Civil Rights March

In front of Oak Grove A.M.E. Church, Hwy 16 East beyond Benton, Mississippi

In June 1966 a march for voting rights, en route from Yazoo City to Jackson, camped here while passing through Benton.  The marchers, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., were provided food and water by members of the Oak Grove A.M.E. Church and by members of the Woods family, who owned property next to the church.

  1. I was16 years of age during this March. I was one of the younger participants, from Sardis, MS. We slept in tents between the church and the cemetery. We left there, went to Canton, MS, where we were teargassed while attempting to set up tents on a then black school campus.

    • Thank you for sharing your personal experience, Mr. Wilson. I am sure our readers will be interested to hear as well.

      • Always glad to share the experience. There were several other teen young men from Panola county in north MS,Harry Dunnigan, Bruce Rhea, Eddie Lloyd,Gene Nelson and myself, plus the late mr John Byers. We marched first from our hometown of Sardis, to Batesville,MS (Nelson is from Como, MS)that Friday, and we joined the March for the duration on that Sunday at Courtland, MS. We knew that it was a very important event, but did not foresee the historical significance of it. But the biggest surprise was, that our parents allowed us to participate in it! Our ages ranged from 15 to 18yrs.

  2. Yazoo City had a tough time organizing due to intimidation.

  3. My name is Tychicus Julius I had just graduated from Tennessee State University. I had the great pleasure to March along beside Dr.King and other. I also went to Canton,Ms. I knew we had God on our side. I later started to teach math in Canton school district. My heart was helping other. And my views remains the same.

  4. No one talks about the speech by Dr king at campernella park in yazoo city and how we spent the night at the silver slipper before marching down to the courthouse the next day and being blocked by the fire trucks at maynie street and third street

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