Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Fred Shuttlesworth, December 6, 1997

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
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FOSL: Testing. Testing, one, two, three. Testing. Let's just start, then.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Go right ahead.

FOSL: And can you remember when you met Anne?

SHUTTLESWORTH: (laughs) It's difficult to pinpoint the days this late- -they--you didn't keep, uh, an exact time or the date or wh-, exact what--but it was back around--it was back in the fifties. I would say, uh, either in '54--could have been as la-, early as '54.

FOSL: Well--

SHUTTLESWORTH: ----------(??)

FOSL: --let me jar your memory. According to what she said, and then you tell me if you think that she's earl-, that she--that it might have been earlier than that. She remembers the first time you all met in June of '57 when she and Carl rode the train down to Birmingham and met with you and Jim Dombrowski at the Gaston Hotel.


SHUTTLESWORTH: That was '57?

FOSL: Fifty-seven. And their case was already over. And she said y'all were staying there because your home was being rebuilt after that Christmas bombing, I guess, was the year before. Is that--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Fifty-six, right.

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Uh, yeah, it--that, that's probably right. Now, I, I might have too much in my mind, uh, because I, I tie a lot around the '54 decision. One thing about, uh, my having met Martin Luther King, I think--okay, go ahead.

FOSL: Okay.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, so that's, that's all right. But I might have even met her before then. But if she feels like that was the first time, I would--

FOSL: Well, she has times--


FOSL: --when she is--pretty well remembers things, and then other things she doesn't remember at all. So I just wanted to check that out with you.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, I, I, I would think that, uh, I would go with her. But I, I'm, I'm--I have the feeling that I met her a little before then--'56, '57, '57--about right because we all got in the movement in '56.

FOSL: Right.


SHUTTLESWORTH: That's right. And the movement (??) had, had gone on for some months. That--she, she's probably right then.

FOSL: Okay. Had you heard about her case before you ever met her? Was that--I'm try--I'm trying to get a sense of how well known that case was outside of Louisville.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, it really wasn't, uh, known among, let us say, the black people as it probably should have. It wasn't a thing that was room talk--bedroom talk or--basically, it was not. I think I had, uh, heard of it peripherally.

FOSL: So how did that--was it--I guess it--maybe it was Dombrowski that got in touch with you? Do you remember?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Jim Dombrowski was the executive director of the Southern Conference Educational Fund. You know that background before that. I don't have to go into that. Then, uh, I think Jim was in town for something. I can't even remember what it was right now. He was 00:03:00meeting with somebody.

FOSL: Well, according to what she's told me, in that June '57 meeting, they were in town to meet with Aubrey to talk about hir-, hiring Anne and Carl to be field workers for them.


FOSL: And he came up from New Orleans. I don't know why they chose to meet in Birmingham. But maybe he wanted to meet with you at the same time.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think, I think, uh, that was his a p-, part of the primary reason because of the fact that--because later, soon after that, I be-, came on the board. I came on the board of, uh--of, uh, Southern Conference Educational Fund. I was on the board a few years before I served as president. I think that was--eh, and I always--I was impressed with Jim's, uh--his seemingly utter humility, his self- effacement.

FOSL: Yeah, I never met him. But everybody says that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: He, he was--he was a terrific person. You couldn't meet him without--and it was, uh--I think I always had--and I should say 00:04:00this to begin with so that you can get my feeling about Jim, Anne, and Carl--I learned of them before many others. To me, it was just as important to support and make sure that white people who were being, uh, brutalized by the system--whether by bombs or mobs or not--but they were humiliated, castigated, without jobs, red-baited. It was just as, as important for them to succeed and be recognized as it was for black folks. And I was moved, and especially because I, I felt like it was duty, my business, my, my calling to fight segregation. I felt like 00:05:00God had saved me for that. This was '57, you remember.

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And anybody would fight segregation, but especially white people who would be, uh, criticized and ostracized for just associating with us. Uh, and it was all for the truth. So I thought--and I have no hesitation in saying it--I've said it before that I thought Jim Dombrowski, Anne Braden, and Carl, and several others I met, Bishop Love, Aubrey Williams, and others, were some of the greatest Americans I've ever met. I think the country owes them and their struggle a debt of gratitude which it can never repay.

FOSL: Um-hm. Well, did you feel that kind of connection with them immediately on that--in that meeting--


FOSL: --at the Gaston Hotel?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I, I, I, I felt--you must remember that I was a pastor anyway.


FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And I would have been open to meeting people even if we had differences of perspective. Uh, and I was fighting hard then for c-, for civil rights. And--

FOSL: You probably needed--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I, I would have--

FOSL: --all the allies you could get.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I would have opened my arms to any person, especially any white people, because white people was the--were the missing link, missing content in the struggle at that time. And, and their being in the South made it more important to me that they be supported and that we would have a liaison, of course.

FOSL: Yeah, she tells me the story that y'all rode, I guess, in a taxi to the g-, to the Gaston Hotel, or from there to see your house or something. And I--


FOSL: --she says you turned to her and said, "You know, this is illegal what we're doing here."


SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, I told them you--we could go to jail. (laughs) By that time, jail--jails wouldn't--didn't bother me.

FOSL: (laughs) Right. Well, I guess it didn't bother them too much either.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I, I, I did tell them it's illegal for us to be riding in a taxi. Segregation was--you couldn't play ball. You couldn't do a whole lot. Well, you already know that. Uh, I, I do remember saying that night, "You know, you bringing something to my ----------(??)."

FOSL: (laughs) That stayed with her. Well, um, now, this isn't really relevant to her story, but did you have much in the way of white allies at all in Birmingham?


FOSL: I didn't think so.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Absolutely not.

FOSL: That's what I thought. Well, so w--what appealed to you about SCEF then?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, uh, as I said, the, the, the, the, uh--and they didn't have the problem of convincing me that, uh, the ----------(??) 00:08:00an arm (??) or something that needs ----------(??). They were being targeted by the segregationists just as I was. Uh, and I felt they're more important because they risked their lives to ally and, and, and, and be with black people, and openly do it, you see.

