and Federal troops are on the way, when he found out it was limited marshal law. Kennedy was trying to get some things that, you know, to help. And I admired him. I have said that if it had not been for the Kennedy's in the White House and the 01:21:00King's, meaning Ralph, me and others and all the other people, in the streets, America would still be a jungle.

HUNTLEY: Hm-hmm, hm-hmm. After that, I guess, that May, what then was your relationship to Birmingham, 'cause I guess there were still demonstrations exigent, how often did you come back and--?

SHUTTLESWORTH: See, I was back in Birmingham till sixty-five.

HUNTLEY: Back and forth.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I was regularly back, supporting the students, supporting, yeah. And I wanted to resign in sixty-five. And that's when they gave, my moving gave me this This Is Your Life thing, I have some of those pictures I will show you when you want to talk about archives and so forth. In sixty-five. But I kept 01:22:00charge of the Movement until sixty-nine. Now from sixty-five, from sixty-six until sixty-nine I didn't come as much, see, because it was good to me that the students were doing some things, and whenever anything of any consequence was going on I was right back, and I was always available, you know. For instance if somebody was receiving a backset in something, I'd come stand right here, 'cause I was always ready to go to jail. Jail to me was one way of getting things done, 'cause a long time in jail, the press got to be there, you can say something and then you can push. I know this. And I think at this time the power structure was trying to avoid things, you know, to do just enough, really the segregationists, 01:23:00and the system now, does only what it has to, no more. It doesn't change much, it just enough to keep down problems, and ____ when it has to, which is unfortunate. Which goes back to say, my friend, that we're a long way from doing God's word or will that says, Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness as a mighty stream, everybody says that, but we are satisfied that justice only trickles.

HUNTLEY: The trickling of justice.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, a trickle of justice. The change of government, you can ask that, okay.

HUNTLEY: At the time that Birmingham was going through this effort to change the 01:24:00government from a commission form of government to the city council or mayoral form, some things were happening as far as the Movement was concerned. Can you sort of elaborate on some of the highlights of things that were happening at that point?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, the Movement actually was holding its breath, or in abeyance, or in hopes, just like everybody else was, that the type of Birmingham government could be changed, the commission form, which had not served adequately anyway. And it was too personalized in people like Bull Connor, you know, so forth. So that we were hopeful that the citizens could elect their officials in calm and without intimidation and so forth. Well, you know, farther 01:25:00demonstrations, which Connor was concerned about keeping, all his concern was, was keeping office. And it just so happened that I was, somebody was driving me to the airport, and I happened to hear -- and this was the week before the election, as I recall, not over two weeks -- and I happened to hear on the radio report that Mr. Connor had said that the white people in Birmingham had better wake up because Shuttlesworth and them Negroes are planning to tear up the town, something, and better elect him so they could be sure of being safe, of keeping safe and so forth. And all of a sudden it dawned on me that Mr. Connor was going 01:26:00to stage something and put it on the Movement, to get the white people upset, and had that been done, all of what Dave Van and all the rest of the people who were trying to change the method of government would have failed, because the majority of the white folk would have been angry at Movement demonstrations. And I realized this, I understood it clearly in a moment. When I was going to the airport I didn't have time to call Lola Hendricks or nobody else at the airport, plane was to take off, so on the plane I just wrote out a statement, and when I hit the ground in Atlanta between the change of planes, I called Lola Hendricks and read to her word for word, I said, the Alabama Christian Movement -- as I recall now -- is desirous that the citizens of Birmingham in a calm and 01:27:00undisturbed atmosphere will take time to choose their officials, the people they want to lead them. Therefore the Alabama Christian Movement will plan no activities for this period of the election and will not participate in any planned by anybody else. Which means that if there had been demonstrations, I had foreclosed any of them, for ourselves or anybody else.

