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The Scholar and the StruggleLawrence Reddick's Crusade for Black History and Black Power$
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David A. Varel

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469660967

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469660967.001.0001

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The Nonviolent Crusade from Montgomery to Madras

The Nonviolent Crusade from Montgomery to Madras

(p.122) 5 The Nonviolent Crusade from Montgomery to Madras
The Scholar and the Struggle

David A. Varel

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter tracks the most momentous years of Reddick’s life as he became a professor of history at Alabama State College in Montgomery and emerged as a major leader within the southern civil rights movement. He helped guide and document the Montgomery Improvement Association during the Montgomery Bus Boycott, and he then did the same for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, serving as a founding member of its nine-member executive committee and as the organization’s official historian. Reddick also became a close mentor to Martin Luther King Jr. during these years, and he wrote the first biography of King, Crusader Without Violence (1959), helped King write a memoir on the boycott, Stride Toward Freedom (1958), and traveled with King and his wife Coretta Scott King to India. After supporting the local student sit-in movement in 1960, Alabama Governor John Patterson had him fired from Alabama State College, thus symbolizing his significant stature within the civil rights movement.

Keywords:   Alabama State College, Montgomery Improvement Association, Montgomery Bus Boycott, Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Martin Luther’s King Jr., Crusader Without Violence, Stride Toward Freedom, India, John Patternson, Sit-in movement (1960)

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