FOSL: Well, w-, what is it that you think that set you apart from other people? Like, there were a lot of black people who felt in some way like you did in Louisville, but they still shied away from them because of that whole red thing. They were very scared about that. What made you--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, you must remember that this, this burning took all fear that I had from any kind of a danger--seen or unseen--from me. And I had no hesitation to go anywhere, to walk--as you know, I 00:09:00was around Marxists many times and ----------(??) again. And surely I would be close to people that were white, uh, uh, people willing to be concerned about the movement. I would be with them. And I had no hesitation in being seen with them. And I know Anne told you about the time, or I'll tell ya, that back during those days, it was--of course, it was after this a little bit--and, and, um, we, we defied segregation. And I had Anne and Carl, both, to come and speak to the movement. And she'd tell you--I don't remember the exact dates--but I remember one time when we had Anne Braden. We were at, I believe, New Pilgrim House and Scripture (??). We had a packed house. And I said (laughs)--I said, "Now, I'm gonna do something tonight that hasn't been done. In this city, it's against the law." I said, "Tell Bull Connor, get your cameras ready," blah-blah-blah. "I'm, I'm--you're gonna see me kiss a white woman (laughs) right before that crowd." I'm sure she's 00:10:00told you that, or she will. But I thought that Anne and Carl were two of the most courageous Americans. I, I, I know people call me courageous. But, but, but to take it day-by-day, and to stay with it, and to stay contemplative and advocating for progress, uh, in the fight against segregation and discrimination, I think took more for, for them to do it than for me, you know. And, and, uh, I--many times, I feared for their safety (??).

FOSL: Sure.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And yet I have never seen either one of them flinch or draw up from going any place that they were supposed to be. And I've admired them for it.

FOSL: Well, I know you and Anne have been friends for forty-something 00:11:00years, so it's hard to think back. But can you remember what your first impressions of her were? I mean, just as a person, how did she come across to you?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, I thought she was a (laughs) lovely, young white woman, and not large, and very lovely. And, and, and, and, of course, Carl gave the rugged--

FOSL: Yeah, tell me what you--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --individualistic type--

FOSL: --thought about him.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --American male. Carl looked like he would, would fight if it came to fighting. (Fosl laughs) But I don't--I never heard him discussing it. Carl would say words, like when told ----------(??) the House Un-American Committee: "What I think is no damn business of this committee ----------(??)." He was strong. He would use very strong words. Of course, Anne would use them too, but in a different context.

FOSL: Yeah, could--I--can you describe that difference? Because she's talked a lot--I mean, she has that story that she'll tell that, you know, he would write, like, a half-page letter just cussing somebody out--


FOSL: --when she would stay up all night long writing a fifteen-page 00:12:00letter.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Write a fifteen-page explaining what she could have said in two. I tell Anne now--I used to tell her, now, we'll be in a meeting discussing things, and Anne--Anne is one person who'll contend that everybody ought to say everything he or--he wants to say, even if it--if it's not meaning anything. But she respects utterly a person's right to speak. And I have told her, and I've said so when I meet her (??), I said, "Anne, once we have won the case, don't defeat yourself." (laughs) But she's like that. And, and, and, and I would t-, tell her all the time--I said, "Anne, when you write me a letter, you write a book."

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And she tells me a lot of times, "Well, you're not gonna read all them lines." I said, "Well, I'll scan through there. (??)" But, uh--but she is a--she has a terrific personality. She tries to thoroughly explain. And sometimes I, I tell her, "I think you over-explain. I think sometimes you harm yourself." I even remember 00:13:00some of the meetings in the board, especially when I was, uh, on the board and, and even when I was at, at the--elected the president of the Conference. That's an interesting thing. Uh, Mississippi--uh, Daily World, isn't it--had a green sheet with a black stream (??), "Negro Pastor Heads Communist Front."

FOSL: Right. Yeah, I've seen that, I think.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah. Um, but she would, she would, she would contest for the right of anybody to continue to say what they want to say, even if they were arguing against what she said. Then many times, uh, she would be opposing this person. Her position would be diametrically opposite. And I--and, and, and I guess, because of that--I used to tell Martin and Ralph--Martin and Ralph never did hurry. Martin always would to tell me, "Fred, brevity is not a virtue." (laughs) So 00:14:00he'd leave the first two planes out (??). I miss fooling around with Martin and Ralph, ----------(??) around. But Anne was of the same temperament--not rushing, taking time to explain, to discuss. And she would argue for somebody to argue his point even if it's against a point that she's making. And I've said that to her. And I, I think if I had anything that I would wish that she didn't do, it was that.

FOSL: Right. (laughs)

SHUTTLESWORTH: But, but, uh, I would admire her for it. I used to tell Martin and Ralph--and even now, I say, well, I, I've faced the Klan-- you have to move, you know. Uh, the truth of the matter is I have never seen them disillusioned. That's amazing. And--

FOSL: You'd say that's true in all the time you've know them?

SHUTTLESWORTH: In all of the time that I've known Anne and Carl and 00:15:00Jim Dombrowski, they had that simple, continual plotting disposition to press forward for democracy. They might not have said everything everybody else was saying about it. They might not have been, uh, holding up the thing like Ronald Reagan, you know, they--

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: ------------(??). Because they, they, they were criticized. They, they, they really gave constructive criticism. But they always plotted for continual resistance to what--and, and then the main thing was their idea that whites and blacks are supposed to work together. And I think it was, uh, important for them that I came on the board, being a leader of this movement--

FOSL: I think that's true.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --particularly in Birmingham.

FOSL: Yeah.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I didn't even realize at that time, truthfully, uh, 00:16:00because I never would have left--would have left PBU's (??) ------- ---(??) for showmanship. But it wasn't showmanship. I had a voice. My voice was respected. And many times, I influenced, uh, the city and the board because I guess they--I, I, I--as I look at it now, they might have been yielding to my position. But I'm--I've always been very strong and pushed vehemently for what I wanted.

FOSL: Well, say a little bit more about how that was important to them that you came on the board and got involved--


FOSL: --because I agreed with you. I'd just like to hear more about what you have to say about it.

SHUTTLESWORTH: At that time, you must remember that the recognized civil rights, uh, organization and the churches and the pastors-- particularly, the white pastors, and most of the black pastors when they ----------(??)----------. The communist word was frightening. And I thought for a long time Negros didn't even understand what communist 00:17:00meant. See? But the whites did, and they would use it. They could use the word as a race-baiting word. And then they'd use the word "communist"--anybody who believed in integration was a communist. And I--to tell the truth about it--I'm thinking more now about Jim's v-, visit than I did when I met him, as you bring it up. I think I was important. I think--and--but my--you, you have to understand my perspective. God orders events in this world, whether we believe it or not. And it was designed that I would be there to enhance and substantiate and help, um, SCEF not only to be established and re- established, but to move forward, because my thing was moving forward. Anne and Carl and all of them knew it--and Jim. And even on the board, you must remember that it, it was my--it was at my insistence 00:18:00that the Jim Dombrowski--Jim Dombrowski case was filed.

