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Andrew Young Interviewee: Atlanta, Georgia, 1981 May 31 [Box 140, Item 3, Side 1]
Topics include: Dorothy Cotton's comments in My Soul Is Rested on women in the Civil Rights Movement, Martin Luther King, Jr.'s problems with women, Ella Baker, the decision making processes of Baptist preachers, decision making within SCLC (Southern Christian Leadership Converence), King's decision making process, Hosea Williams, the involvement of children in the Birmingham (Alabama) Movement, Jim Lawson, assassination (of Martin Luther King Jr.) in Memphis, other cities during the time of Birmingham, conditions in the Albany (Georgia), Americus jails, Diane Nash, Randolph Blackwell, Young's mayoral campaign, and Fred Shuttlesworth.
00:00 - Tom Dent interviews Andrew Young, who comments on Dorothy Cottons comments about women in the Civil Rights Movement in My Soul Is Rested. He thinks her comment was accurate. Martin Luther King, Jr. talked to her about everything. Young thinks King's problems with women stemmed from his strong mother. He had a problem with Ella Baker.03:30 - Strong women led the Movement until King came along. Uretta Adair was another strong woman. Young's mother was strong, but his father was less domineering. Both King's parents were very strong-willed.05:52 - Young talks about King's feelings about his family dynamics. King felt that his brother A.D. destroyed himself because he could not cope with their parents. His sister Christine took the role that her mother took and manipulated. Coretta and 'Daddy' King have a healthy relationship because they argue in the open, as she did with Martin.07:24 - Dent discusses Baker's comments in My Soul Is Rested. Young says she had more of a problem with Wyatt Tee Walker than with King. The decision making processes of Baptist preachers.10:44 - SCLC [Southern Christian Leadership Conference] always ended up with King's decision. They advised him, but his reputation was on the line. Young was put in the conservative advisory role. Hosea Williams and James Bevel competed to be the most radical. King got upset with Young when he did not fill that role.14:40 - Young only had problems when people would gang up on him. He did not have problems with the Baptist way of doing things. He knew they were right because they were successful before he even joined them. He was careful about his suggestions. 15:50 - He was only upset in Albany, AL when King ran off on an injunction. King felt personally betrayed by the Kennedy administration and Burke Marshall. 17:20 - Young, Cotton, and Vincent Harding thought King should be there planning instead of leaving. More on Harding. He was sent to Albany by the Mennonite Church as a pastor to the Movement to protect the nonviolent faith. There were also Quakers and members of the Church of the Brethren. Glenn Smiley was there as an activist. They also came to Birmingham, AL. They were mostly whites and slightly paternalistic.20:09 - King left to go to a fish fry. He did not take himself too seriously, which was a strength. People would sometimes be disgusted with him for it, not understanding. 22:38 - They discuss comments Hosea Williams made about feeling like Young and Bevel were always on one side of an issue and he was on the other. Young understands the comments, but does not think he ever appreciated the times he was on Williams' side. Bevel enjoyed intellectual argument in a way Williams did not.
Young, Andrew, 1932-
Civil Rights Movement
King, Martin Luther, Jr., 1929-1968
Tulane University Digital Library
Amistad Research Center
Audiocassette, mono. 16-bit
Box 140, Item 3, Side 1, Tom Dent collection, Amistad Research Center at Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana
Physical rights are retained by the Amistad Research Center. Copyright is retained in accordance with U.S. copyright laws.