HUNTLEY: Right, so he couldn't put that on the Movement.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Couldn't put that, Mr. Connor had planned to put it on the Movement. And I don't think many of the citizens of this country or this city know that right now. But anyway, I said to her, I said now get this to all three of the television stations and also to the radio stations at once. And I understand that within an hour she had gotten people and had taken it to every one of them, cause I called back later on, she said all of it. And they were 01:28:00glad to get it, 'cause they realized it was important to the election that, to know that the Movement was not planning any, and they had already realized that this other thing was put out before that we had planned it. But for me saying there wouldn't be any, nor our participation in it, then that, I'm sure that had that not been done, Mr. Connor would have won the election, and the citizens right now of this city don't know that had that happened the change of government would not have happened.

HUNTLEY: You also had the opportunity to serve as your lawyer at one point and you had Bull Connor on the stand.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, you must remember that as I was telling you about the situation where Chief Knox and the fire department and all of the police was out all, but we would be strong in the Movement. Well, this was simply a method of harassing, what I call harassing the harassers, and giving the people the show 01:29:00that you can have a voice. And I knew that lawyers have a particular power where you summon, subpoena people. And so this was thought out by me and Lynn Holt who came in and helped us file a lot of suits when we were having a lot of difficulty with lawyers, although I didn't have anything against lawyers, we just didn't have money enough to do all, but Lynn Holt gave his time. Lynn Holt could type up a suit between here and the Atlanta airport and I'd file it pro se. (laughter)

HUNTLEY: You'd file it.

SHUTTLESWORTH: As a pauper, yeah, and Judge Grooms understood it. And so, but this suit was heard before Seabourn Lynn. Seabourn H. Lynn, Judge Lynn, the segregationists, they always called him their judge. And in that Star, which was 01:30:00the Klan paper, they had Lynn listed as the Klansman's judge. So I knew at first whether we won or not it didn't make any difference, but Lynn and I suggested that it would be a psychological thing, to let the people just to know that Bull Connor, as powerful as he was, can be subpoenaed on the stand, and I would be--

HUNTLEY: His interrogator.

SHUTTLESWORTH: His interrogator, yeah, (unintelligible) some questions, I think you have some of them there, I didn't know (unintelligible) if I would ask him (unintelligible) questions, but I knew we weren't gone win, Lynn knew that too, in fact Judge Lynn told us, practically, I think, before we even started, and as soon as, he said, well, I'm gonna rule against you so I think he wrote something out, yeah. But we had him over, and did a lot of psychological lifting to the 01:31:00people to know that we could have Bull Connor on the stand.

HUNTLEY: Were people in the courtroom that day, Black folk and all.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yeah, yeah, it was full. And he had to be there. And he had to wait till I called him, Jimmy Morgan also was there.

HUNTLEY: That must have been quite a triumphant day psychologically.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, you should have been in that Movement that night, that week, that was all that was talked about. And Bull felt humiliated, but what difference did it make?

HUNTLEY: That's right. Your activities after Birmingham, after like sixty-five or so, you spent most of your time living in Cincinnati, tell me about what was happening in Cincinnati.


SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, you must remember I went, I was called to Cincinnati in sixty-one. In the early part, cause I left Bethel in August. I was so heavily involved here, I was in about fourteen lawsuits then. I've been in about, I guess about forty altogether, they suing me and I'm suing them and all that kind of stuff. And, but going into Cincinnati, I was accepted as a hero, I made headlines, you know, my going there, my whatever happened to me there. You must remember that I was on the board of Southern Conference Education Fund, and then I had accepted the presidency of it, and the Jackson Daily News put out a green sheet with a black streamer, Negro Pastor Heads Communist Front. So I knew that 01:33:00to a segregationist, anybody who believed in integration was a Communist.


SHUTTLESWORTH: And that about the same time as I was being called to Cincinnati, so I just put out a statement that I was not going to enter into verbal gymnastics with people who for a lifetime have been just trying to hold back democracy and democratic action by accusing people of being Communist, so forth, and I said to a segregationist, anybody who wants integration is a Communist. I said besides, I take the position Abraham Lincoln took, that calling a cow's tail a leg does not make it a leg. And I wasn't bothered about any of it.

HUNTLEY: How did you get involved with the Southern Conference Education Fund initially?


SHUTTLESWORTH: I always was fascinated with the fact that so many teachers and leaders who just believe in empathizing or sympathizing with Black men for freedom were either harassed, driven out, or, in their jobs and so forth.