FOSL: Right. Oh, I didn't know that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yes. I, I told them we ought to quit being harassed all the time. We ought to fight.

FOSL: Um-hm.


FOSL: No--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I have developed a--

FOSL: No, I didn't know that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I've developed a statement in my sayings that in a fight you have to--when you f-, when, when you are continually facing harassment and harassers, you have to learn how to harass--be harassers.

FOSL: That's right. And Anne definitely has that point of view too.

SHUTTLESWORTH: She, she does. She really does. And, and Anne and Carl was for it. And Jim--Jim was, uh, slightly reluctant. But at--at the------------(??) to the board, I almost said that if we couldn't do that, I might feel as if it was no use in my being there. I mean, that was always an alternative. It was--it wasn't put in anything, "You don't do this, I'll leave the board," like that, or, "I'll leave the presidency." But I must say that they allowed me not only full and free 00:19:00discussions, and that they--I think most members of the board--Bishop Love, Bishop Green (??)--way back in there. There were other bishops and people. I remember a Dr. Hough from West Virginia who had a short foot--leg. He--

FOSL: Oh, right. James Hough.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Dr. Hough. But, but I admire those people more than I can say. And I've never heard them say one word that I even could peripherally think was un-American. (laughs)

FOSL: Right, right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: You know? And it just amazed me that, uh, the segregationists could so vehemently harass them and castigate them. And that made me just be all the more for it, I guess. But they--as I say, they allowed me, um--and they recognized my position. And, and in, in many things, I think it helped my position. I must go back 00:20:00again. And you just asked me questions anyway. You go--

FOSL: Yeah, okay. Go--no, I, I'm happy to hear your story.

SHUTTLESWORTH: There was a time--see, it wasn't my all helping them. Uh, but they helped us at one time. If I wanted to get, uh, a news release out, all I had to do was call Carl and Anne and read it to them, and it'd be around the country, even if it wasn't shown in my own city.

FOSL: Um-hm. Yeah, she's talked about that. And you talked about that some in, uh, Aldon Morris' book.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Right, right, right. And so it was--it was helping. I, I still say, you must my basic philosophy that God moves. He lets people, things, and events meet up and criss-cross in a way that things happen. We have to look back later on and see why. But I, um--in my--in my philosophy--in fact, the Bible says the steps of a good man or person directed into events of life and shaping life--the steps of 00:21:00a good man are ordered by the Lord. I think God directs this. And I think, when I look at this, and I look at--see, I've been near death four or five different times. And I have no other reason to live but for that. And it was a godsend to have their support. Now, go on and try to anticipate some of the things in my talk.

FOSL: Well, let me interrupt you with one question--


FOSL: --about that. Can you say a little bit more about the, the, the sort of, like, communication news network that they helped you to plug into?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, Carl and Anne could get on the AP and UP at that time, and even the other papers. And what Carl and Anne would, would, would, would put out--they'd always print the news release because they were recognized as, I guess, professional people.I was a person, and 00:22:00I might would have been given ----------(??). But what they said--but they never--one of the things I remember--they never changed the texture, the content, of what I gave them, even if I would tell them, "Now, if you see something else, add it." But they would basically, if, if this thing had to be so, it would be really what I wanted. They didn't try to--

FOSL: Oh, well, that's good. I'm sure that helped to build the trust, too.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, I never got it then. You must--you m-, y-, you know, it's, it's a thing, like, they didn't have to fight for my, uh, respect and my admiration and my cooperation. They were soldiers, and true soldiers at that. And they were not deceitful. I, I should say this. You could depend on Carl and Anne and Jim doing what they said. See, they, they wouldn't--they wouldn't say some--there are people who said things to get you to this position or that. But they never did. 00:23:00They never--they always explained to me what they had in mind, fully. And they didn't try to sandbag me into some situation. And, and, and so I bring up one of the very important things, which I think began happening back there during the time that Anne and Carl and I were working so. You know, Roy Wilkins and others in the--and they, they were afraid of that word "red-baiting," or whatever ----------(??). But, uh, they, uh, shied away. In fact, Anne and Carl couldn't get too much entree with them. Uh, SCEF was something that they,

I think, respected, but, uh, far off. Uh, not that they, uh, didn't empathize and respect them because I never heard them say anything 00:24:00against them personally. But, uh, their support came from NAACP, Urban League, all those. And then some of the local movements, people who either hadn't heard or understood or hadn't really just understood why these people are fighting and why communism had such a bad, uh, situation, or didn't think about it. To me it was obvious. So, uh, I remember during Eisenhower's administration, um--I must give him credit for being very thoughtful and inc-, and incisive. They could see things that ought to be done. Of course, that was my thought too because I'm an actionist from the core. And we would, uh--we, we got together in getting a joint statement that was unheard of before. 00:25:00Nobody would, would, would join in anything that SCEF would put out. Anne will tell you that.

FOSL: Yeah.

SHUTTLESWORTH: But, uh, through me, the, the, the civil rights side of the movement and the civil liberties side, uh, began com-, and, and it happened in little bits so that Anne and I would write up a proposal to Eisenhower, for instance. And they--there was some goof (??) that she could get to John (??). But if the Alabama Christian's Movement name was on it, that was the strongest thing in civil rights then. Um, then that gave it a lot of things. I remember at one time--I don't remember when it was--Anne and I got a statement together. Uh, this might have been after Carl died. And we said, uh, sixteen (??)--this was an organization to sign a petition to the President of the United States--the first time that that was done. And then, uh, I should say 00:26:00to you, I was still on the board of SCEF for at least--for three years, I guess, before they asked me to ser-, I don't remember.

FOSL: Before they asked--

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think I got--

FOSL: --you to serve as president?


FOSL: It was four years. I mean, no, it was five years, actually.


FOSL: You went on the board in--


FOSL: --fifty-eight--


FOSL: --is what I've got.


FOSL: And then you, um, became the president in '63, right? Does that sound right?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Was it '63 or, or before? Because I know I was at, at Revelation Church during that time.

