The Mississippi Burning

Essay by eirikfs February 2006

download word file, 2 pages 5.0

What - A trial where some members of the Ku Klux Klan in Missisippi were charged for the killings of three civil rights activists(James Chaney, Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman).

When - The trial took place in October 1967, but some men were prosecuted later as well. For example one of the ringleaders: Edgar Ray Killen, who was found guilty on three counts of manslaughter on June 21, 2005, and was sentenced to a maximum of 60 years in prison. The activists were killed in 1967.

Where - The trial took place in Mississippi court house. The killings took place while the civil rights activists were driving "home" at Highway 16.

Who -

Here is a list of the key persons in the trial and investigation.

The victims: James Chaney, Andrew Goodman & Michael Schwerner

Key defendants: Cecil Price, Lawrence Rainey, Wayne Roberts, Edgar Ray Killen, Sam Bowers

Prosecutor: John Doar

Fed investigator: Joseph Sullivan

Fed agent: John Proctor

Prosecution witnesses: James Jordan & Delmar Dennis.

The judge: William Cox

Why (killings) - The most considerable reason why the three men were killed, was hatred. KKK hated the blacks and wanted white supremacy in the USA. They think black and white people should not be considered as equal. The civil rights activists were going to help black people to vote, and KKK did not accept that, which result in killing.

Why (trial) - The Killings of three the Civil Rights workers. Sam Bowers was an "Imperial Wizard" of the KKK, who announced the assassination. The First attempt to kill Schwerner was unsuccessful, but resulted in burning Mont Zion Church.

Later, Deputy sheriff Price, who was a member of the KKK, saw the three men, Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman, and James Chaney in a wagon on Highway...