HUNTLEY: These are whites.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Whites, white people. And I was always moved with the fact that a few of them still lived in the South. Like the people in Montgomery, I forget their names.

HUNTLEY: Durr's, Virginia Durr, yeah.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Durr's, Virginia Durr and others. And the Bradens of Louisville, who simply bought a house for a Negro in a white neighborhood. And they were indicted for sedition, sedition, and Carl Braden was called before the House Unamerican Activities Committee and asked his opinions and he told them that his 01:35:00opinions wasn't no damn business of the committee. And I just have always felt as if people like that needed to be supported. And interestingly, you're talking about where the link between civil rights and civil liberties was sort of coordinated because when Dr. King was rising as a star you remember, the NAACP and others were real, what you say, careful about what he said, and he had to be careful about what he said, because the Southern senators and leaders were calling everybody Communist, or anybody who worked with them. With my being in the position I was, and I had the strongest affiliate, so I had equal voice with 01:36:00Martin or anybody else, and I always had the right the say what I felt and to do as I felt. Martin knew that. And so that they needed me more than I needed them at that particular time. So Anne Braden, I thought it was raw persecution. So I was asked to serve about fifty, may fifty-four, fifty-five--

HUNTLEY: Okay, that early?

SHUTTLESWORTH: -- on the board with them. Dr. Hupp of West Virginia and Jim Dombrowski of New Orleans, and Anne and Carl Braden, oh, there were any number, I was surprised at the number. Bishop Love, and old Bishop Green, anybody who advocated lifting the cause of Negroes, of whites and Blacks working together, that's what, the thing. And so, I gladly joined to be on the board. And as I had 01:37:00been on the board, I noticed that they accepted my position, and sort of leaned over backwards to be sure that to pay attention when I was there because I was a Christian, first of all, living in Birmingham. They could give me that whole body support without anything, and the challenges that I made. I had full sway. They didn't try to sway my opinion one way or the other.

Then later on, I became... I want to get to this point of how the civil rights and civil liberties became [inaudible] I realized that there actually could not be civil rights unless there are civil liberties, people [inaudible]. Martin and Ralph had much hesitation had to do with it. I was always 01:38:00a free spirit. When I was elected the president of Southern Council Education Fund this streaming from Jackson Daily News.

As I recall, I was on one of my trips going back to Cincinnati and [inaudible] had come from Jackson, Mississippi. He was the NAACP membership chairman, and he had his blue streamer, showing it to me. He said, "Man, look at that." Negro path ahead is coming in front. That's what it says, green paper with a black stream.

I said, "Yeah, I know." He said, "Well, yeah, you get out of there as quick as 01:39:00you can." I didn't come [inaudible]. You also must remember that at this time, NAACP has a lot of my cases. He couldn't wait to get to Atlanta, because of [inaudible]. At this time they hadn't built the new airport yet. You had to get on the bus and go around, and whatnot. [inaudible] I went and sat down, and he was like, "Yeah, yeah, Roy. I left the paper. It's all over the papers, Roy. Yeah, he's here now." I said, "You talked to Roy?" He said, "Yeah." I said, "Let me talk to Roy," because I know you have to take an issue here. I went to the front. I said, "Hi, Roy." They answer me and I said, "You know, in my [inaudible] I always ask y'all how is my neck, and who how you're getting along." They had too many cases for me. I said, "Well, I hear [inaudible]. You know I've been elected to head the Southern Council 01:40:00Education Fund." "Yeah, yeah."

I said, "And, of course, I understand that y'all have a lot of cases for me and I will understand it if you feel that you cannot defend me because I took it and I knew what I was doing." Roy was funny. He said, "Oh, yeah. Any man that's segregated, you know we're opposite." There was never anymore.

HUNTLEY: That was it.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Never any more hesitation from him. Then we had, as I recall, our convention in Louisville that same year.

HUNTLEY: Southern Conference?