FOSL: It might have been before. I can--I'm not sure--I'm pretty sure about when you went on the board being '58, but I'm not sure about '63.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Because I thought it was--let's see--I, I came to the Revelation in '61. But it looks like to me it was right after '61 or even '62 when, when, when I was [clock chimes] president because it 00:27:00came out that, that you might--all you got to do it get that copy of that paper. And it said, "Negro Pastor Heads Communist Front." A green paper--greener than that sign--that water (??) (Fosl laughs), with a black streamer all the way across it. Uh, let me show you how I did, too. And, and I remember before this that I, I think I got Martin and Ralph to sign one of two statements. But the key to it--and, and, you see, your personality is a lot in anything, as I consider Anne and Carl and Jim. Um, I'm for--I'm for ending segregation overnight, if possible. Doing anything I can to get--banish it. Uh, so I remember 00:28:00SCLC was pulling its, uh--whatever year it was that we held our conference in Louisville.

FOSL: Oh, I didn't even know that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: We had a board meeting or our--


SHUTTLESWORTH: --convention.

FOSL: Okay. I'm not sure. I'll have to check to that. I wasn't even aware of when--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, that's the year that I--because it was right after that that we had the meeting. And I should tell you this--about it so you can write on it. I was in Birmingham. As you know, I was in Birmingham, oh, back and forth. I would come up here and preach and be going to Birmingham all the time, most of the time. And Gloster Current who was the field representative at that time--it happened that the plane that I caught in Birmingham to go to Mississippi, he was on the plane. And he had this green--greener than this, a little bit greener than this. A little bit--well, it was between this color and that color. (laughs) It was real green, but black with silk ------- 00:29:00---(??). And he had a copy of this in his hands. "Negro Pastor Heads Communist Front." And so he was, uh--but, "Yeah, man, I'm glad to see you. Look here." ----------(??).

FOSL: Was that the first time you'd seen it?


FOSL: Oh, okay.

SHUTTLESWORTH: In fact, that was the day--that day--same day's paper.

FOSL: Oh, it came out that day. Okay.

SHUTTLESWORTH: He had a copy, and he was gonna take it to New York.

FOSL: Wow. Huh.

SHUTTLESWORTH: So he said to me, "Yeah, yeah." Then I said, "Yeah." Yeah, look at this, man. Are you in there?" Well, he was going up (??) and get out there. I told him--I said, "I wouldn't have gone in there had I intended to get out. I never back up." So he did (laughs)--he didn't say no more when I said that. So we flew on over to Atlanta, and he--it was just time before the airport, and we had, had a little stall, you know.

FOSL: Now, he was with NAACP?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, he was--

FOSL: Right.


FOSL: Yeah, the field director.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --field director. So he was ----------(??). He ----- -----(??) "Hell, yeah. ----------(??) man, yeah, green paper. Yeah, he's here with me now." He said--and, and so I ----------(??)--I said, 00:30:00"That's--you talking to Roy, aren't you?" "Yeah." I said, "Well, let me speak to him." So, so I went to--went to the phone. See, I knew I'd take the bull by the horn, two incidences I did. And, uh, I said, "Hey, Roy, hey." I said, "Well, I guess, uh, y-, you hear I'm head of the--uh, president of SCEF, now." "Yeah, yeah." I said, "I've been on the board for several years." "Yeah, yeah, yeah." I said, "Well, Gloster just told me to get out of it, but I told him that I didn't intend to get out of it." (laughs) I said, "In fact, I, I what I--when I, I"--I said, "I would appreciate you." At this time, they had a lot of case for me. I said, "I know y'all are handling my cases and other things, and I have really appreciated the, the way you, uh, carried on there," because I used to ----------(??) hide my neck instead of how you doin'. And, uh, I said, "But I want you to understand that I have taken this position." I said, "I think these people ought to be supported." I said, "And, um, if the NAACP cannot handle my cases, uh, from here on in, I would understand." He said, "Well, oh, no, no. Anything--the 00:31:00Jackson Daily News is for it, you know we are against it."

FOSL: Oh, interesting.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Settled it just like that. And, and nobody ever castigated me. That's the NAACP. And they're the ones defending my neck, you know.

FOSL: Right, right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: So that same--it wasn't long thereafter that the SCLC met in Louisville. Now, you get the year and you get--

FOSL: I will.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --the exact date.

FOSL: I will. Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And, um, because that was the same day's paper that he had in his hand. The SCLC--the year was board meeting or--had to be a board meeting because--

FOSL: Or a national convention--maybe an annual convention.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --convention was in August. It might have been in August or it'd be in April or August, I guess. So, probably was in August, I guess it was, because I had been at Revelation maybe a year and a half. 00:32:00It might have been '62 or '63.

FOSL: Okay. I'll check that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: But I was gone most of the time. They had some (??)--and then they had--I helped. So I want--that, that's one of the things I wanted to tell you. The other thing was, um--so I decided to, uh, meet it head on with Martin and Ralph too. It so happened that Mahalia Jackson, Martin, and Ralph and I were picked up at the Louisville airport at the same time. And we were riding in a car. Ralph, Mahalia, and I were in the back. Martin and the driver--I'm--I don't know whether somebody was in the middle or not in the front. So I was sitting on the rear, right behind Martin, on the right. Ralph was- -Mahalia was on the end. Ralph was on the other side. So I remember this well because coming down off the ramp back onto the expressway, we had an escort. And people are driving--you know, they don't think 00:33:00about it. So somebody is--was--one of the cars was struck, and they kept going.

FOSL: Oh, wow.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I don't know whether it was the one we were in or the one right before. They just kept going. I--and I remember saying say to Martin--I said, "Now, Martin, this is not nonviolence." (laughs) But he kept on. He couldn't do anything about it. And so I decided without any, any feeling at all--I said, "Well, okay, Martin." I said, "You know I--" I said to Ralph, "You know I'm president of SCEF now." Ralph said, "Yeah, and you get out of that mess quick as you can."

FOSL: Really? Ralph said that too?

