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2020-11-22 20:49:19
Kennedy, John F.
Typed letter signed, as president,; "John Kennedy", December 6, 1962, on White House letterhead, with original mailing envelope and other related documents JFK's TURNING POINT ON CIVIL RIGHTS
Washington DC, 1962. Fine. Single leaf, folded once; loosely inserted together with other items in spiral bound album. Kennedy writes to express his personal thanks to a federal Border Patrol officer pressed into service at the University of Mississippi to provide protection when James Meredith was registered as the first African American student there. Meredith's enrollment at Ole Miss was vehemently opposed by Mississippi governor Ross Barnett and his cohort of segregationists as well as violent white racists among the student body. When Meredith was escorted onto the Oxford, Miss. campus by national guard troops, tensions grew rapidly and, when the national guard units withdrew, quickly escalated into a full-scale riot resulting in two deaths and numerous serious injuries. Scrambling to address the unfolding situation from the White House, the president and his brother, Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, worked the phones constantly and ultimately had to send regular army units to Ole Miss to protect Meredith. In this letter, the president addressed Maurice Cruickshank, a Border Patrol Inspector from Buffalo, New York, who was sent to Mississippi along with several members of his unit, saying in part: "Your actions that difficult night were in the highest traditions of the dedicated men and women who serve in law enforcement. The courage and dedication which you demonstrated while in great personal danger prevented a serious and tragic incident from becoming a disaster for our country. Had you failed, our country would have suffered irreparable damage. . ." Ever mindf … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: Locus Solus Rare Books [United States]
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