SHUTTLESWORTH: Either board meeting or the convention. I forget which time. Martin Luther King and Ralph, I knew I had to be straight out with them about it. So as I recall in Louisville at that time, we went to the airport and King 01:41:00and Abernathy and all coming over. Mahalia Jackson was there. We were going to this meeting. I remember in getting on the expressway, the car we were in struck another car and kept moving.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I said to Martin, "Now, Martin, this is nuts. Nothing about it." Martin was in the front seat. Ralph was in the back seat and Mahalia Jackson, I believe, was over there. As I have said, I always believe in facing an issue and heading on. I think people make a terrible mistake when you know something is amiss or somebody has a question that you don't address. You can do it more aggressively if you bring it up than you defending yourself. I said to Martin, to Ralph since we were in the back, I said, "Ralph, you know I'm head of the Southern Council Education Fund." "Yeah, I heard that. You get out of there as 01:42:00quick as you can."

I said, "Well, I didn't get in to get out of it." I said, "In fact, I'm coming up now to resign." I knew they couldn't do all that. I quit talking, and I said, "Oh, yeah, Martin? You know I accepted the presidency of the Southern Council Education Fund." "Yeah, I heard that." "Now, it's coming up so I can resign, because I don't want to embarrass you."

He said, "Oh, no, Fred. Nothing like that. We're together."

I said, "Well, that's fine, because I want you to know that. I've been telling Ralph that I didn't get in to get out of it, and I think we better to support each other, people who stand up for their rights and they're harassed, they'll have us done the same way. The only difference is we're black." Martin said, "Oh, no. We're all together." I said, "Well, I just wanted to know, and I just wanted you to know I'm prepared to resign if you think I should, but I don't want to embarrass SCLC."


You see, before that I had already, with Anne and Carl, we had started sending joint statements to the president of the United States. They had, Ann and them, knew all these auxiliaries were fighting, grassroots organizations. Martin had a big hesitation when he had to sign, but with my [inaudible], that broke the ice. You take really the Greensboro piece, the [inaudible] piece, Martin is dead now and Joe Lowry was the president. I took the position that the Klan had no right to stop other folks. Somebody from the office told me that Joe had said that I shouldn't have made that statement. I said, "Well, Martin Luther King wouldn't have agreed that the Klan had the right to deny other people entry, so I'm going." That meant Joe had to come, so that I would make... There 01:44:00were two reasons that we were able, not me along, but we were able to link civil rights and civil liberties. Of interest to Birmingham people is you must remember that Anne and Carl Braden, I gave them the right of coming to [inaudible] and speak to the black meal when Bull Connor was threatening to arrest everybody. I never will forget. All those new pilgrims at this church. I had Anne Braden come in and speak. The house was packed. I said, "No, Bull Connor thinks he's running Birmingham, but somebody get a picture of this because [inaudible] Bull, I'm kissing a white woman." I kissed her in front of all the room.

Then it came to the meeting, of course. These were done so people could see if you can really stand up and be men and women or die. We had to fight for black and white people working together, and that's what's needed in Birmingham even now. As much as we have problems with it, we need white people, white ministers, 01:45:00certainly more than anything else, to talk to white people about justice, about freedom, about accepting us whether we're black, and vice versa. You're not going to let black people teach things. White people need to teach white people. This is the time. The past behind us, and this institution, this civil rights institution, is one of the greatest things, I think, that has been established in Birmingham so that we can understand our past and white folks should not forget segregation no more than Negroes should forget the fact that they were slaves.

HUNTLEY: That's right. After 1965...

SHUTTLESWORTH: I haven't said a lot about the revelation. You asked me, but we got off on that. Go ahead.

HUNTLEY: After '65, we were talking about that...


HUNTLEY: The movement simply became more restless. You had SNCC who had become 01:46:00more aggressive, and they changed their language to non-violent protest.


HUNTLEY: To Student National Coordinating Committee, and Black Panther party was...

SHUTTLESWORTH: Black power came up.

HUNTLEY: Black power came up. How did that impact upon the movement?

SHUTTLESWORTH: You must remember, at the time, and I was right there at the beginning, at the time of the [inaudible] march was when the black power enunciation became so rampant and pervasive. I would always speak ahead of Ralph, and Ralph would introduce Martin. We'd start on that Mississippi road and Stokely Carmichael would chant this black power. It was really bothersome to Martin, but we had to stand our ground and move on.

