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Roy Wilkins Arrested in Mississippi

June 1, 1963 - Roy Wilkins (center), 61, executive secretary of the NAACP, was arrested in Jackson, Miss. today for picketing the F.W. Woolworth Company and booked on a charge of restraint of trade — a felony. He and two others arrested with him — Medgar Evers, Mississippi field secretary for the NAACP, and Mrs. Helen Wilcher — were released shortly afterward on $1,000 bonds each. “The demonstrations have just started,” Wilkins told a news conference after his release. “I understand the city says it can go on for two years. I feel the Negroes can too.” A few hours later, police swooped down on a Negro mass march, encircled it, and arrested truckloads of demonstrators. Less than an hour after the arrest of Mr. Wilkins, Mayor Allen Thompson and the City Commission agreed to three of eight Negro demands. The agreements were to hire Negro policemen to patrol the Negro section, to hire Negro crossing guards for Negro schools, and to upgrade Negro city employees.


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