Print Culture of the Civil Rights Movement, 1950-1980


The Civil Rights Movement in the United States coincided with rapid changes in a variety of news and communications media. The expansion of television and documentary filmmaking brought images of the struggles of African Americans and those who supported civil rights into the homes of the American populace. However, control of the tone and content of electronic media was not always in the hands of those who were being documented. It was the democratization of various printed media that allowed civil rights leaders, workers, and organizations to circulate their combined, and sometimes contradictory, voices.

This digital collection is an expansion of the exhibition The Revolution Will Not Be...: Print Culture of the Civil Rights Movement held at the Amistad Research Center in 2011. As the nation’s oldest, largest, and arguably most comprehensive independent archives/library documenting the modern Civil Rights Movement, the Amistad Research Center has brought together relevant documents from a variety of archival collections, including the papers of activists such as John O’Neal Papers, Fannie Lou Hamer Papers, Clarie Collins Harvey, Connie Harse, John Lee Tilley, as well as the Eric Steele Wells collection, the Center’s own ephemera collection, and other sources. This project highlights the newspapers, posters, broadsides, pamphlets, fliers, and other printed ephemera produced by student and community groups, leading civil rights organizations, and individuals, which documented a revolutionary era.

Students, teachers, researchers, and others are encouraged to contact the Center about this digital collection and related materials on the Civil Rights Movement held at Amistad. For more information, please visit the Center’s website (


We Declare W.A.R.: War Against Oppression
Brochure produced by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and the National Welfare Rights Organization in calling for a "nationwide war against repression."
We Have to Fight These Battles Together
Flyer invitation to talk by Fannie Lou Hamer regarding civil rights in Mississippi.
What the Negro Wants in 1952
Pamphlet issued by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People outlining a state of political objectives issued following a meeting of "national Negro organizations."
Where is Democracy
Brochure outlining the aims and objectives of the Congress of Racial Equality
Work-Study Project
Brochure produced by COFO describing a work-study project sponsored by SNCC and Tougaloo College to encourage participation in voter registation efforts in Mississippi.
Yahweh says Don't Worship White People
Circular attributed to Yahweh Ben Yahweh and published by the Temple of Love in Miami, Florida. It reads in part "Our Great, Good and Terrible Black God, Yahweh, is here to save the blind, deaf, dumb, ignorant and dead so-called black man of America from the Evil Plans of our white enemies."
Yahweh Supports Black Bank
Circular attributed to Yahweh Ben Yahweh and published by the Temple of Love in Miami, Florida. It reads in part "The followers of Yahweh will systematically deposit over $1 million dollars in The Peoples Bank, Miami's black bank, headed by Sonny Wright, a black man."
You Can Help
Booklet produced by SNCC to solicit assistance and participation. Contains facts about SNCC how to organize and operate a Friends of SNCC Committee; an appeal for funds; merchandise from SNCC; fund raising plans; and a list of friends of SNCC groups.
You Can Help Too
Flyer produced by SNCC to solicit support in the form of donated vehicles and trading stamps.