Heritage – James Howard Meredith

James Meredith

  • James Howard Meredith was born on June 25, 1933 in Kosciusko, Mississippi.
  • Meredith is a former serviceman in the United States Air Force serving from 1951 to 1960.
  • He attended Jackson State University from 1960 to 1961.
  • On October 1, 1962; James Howard Meredith became the first African-American admitted to the University of Mississippi. Meredith was admitted after previously being denied admission three times. 
  •  Meredith went on to graduate with a degree in political science in 1963.
  • From 1964 to 1965, Meredith attended the University of Ibadan in Nigeria and earned a postgraduate degree in economics.
  • He published his memoir, Three Years in Mississippi, in 1966.
  • To encourage voter registration amongst African-Americans, Meredith organized a civil rights march, Meredith March Against Fear, extending from Memphis, Tennessee to Jackson, Mississippi during which he was shot and wounded by a sniper on June 6, 1966.
  • Initiated his political career as a Republican, unsuccessfully running against Adam Clayton Powell, Jr.
  • Meredith also received his law degree from Columbia University in 1968.
  • Amidst controversy, from 1989 to 1991, he became an adviser to southern conservative United States Senator Jesse Helms.
  • Currently residing in Jackson, Mississippi at the age of 80.

 

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