SHUTTLESWORTH: He said those words to me. I said, "Well, I didn't get in it to get out of it." I said, "In fact, I came to tell you and Martin tonight." And I said, "Well, Martin, I guess you--" and I, I just quit talking to him and started talking to Martin. I'm gonna do this all together. Martin was in the front seat. I said, "Well, Martin, you understand," I said, "I'm talking--me and Ralph are talking about it." I said, "But I wanted to tell you and Ralph that I'm--I came 00:34:00tonight to be prepared to resign if you all feel I can be no longer of service to the SCLC. And I'm president of SCEF now, and I plan to stay. And Ralph thinks I ought to get out of it, but I plan to stay into it." And I said, "And I came to resign so I won't cause you all any embarrassment." Martin said, "Oh, no, Fred. No, sir. You--we're with you. And you know right," and blah-blah-blah. I said, "Well, I just wanted you to know that. And I just--I--that, that's my position. I came to, uh, stand up before the convention or the, the board and resign because I think these people are right. They ought to be supported because as far as I'm concerned, the cause of civil rights and civil liberties are part of the same process. And I'm in it for the duration." Just like I told that policeman, when he thought I should-- after this bombing that night--told me ought to leave town as quick as I could. I said, "No, I'm here for the duration." And, you know, nobody from that time to this one ever said a word to me about that. (laughs)


FOSL: Huh. Now, tell me this. Speaking of Martin, what do you--what did--did y'all ever talk about this more in terms of his feeling about the Bradens, because that's something I've tried to get a handle on. Anne definitely describes their relationship in a very positive way. And she feels that his view on the red-baiting was actually pretty good, and that--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Except that--

FOSL: --it's not that he kept distance. It was more because of--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --of, of other ties (??).

FOSL: Yeah, but--so could you speak to that a little bit?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, Martin, you know, was--what we were doing put him at the top leaders in country or above them in the sense of crystallizing as the leader of the movement. Yet Martin always was the same with them. And these people had, uh, abject fear of, uh, civil 00:36:00rights movements--of, uh, the race-baiters. And, uh, Martin was always a person slow to express himself on things like that. Uh, and it was after that, though, that we had to talk about it. We had at least three meetings because I was the secretary. And, um, I think on the third one, I told him--I said, "I'm tired of writing the same thing over and over again." But we came to the conclusion that, that, that we had to take our stand regardless of what NAACP or other groups did. And that was--that was a little bit after this other thing I just told you.

FOSL: This conversation or--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Might have been a year later. But we began to discuss it. And at first, it was--it was, uh, debated. But nobody said anything to me. Nobody even on our board ever said, "Well, you ought 00:37:00not to be president of SCEF," because if they had, I'd have told them to go to hell.

FOSL: This--so you're talking about the SCLC?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I'm talking about SCLC. And even when we were discussing it--and the meeting was, uh, in re-, relationship to some issue, whether, uh, uh, SCLC should be joined with this and the Voice and doing it that way. But King and Moore (??) were discussing it like that. And finally we got to the point--it wasn't in the--in the--in the far distance that we concluded--we had to say what was Christian and what was right. If anybody did not--and we wanted the money too. But money couldn't, uh, dash our Christian conscience to speak up. See, we, we sort of took the swing of the earlier church. We had to speak. Sort of like Peter said, "We ought to obey God rather than man." I wish people would do that now, for that matter.


FOSL: Yeah. Well, um, do you remember ever having any conversations with Martin about the Bradens in particular?


FOSL: Because, you know, actually, Coretta--I, I had--I, I wrote to Coretta and asked her if I could interview her because they were sort of friends, really.


FOSL: And she got her secretary to call me and said she didn't have time to do a person-to-person interview, but she would write me some things if I would send her a list of questions. And that had been about nearly onto six months ago, and I hadn't heard from her, so--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Did you send the questions?

FOSL: I sent them, yeah. And I said you can write them, or here--I sent her a blank tape. I said, you know, just speak into the tape recorder and it would be a lot easier for you than having--

SHUTTLESWORTH: She hasn't done it yet?

FOSL: Haven't heard from her. I just thought I'd give her until the first of the year, and then at least write them another letter.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, I would write her again. When did you do it?

FOSL: Oh, be--gee, it's been a while ago, like August.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, my, now--now, you should--I would--I would immediately write her and let her get on with it so, so you can get your work done.

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: She has a lot to do, but, but, uh, I don't see why she 00:39:00couldn't.

FOSL: You would think.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, a person as, as, as substantial in the movement and, uh, to our efforts as Anne, I, I think Coretta should take time to do it. It's like I told you, I've, I've been out of town for the last month. But, uh, I think you should at least have this privilege of the interview.

FOSL: Well, you should tell--be encouraging about it to Anne, too, because she's the--it's that humility factor. She is just so warm and cold about the whole thing.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, she--you just tell her I told you that she always is talking about we ought to write the history. And so you are writing for history when you try to explain, uh, and try to record what was done by a very courageous, very thoughtful, very committed young white woman and her husband in the civil rights struggle. You know, we are co-chairs for SOC, and I--

FOSL: I know.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --we organized the Southern Organizing Committee. So, um, 00:40:00and, and that she should--she should give you the information to do it.

FOSL: Well, you know, sometimes she's very cooperative. She's really, you know--

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think she goes through moods, you know.

FOSL: Yeah.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Anne is getting up in age, too, and is very tired. Anne--

FOSL: She's so tired. In fact--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Ever since, ever since I've known her, she had done things--

[Pause in recording]

FOSL: --to another question I had, which it, it is an interesting--and this is more a personality thing. But you know her so well. You've known her a long time. Well, two things. One is, when did you all get to the point where you--where you would, you would say, like, they were your friends? You know what I'm saying?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Almost from the start.

FOSL: Really?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I accepted them as fellow workers involved in what I was involved in. I felt, first of all, their sincerity. And as I said to 00:41:00you before, they never said a few words to get me into anything. They always explained. And, uh, the more I was with them, the more I began to admire them more in their really lonely struggle--

FOSL: I--you're right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --to get people to--

FOSL: It was lonely.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --support King (??) and so forth.

FOSL: I know it must have been.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And I, I admired their zeal which, which remained. I-- and I've been surprised that, that, that--some men and women would have been broken.

FOSL: Well, that is one thing that I have not--that's what I've tried, in that three hours I was telling you about--I tried to get Anne to talk about that. And that's something I never fully understood is what is it that was able to keep them going? Was it that their marriage was so rich in itself? And if it was--

SHUTTLESWORTH: I don't think that was it. They, they--she put it like this. She and Carl were both newspaper people.

