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Negro Leaders Promise Intensified Integration Campaign in Birmingham

Apr. 4, 1963 - In Birmingham, Alabama, an attack by the city’s Negro community on racial segregation there continued today. Negro leaders have promised an intensified campaign to achieve at least a minimum of desegregation in one of the South’s main citadels of white supremacy. Dr. Martin Luther King and Dr. Ralph Abernathy, leaders of the Southern Christian Leadership Council of Atlanta, flew in last night. They told a rally of 300 Negroes at the St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church that they were there to stay until “the battle is won.” A new city administration, elected Tuesday, is believed to be more ready to compromise than was the old administration led by Safety Commissioner T. Eugene “Bull” Connor. But a court fight over the new administration’s right to take office is pending and, in any event, the new officials would not assume the reins at City Hall until April 15. Mr. Connor is showing no signs of compromise. He told reporters this morning: “You can rest assured that I will fill the jail if they [the Negroes] violate the laws as long as I am at City Hall.”

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