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Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965$
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Davis W. Houck and David E. Dixon

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781604731071

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604731071.001.0001

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Modjeska M. Simkins

Modjeska M. Simkins

December 15, 1960, Bill of Rights Dinner, Washington, D.C.

(p.139) Modjeska M. Simkins
Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965

Davis W. Houck

David E. Dixon

University Press of Mississippi

Born on December 5, 1899, in Columbia, South Carolina, Mary Modjeska Monteith Simkins was one of the organizers to work on the Clarendon County component of the 1954 Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education. Simkins also founded the Victory Savings Bank as a means to fund organizers’ attempts to integrate public schools. She was investigated by the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) for her alleged ties to the Communist Party, resulting in her removal from her position with the NAACP. On December 15, 1960, Simkins spoke at a gathering in honor of the Bill of Rights in Washington D.C. This chapter reproduces Simkins’s speech, in which she discussed the importance and content of the Bill of Rights and how it was being undermined by the HUAC. Simkins also talked about McCarthyism and asked why the NAACP and others should spend millions of dollars in an effort to secure the rights which already belong to every American.

Keywords:   speech, Mary Modjeska Monteith Simkins, Brown v. Board of Education, Victory Savings Bank, public schools, House Un-American Activities Committee, Communist Party, NAACP, Bill of Rights, McCarthyism

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