Hosea Williams | Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum

Hosea Williams

Hosea Williams

The Beginnigns of the Boycott: Newspaper Article

NAACP Sunday Mass Meeting
"NAACP Slaps Easter Bunny at Mass Meeting"
From Vol 14 The Herald April 2, 1960

Nearly two thousand enthusiastic Negroes filled to overflowing the vast auditorium of the Greater St. James A.M.E. Church for the third mass meeting of the NAACP in support of economic freedom. The twenty-five young persons arrested and subsequently tried in City Police Court were on hand for introduction, as well as the group picketing downtown stores in protest of the lunch counter affair.

Hosea Williams, who has been acting chairman of the association’s committee of legal redress drew a pledge from all present that they would withhold all Easter purchases from downtown stores, in an effort to realize full integration of all facilities offered by these stores. Williams urged that everyone recognize picket lines formed by the association at downtown stores and not enter the store for any purpose.

The appeal for funds for legal action brought a public collection of more than seven hundred dollars and a number of NAACP memberships that represented both new members and increased donations on old memberships. The two hour session also heard in addition to Wesley W. Law and Williams, Charles Daley, president of the Savannah Youth Council of the NAACP, who expressed doubt the bi-racial committee formed by the Mayor. Daley humorously stated that unless given complete freedom, he would prefer “a nice funeral.”

Hosea Williams, local and national Civil Rights leader, speaks about the compassionate community response seen in Sunday Mass Meetings that helped Savannah residents maintain their successful months long boycott against white businesses.