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think Carl was more advanced that she was. I don't--I really don't know. Carl was a very strong person, see. If he had 00:42:00to curse somebody out, he'd do it. And, and it was at the drop of a hat. But nobody doubted his straightforwardness. He was strong for Anne. And I think, uh, much of her strength was that she felt the same thing. She never did in her heart--I believe Anne, in her heart, never was a segregationist. See, I don't believe when she was a girl before she could say anything. I don't believe she ever really got--and I think that's what you have to really be. But, uh, that--and then the more I got to know them and to--I, I felt like they were honest above and beyond the average person--Carl, Anne, and Jim, those people. And even when I would, uh--you know, I went several times to New York and 00:43:00different places to do things, to the West Coast, just for them. And I, I've never gotten up and spoken about them without saying that I thought they were some of the greatest Americans. And I feel that way. I--nobody forces me to say that. And I don't--I'm not a liar.

FOSL: Well, how would you describe their marriage? You said you didn't think it was that richness of their relationship that sustained them. But how would you describe their marriage? As you--I mean, you were their friend. Obviously, you weren't, like, with them everyday--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, I, I wasn't ----------(??) --I don't want to--I don't want to, to, to be as if some person who, uh, ----------(??) about that. But I, I, I, I don't know. Carl and Anne were man and wife. And I remember they had the children. I think I went to Louisville two or three times. I went to speak there--

FOSL: Yeah, I've got it written--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --for Reverend somebody.


FOSL: Let's see--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Even when I came to Cincinnati, here, I read--read a thing that night in Louisville to keep from going--from being here talking to these people because I didn't want this church up here. And Anne and Carl and them--and, and Reverend may--I forget his name. But it's--it was an old man.

FOSL: Uh, Purdue (??).

SHUTTLESWORTH: Purdue. He arranged a meeting. And I spoke to a big mass meeting that night.

FOSL: I've got you in May of '59 and again in December of that year, and a couple of other times later on too.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, they asked me to come back.

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And I came back. That's right. Uh, and what was your question? I'm sorry.

FOSL: About their marriage.

SHUTTLESWORTH: As I, I almost saw them as--and, and, and, you know, I wasn't around them when they were lovey-dovey or--I never saw them kissing and hugging and all that stuff. They--but they were always totally respectful. Carl was always strong, even at home. Anne was a wife. Uh, I know one thing. I, I've said this to Carl and Anne. They 00:45:00would drink black coffee so strong that it would stain the side of a porcelain cup.

FOSL: (laughs) All their cups are stained in their house today.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And, and I said, "Y'all have to be strong to do this." (both laugh) Because I couldn't take it. Uh, but I think they loved each other, uh, in so far as I know. And I never heard anybody-- because I wasn't in Louisville that much. And even--I'm surprised, our being this far apart, we're not gonna be together more. But I don't-- when I go to--through Louisville, and I'm on my way somewhere else. And Anne has always invited me to c-, and Carl invited me to come. I think I stayed--did I stay at their house once? If I did, it wasn't but once, but--

FOSL: Oh, really. You've only stayed with them one time then?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think I stayed at their house one time. Well, I stayed in Louisville.

FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Uh, but I--back then, when they--when I learned their struggle. I remember I learned from them how they had, had, uh, 00:46:00bought this house for this black man. That--if I had had any doubt about the--I heard it in the--well, then I learned that one time they bragged about ----------(??), I just ----------(??) help them. They didn't--and, you know, they don't even talk about it. They--you--I never heard Anne and Carl talking about, "we bought this house to test segregation." Uh-uh. They never--it was just a thing that they did, and which makes me think that they never do things just to show themselves or just to brag about it. And then they're self-effacing in, in meetings and in ----------(??). They never do it to be seen. They, they always--they were always happy to push me, although I didn't particularly need it. But, but they were fulfilled, I guess, in pushing me because I--we were all together.

FOSL: How would you char-, uh--um, how would char-, I want to go back to this--

[Pause in recording]

FOSL: --that pamphlet they did for you in '58 or '59. They challenged 00:47:00segregation at its core. How would you place that in terms of the developing movement in Birmingham?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I thought at that time, it was one of the most forceful, direct, and challenging pieces of literature--

FOSL: Seems like it, yeah.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --that, uh, I had ever read. And I have appreciated that perhaps more than many other things people have done because at that time--and then they distributed it. It was distributed widely all over the, the country.

FOSL: So it wasn't really just the pamphlet itself. I was that distribution that was crucial, sounds like.

SHUTTLESWORTH: The distribution was, was crucial, yes. And, um, I, I just, uh--I just thought it was so nice--

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --to answer your question.

FOSL: Right. Um, but I just remember one thing, I heard your, your wife went and stayed with them once.

SHUTTLESWORTH: My wife--I think she stayed with them more than once.

FOSL: At least--yeah.



FOSL: At least once. So, so were they good friends as well?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yes, um, my wife was, uh, nice with, with, with them.

FOSL: Because, uh, it said it was just a, a little reference Anne made in a letter that she was writing because she said that she had go-, that your wife had gone there supposedly to relax, but she ended up on the picket line. This was in February--I mean, this was in September of 1960 when the sit-ins were really just starting in Louisville.


FOSL: And I guess she was on the picket line with Andrew Wade, was what Anne had said, which was the guy for--

SHUTTLESWORTH: If there had been any action there, Anne, Anne would have been in it--

FOSL: Um-hm. Right (laughs)

SHUTTLESWORTH: --and of course my wife would have been into whatever.

FOSL: Sure. Um, oh, but wh-, I guess what I was--what a lot of people say--how--because Carl clearly was very--a very profound influence on her in terms of her becoming a lifeti-, time activist. I think that he 00:49:00was such a catalyst--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yes, yes. I think--

FOSL: --in that regard.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I think--and I think at his death--you know, I went down to speak for them. I was looking--I have to copy of that paper I, I wrote for him. I thought it was one--some--one of the better pieces of writing that I had done. Uh--

FOSL: I might have it. I'm not sure.

SHUTTLESWORTH: When I saw them, I saw them as a family. I thought they were sometimes almost mechanical about going and doing. And each one of them were personalities in their own right. But I thought she fully respected him. And, and, and, uh, in some of our gatherings together, and even when I was in town, she would, "Carl, what are you think about so and so and so?" "Oh, hell, there ain't nothing to that," so and so and so and so on. Now, you may think it's somewhat bothersome, but he would always respect their opinion, but he could give his like that. And, uh, "Well, now, Carl, don't you think so and so and so and so?" 00:50:00Anne was always the, the, the, the thoughtful and reflective person. And, and, and, and, and one of things I always admired: she gives credit to people who maybe do not have any credit but that to which she ascribed to it. And, uh, let me go back to another thing since we--you asked me about the interview, and I should say it. When SCEF--and, and you can ask anything you want--I'm just reflecting.