Now, we had a relationship. We never had open arguments about it, and everybody 01:47:00knew my position. I was not for black power. I was for power for all people, but I wasn't against these people who enunciated it, because they were saying that we was old hat, and suffering a long time without gaining appreciable gains in this country. We understood that, but we supported these students and the younger people's objectives at all times. I don't think there was ever a time when we went against what they were doing, and Martin would say, "I cannot endorse violence as a way of doing something," but that didn't stop it. It was almost it gave Stokely and others a chance to see, to get the contrast on. You 01:48:00know, right now anything that's contrasting hits the press, no matter what it is.

HUNTLEY: In '66, '67, Dr. King, in 1967, he made his first speech against the war in Vietnam. How did that ring? I know with SNCC, because they had been trying to get him to talk about the war and against it, how did that sit with others in the movement?

SHUTTLESWORTH: In the NAACP and many others, really, didn't take it as well as you would have thought, although generally they knew that war is wrong. You remember, our economy was built on the war. Martin felt it was necessary to come out with it. SNCC and the others, this was back when they were saying it because 01:49:00the goods were going into the war, was taking up a lot of other things, and still does.


SHUTTLESWORTH: A lot of us in the movement with Martin that that he was taking a bold chance. I have always felt, though, that truth has to be told somehow now. When and how it is done may be better done in one moment than another, but I knew the truth of what he was saying. I knew that the government was not going to look with favor as it had. First of all, to begin with, the government was afraid of us. We weren't attacking them. We were trying to get justice within the system. Them Martin felt the necessity at the end. He'd been speaking about 01:50:00injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

Then I think there were a lot of people, and you must remember now, there was a lot of people talked to Martin that I did not know. I'm not the sponsor of everything that Dr. Martin Luther King said, but there were people of all sorts and all persuasions and all ideas that could get audience with him. Him being perhaps thrown in the position of being the chief spokesman, the articulator, because he could articulate what people feel, is a big burden on him. He had to fight, I'm sure, against many things. I though the was essentially right, and there were people on our own board who really disapproved vehemently.


HUNTLEY: Was he speaking for the SCLC or for Martin Luther King?

SHUTTLESWORTH: He was speaking basically for Martin Luther King, and he felt like as a person, he had to make that [inaudible] because it wasn't the board's decision. He said what he felt and so forth. Then the other thing you must realize is that every man will stand on his own conviction before God. He really takes your having come out from this or that. You ought to have a central conviction, and your devotion ought to be what God says first.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think the Acts of the Apostles set an example to, the early church Fathers. We ought to pay God rather than man.

HUNTLEY: At that time also he started moving toward the poor people's campaign.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yes. As you know, he died in the [inaudible] before that 01:52:00actually happened. He was moving into it and Johnson had launched the War on Poverty. I think the seeds of it came out of that. You've got to look at history and governmental programs are set up on an order that it has to have a structure. Well, many times the structure takes more than the fruits for the people down here. Maybe some of the conservatism even now would be good, and criticism, but I think constructive criticism would have talked about eliminating moving the excesses of the poverty program and making it so that it 01:53:00come down so that the people who are on the threshold of falling will be more benefited, even as right at this moment, the welfare thing that's going to be turned back to the states, it's going to create a terrific disability for a lot of people who are trying, because if you don't provide jobs for the people to get off welfare, they can't. If you limit their time, that's going to have to be revisited.

Then the other thing is that you give jobs, jobs that are making five or six dollars an hour. You can't pay the rent and child care and all of that. That's going to have to be provided. There's always things that when government structures are set up, and I hope that the government will follow through and see to it that the states do what they do with compassion and with some degree 01:54:00of meticulosity, but we must bear in mind that states' rights cannot go back to becoming the way it was before the Civil Rights campaign.

HUNTLEY: Where were you the day that Dr. King was assassinated?

