Ironicschmoozer’s Weblog

Can You Help–UU People & Information needed for Civil Rights UU Legacy Project

The Unitarian Universalist Living Legacy Project is seeking your help in
locating someone who apparently was related to your congregation in 1964-65.
We are attempting to contact Unitarian Universalist veterans of the Civil
Rights Movement to make them aware of a Gathering of such veterans we are
planning for March 30-April 1 in Asheville, North Carolina.  (Please see the
attached description of that event for more details on what we hope to

In January of 1965 a team of four staff members of the UUA and UUSC traveled
through Mississippi.  They compiled a list of 36 students and faculty who
took part in the Mississippi Summer Project (“Freedom Summer”) and/or other
civil rights activity.  We are trying to locate those people to invited them
to this Gathering next spring.

Margaret Benes and Jonathan Else were two of those people.  We realize that
in this mobile world these people have almost certainly moved since 1965,
but we wanted to ask for data you may have which may help us locate them.
Some of the questions we can think of are given below.  Please answer any
further questions we haven’t been clever enough to frame but that might help
us in our task.

In 1964-65 was these people members?    “friends” of the congregation?
students in an area college or university?

Do congregational records or the memories of long-term members suggest where
this person moved if/when this person left your area?  (Even a generalized
impression may help if we have to resort to a Google search.)  Or is the
person still in your general area?   Do you, miraculously, have an exact or
approximate address for this person?

Do you have any data on possible name change for this person due to
marriage, gender reassignment, or other cause?

Are there other sources you suggest we check with for data on this

If we succeed in locating this person, would you like for us to suggest that
they re-connect with your congregation so that you can learn more about how
you related to their 1964 experience in Mississippi?

Please send whatever data you can gather (or a note that you could turn up
nothing) to the Rev. Gordon Gibson.


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