Mrs. Fannie Lou Hamer was born on this day in 1917 in Montgomery County, Mississippi. The story of Mrs. Hamer and the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) should be central to any study of U.S. history. Hamer and thousands more Mississippians took one of the boldest moves ever in U.S. history to fight for a democratic process in national elections.Read more »
Teaching Activity. By Julian Hipkins III, Deborah Menkart, Sara Evers, and Jenice View.
Role play on the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) for grades 7+. Introduces students to a vital example of small “d” democracy in action.
Teaching Activity. Essay by Howard Zinn and lesson by Bill Bigelow. 17 pages.
Students research and share stories about unsung heroes in U.S. history.
Teaching Guide and Website. Edited by Deborah Menkart, Alana D. Murray, and Jenice L. View. 2004. 576 pages.
Provides lessons and articles for K-12 educators on how to go beyond a heroes approach to the Civil Rights Movement, with a focus on education, economics, labor, youth, women, and culture.
Article. By Julian Hipkins III and Deborah Menkart. 2014. If We Knew Our History Series.
At the 1964 Democratic National convention, former sharecropper Fannie Lou Hamer and the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party made a dramatic challenge to the all-white delegation. Their actions rocked the political landscape.
Book – Non-fiction. By Charles M. Payne. 1995. 506 pages.
The people’s history of the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi.
Book – Non-fiction. By John Dittmer. 1995. 560 pages.
A detailed, grassroots description of the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi.
Book – Non-fiction. By Wesley C. Hogan. 2009. 463 pages.
An innovative study of what the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) accomplished and, more importantly, how it fostered significant social change in such a short time.
Book – Non-fiction. By Charles E. Cobb, Jr. 2008. 388 pages.
An educational travel guide to historic sites of the Civil Rights Movement.
Film. Produced by Henry Hampton. Blackside. 1987. 360 min.
Comprehensive documentary history of the Civil Rights Movement.
Book – Non-fiction. By Kay Mills. 2007. 390 pages.
First-hand accounts of Fannie Lou Hamer’s emergence as a leader of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s.
Book – Non-fiction. By Carole Boston Weatherford, Illustrated by Ekua Holmes. 2015. 45 pages.
Illustrated biography of Fannie Lou Hamer, an unsung hero of the Civil Rights Movement.
Film. Directed Connie Field and Marilyn Mulford. Written by Michael Chandler. 1994. 110 min.
The story of the Mississippi freedom movement in the early 1960s.