SHUTTLESWORTH: It was a Thursday as I recall. I was in my office because I was to, as I said before, we [inaudible] go in. We couldn't stay all the time. He had called me, I believe it was, the last time we talked maybe a day or two before that, or either the week before. He had talked about the Memphis situation. Many times, the staff would be talking about things before I got it, because we weren't together all of the time. He would call whenever he felt as if I'm needed or we're going to get into a situation that's sustained where all 01:55:00of us, and sometimes all of our [inaudible] would be getting together, and then again if he couldn't be there and he's somewhere else, I could come in and Ralph and other people, all of course exalting and giving support to the local people. This is what I insisted on, that we shouldn't just go in and do our thing. It had to be a thing that you could get the local people together on.

It was in '67 that I really came to that conclusion and said to Martin, "You cannot have people dividing under you, your leadership with you and yourself. You're one group out of several movements. I think that we have to be careful of this." He said to me on this Memphis thing that we've got to go in and that it 01:56:00was a sort of a... He would organize all he could for the Poor People's Campaign, but then what better than for garbage workers, people who spend their lives getting rid of our refuse, which would kill us if we didn't get rid of it, and how important were they.

I told him, "I don't need to be sold on this." We're fighting for the little people, and we're fighting for the right of people to work, and despite excesses and unionism in some places, you still have to find the people to be together and people come together. It wasn't no problem, but we had talked on that and one or two other things that we talked about. I had no idea that he was this close to death, but you know, here again I have to say that the speech that he articulated [inaudible] to some degree and some form, both [inaudible] and most of us that he led had said practically the same thing, 01:57:00because you feel the closeness to the judge. You have to remember that everybody thought that I would be the first one to be killed, and I did, too. Dr. King thought that I would be the first one to be killed. He and Ralph, we talked about it in meetings. Several times we'd talk about bravery and Dr. King would be like, "Fred, you're braver than... You're the bravest person." I said, "It doesn't matter about that. It's what you see and you have to do," and to a degree on a different scale, he felt the same way, even by speaking out against the war. We all felt that we were expendable, but it ought to be doing God's will. I think that speech that he made that's been played at his funeral, I just 01:58:00want to do God's will.

HUNTLEY: Drum major.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Drum major, but he said I want to do God's will. That's what, if people could sort of bring in the midst of much of what we do, at least bring the discussion, bring in our discussion the thought of where is God's place. How does this relate to that? I think leadership Alabama, leadership Birmingham, leadership this, we ought to be bringing in justice, I say. When we're planning buildings, because buildings aren't people, we're planning our landscaping there, where is our justice? How is it going to affect? That ought to be discussed. That needs to be discussed. You know, as far as we could go, doctor, 01:59:00we've got a lot of [inaudible] to cover here.

HUNTLEY: That's right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: If we uncover, we'll be majoring some things that may be minor in terms of importance. The internet does that and shows how fast we can go. We don't even discover. We don't know the benefits of nor the dangers of a lot of stuff that we've done. It seems to me that brotherhood and justice and how it's going to affect people, even governmental controls that we talked about, that ought to be discussed. It ought to be discussed with the contractors or business people and even the young people who are black and becoming entrepreneurs and so forth. It ought to be a thing that's included in our thoughts, because if you 02:00:00don't think about something, you're [inaudible]. That's a challenge, I think, of our moment now.

HUNTLEY: I skipped over a very important question.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, got ahead.

HUNTLEY: This is your interview, but that was the march from Selma to Montgomery.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yeah. That was they must remember that day. First march where they was beaten up. That was done mostly by John Lewis and SNCC. That's wasn't SCLC base that did that. That got them in [inaudible]. SNCC and John Lewis had broken with the so-called radical wing of SNCC, but they... You must remember that some of the students, some of the radical part, were still 02:01:00challenging people in Montgomery and all around. They were beaten up. So that the march at Selma, and I don't know all of the doings of Selma, but I know John Lewis was in there, and whenever John Lewis was in there, he was going to be committed to non-violence. I didn't really know because I probably would have planned to have been in it, but I'm glad to know that people can do things without me. I don't have to be in everything. The older I get, the more conscious I am that my time is short anyway.

HUNTLEY: You were there for the second part.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yeah. The second part is the one that I know about. I know how the government was trying to dissuade us and all, but I'm saying so this march went on. Well, then we had to. We had to, like these students in Nashville, came on this Freedom Ride. If we would have been true, we could not 02:02:00have been true to what we claimed to be and [inaudible]