FOSL: Sure.

SHUTTLESWORTH: When, when the old SCEF broke up, I thought Anne and Carl--you know, we, we started putting so many people on the board. And I remember saying to them that they want all the board to be staff and the staff to be board. And I said to them, "Now,"--and I even took 00:51:00this position as president--"that you're planting your destruction." I said, "If you got nothing but a spitting committee, you've got to have somebody that's--tell somebody that sometime when to spit and when not spit."

FOSL: Oh, okay. Yeah.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And--but when everybody's equal, then nobody can tell anybody anything. And when they did it, it was in the minutes, wherever it is. Anne will tell you. Uh, as I was saying, "Well, now you're--you're sowing the seeds of destruction." And they took a lot of younger people in who were, were, were disillusioned--

FOSL: Right, and in these various little parties and whatever.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --and had, had read a lot of writings from people who just wrote because they could write (laughs) whether there was any meaning to it. I remember some of the people we met. And--but, you know, I have always admired Anne. She could take in the most 00:52:00disillusioned person and make them feel at home. And I thought that that was--if I had anything to say about her to--I think that--it's the--it's the--it's the--it's the disposition to, to over-explain.

FOSL: Um-hm. Interesting.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And over-try--and try to over-show another person's point, even when it's not relevant, when it has ceased to have, have relevance. But freedom--she fought for that. The other thing was her belief in absolute democracy to the point where everybody is equal, totally equal, in all aspects, and in governance. And I said to them-- I said, "The human race is like that. We--there are some people who--to 00:53:00be doing. And, and democracy means that people elect. Even in this country, you elect people. Now, our problem is we don't see to them doing what we said after they get there." But, I said, "But everybody can't say." And I might say to you another thing, you know. And now, other people, a lot of the younger people, even on the march of--the second march across the bridge in--in, uh--

FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Some of the young people were the most disillusioned when we had to turn around and didn't go through those troopers. They wanted us to go through those troopers. And, and, and, uh--I--that's something aside. I can go on and explain, if you want to. But I told Martin, I said, "You've got to make up your mind." We were on the left side of the road, left side of the highway, the big two-lane and the troopers were on the left side. Had we'd been on the right side when we'd been going, it might have been different. But when the governor- -when, when the governor--when those people were ordered to move back, I said, "Now, Martin, here's your trap. You started the movement 00:54:00walking the face of the trap. They can get you for several things, of disrupting traffic on the highway. You've got to make up your mind. If they aren't gonna help us to march on this side, we can't march it on our own." So I was right up there. Ralph didn't know what to say. But I always--but well, one of my advantages being I can--could see through. Martin said, "Yeah, yeah." I said, "You gotta do it." Well, now, when we got down to praying and got up and started back, the people way back, they thought we ought to have everybody on that road to vote. Now, when would you--how could you have, and when could you have concluded a vote from everybody on the road?

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: This--and, you know, I--and, and, and in--so about me though, you know, I was very, you know, uh, understanding that times do change. You're gonna have this time of people not going to accept truth. And even God doesn't go ahead and go that way until He get in trouble. That's in the Book. (sighs) But I thought that, that, that's 00:55:00the second thing, that, that, that taking people who had been involved in movements or had ideas. I remember one time when everybody was reading Martha Thomas' (??) book, and then everybody that was reading some others, which I never read. Uh, uh, hell, I could read them. But some of the young people didn't know which philosophy they had. But Anne gave them that right. And quite often, we'd discuss it. And I just--I just, uh--as, as president--and, of course, I had to once in a while, you know, say, "Well, now, we're going to decide where we are here, blah, blah, blah." But I think the, the--I think the, the, the, uh--the, the destruction of SCEF was the time when they make-, voted 00:56:00to make board staff and staff board. Everybody was equal. And I said, "This, this, this--you, you're sowing the seeds of destruction." And even to the older people there--Jim--let's see, was Jim living at that time?

FOSL: Yeah, I think he was.

SHUTTLESWORTH: He was. Um, I don't know whether Carl was living then.

FOSL: No, he was. He was--he--but he pulled out pretty early on before- -long before she did.


FOSL: He just flat resigned in, like, '72.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, well, I don't remember when this was. But I knew that it, it, it, it, it--we couldn't--because if you have to have--and if everybody has a right that's it's as free as ----------(??) to do this and that, you've got more--you, you lay the basis for confusion. And, and, and even though everybody wants to destroy segregation, you can destroy yourselves on philosophy or on--. And, um, I thought that 00:57:00was the other ----------(??). But I admire her for--I admired them for wanting everybody to their right (??). And that's right. I believe Carl did slow down or something.

FOSL: Um-hm. He started--you, you know, he set up that, uh, training for institute--Training Institute for Propaganda and Organizing, TIPO.

SHUTTLESWORTH: When was that? I didn't know about--

FOSL: That was, like, '72, I think. And he just, like, cut off SCEF altogether. He just said, "I'm sick of this," you know.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think the younger people--Carl, Carl didn't go--I think, think Carl would have respect for what Anne did, but he didn't- -I don't think agreed with it as much as she did. But Anne was pushing for it. And, and that was another instance that, uh--and we're just talking about the history, of course. History has, you know, history has to be recorded. I remember when, when the board had the discussion 00:58:00of whether or not they were to be hired or--I don't know, something. It was whether they were to be hired. Anne and Carl insisted on staying in. And that was the only time I disagreed with them. I said, "No, I think the board ought to be able to discuss." I said, "You should say what you--." I don't know what was behind that, something ----------(??).

FOSL: Interesting. I'd love to know when that was.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, uh, we had already been into things, I think, before that. I'm not sure whether--was I on the b-, maybe I was a board member then.

FOSL: Maybe it was about whether to, uh, you know, support them through that--his HUAC case because, in a way, they kind of had to throw the whole resources of the organization behind that HUAC case--


FOSL: --or else not.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I thought it was--it, it might have been more. But it looked like it was behind them or one of them or something. Well, I 00:59:00don't know what--

FOSL: Maybe it was about them becoming the executive directors.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, that's what it is. Thank you.

FOSL: Sixty-six.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, right, right. And that's the only time that I remember that I had to disagree with them. I, I said, "Well, it ought to be a--" they wanted to stay and hear what everybody said.

FOSL: Right. Yeah, that's not good. I agree with you.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Carl said the same thing. But Anne was the one that was pushing it more. I said, "Well, Anne, I, I think," I said, "Now, I, I, I," I said, "I really hate to disagree." I said, "But I think the board has a right to say--if they want to say something about you and, and, and if it's something you didn't like, it, it might give offense. And it just ain't right." I said, "But I think the board if it's--it has the right--it has the right to hear you and then make a decision independently." That's what it was--executive director. That's right. Now, you can see what I--(laughs)--I'd forgotten about that. That's the only time that I had to really disagree. And the 01:00:00board was--started talking because they, they were--this--I think they almost threatened to not to be hired or something if they couldn't sit in. And I think it was my position that--said to them, I said, "Now, you know, I'm your friend." And I said, "No, but, but I think they--the board ought to have a privilege to do that."

FOSL: Hmm. I need to find out more about that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I said, "Even if people are ----------(??) with you (??), they ought to have a right to say why are they--"

FOSL: And so now, Carl took her position?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Carl was, was less about it than Anne.

FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah. But, but they did--the board did make the decision without them being present.

FOSL: Okay.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Uh, but that to my--the other thing was I remember--I'm talking about the, uh, tendency to, to, to go--remember that when the 01:01:00word 'Black' and 'Negro' was being changed?

FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And, and they--some of the releases we wrote and statements, I had to include--because see I didn't--I didn't, uh, want the total word 'Negro' out, we'd been using Negro all the time. So I h-, I, it was I who determined 'Black' and 'Negro' ----------(??).

FOSL: Oh, okay.

SHUTTLESWORTH: They, they, they gave in, and they had to be 'Black' somewhere--'Black', had to--

FOSL: They wanted it to be bl-, to say 'Black'?

SHUTTLESWORTH: All black. And I had to put 'Negro' in there all over--

FOSL: Interesting. I didn't know about that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: That's right. And, and I, I insisted on that. Uh--

FOSL: Well, they were probably the whites that were the most supportive of Black Power.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Oh, yes, yes. She--and they were--they were--they were supportive of, of all of it. A, and they were never openly critici-, critical of it, of, of, of them. Although, they would not, uh--because I think even some of the Black Power boys, uh, caused some disruption in Anne and them's business (??).

FOSL: Oh, definitely. Over there at, at that SCEF headquarters, they 01:02:00took all those people hostage and all that. (laughs)

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah. And I told Anne, I said, "Anne, you're too, too patient." I might have said, "too damn patient," or something like that. (laughs) And I think Anne had to be--become--I think she was, uh--Anne, Anne's disposition was that I'm not gonna be against anybody that's fighting for freedom. And that's why, I think, uh, some of those youngsters who, as I said, brought the dissolution of SCEF--uh, well, that was her position. And she is not anti- anybody. I don't know--I don't know anybody that Anne is anti.

FOSL: No, I just was at a meeting with her not too long ago when I was over there in the summer where she was defending this guy from the Promise Keepers because that--uh, it was some meeting. I don't know what it was. But the--a bunch of people had, like, shouted that guy down.


FOSL: And she was, like, "Well, we should hear what he's got to say," you know.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, you know the women thing--now, they, they, they 01:03:00wanted women to be there too. I--that might be in the same thing. Weren't the Promise Keepers gonna have a meeting in Washington before?

FOSL: Oh, well th-, no, this was something, like, that didn't have anything to do with the Promise Keepers.


FOSL: But it was, like, these different community forums they were having--


FOSL: --to talk about race--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Somebody, who maybe--

FOSL: --in, in Louisville.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --have something over here, and they bring it up here before they can bring it out in the forum. And maybe against the president because he didn't say that--I understand.

FOSL: Yeah, see, I think a lot of kind of more left-wing people were just, like, we do not want to be dealing with these Promise Keepers because they're so oppressive towards women. And she's like, "Well, let's hear what they've got to say."

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, that, that is typical Anne. She really--and you have to admire her for it.

FOSL: Um-hm. No, I do. Yeah. Well, um, oh, there was somewhere--I-- oh, here's what I wanted to ask you--that--when you first joined SCEF-- oh, oh, well, first of all, when you first met them and you started kind of corresponding with them and thinking about going on the board--it didn't take you that long to go on the board. You met them--if you 01:04:00met them in '57, you were on the board by '58, so it was a pretty quick (snaps)--

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think I was on there before '58.

FOSL: But right away, did you take any flack from, like, working with SCEF? I mean, you mentioned all that with the presidency, but, like, right away?


FOSL: No? So it didn't, like--

SHUTTLESWORTH: See, my organization--

FOSL: You weren't red-baited right away?

SHUTTLESWORTH: No, my organization in Birmingham was--in a sense, the organization was me. But I fought. And they said God's sending him to lead the fight, so I led it. And it wasn't all--I didn't brook a whole lot of, uh, argumentation. And one of the things that, that, that, that--I was disturbed--distressed that every time I would go to the Montgomery Improvement Association, and they'd sit there and argue all day. And I, I--that--we just didn't have that, see. I remember Solomon Seay and some of--and it was--oh, Lord. I just--I told them, I said, "Y'all don't do nothing but eat chicken and argue." (laughs) I lost my license when I was going down to Montgomery. Joe Lowery came up from Mobile, 160 miles, and I had come from 100 miles. Lost my license 01:05:00through Thorsby. You know, they--the police had the ra-, radio, you know, and they knew when you were coming. And I got there and it was probably (??) ten o' clock. And I came through ----------(??) and the man had arrested me, you know, because I could see him on the--

FOSL: Because you were speeding?

SHUTTLESWORTH: They say I was speeding. I wasn't. I might have been speeding, but I wasn't flying.

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Uh, uh, but it was determined--because later on, the same guy arrested my brother, stopped him. He said, "I've got your brother's license. I can take yours." So that shows you right there. My brother told me that. And I didn't even know. We were just talking one day. We thought--but anyway, we got to Montgomery a little before ten o' clock. Grabbed Martin and ----------(??). They came to the meeting at 12:00--between 12:00 and 12:30--ordering chicken. This is how--you know. And so it took the Lord to win--to move the battle 01:06:00of civil rights. (laughs)

FOSL: Well, um, when you first started being part of the SCEF board, did you feel that it was a, a sense of real interracial cooperation?


FOSL: I mean, did you feel any sense of paternalism at all?

SHUTTLESWORTH: No. Um--uh, you mean that they were being paternalistic toward me?

FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: No, no. No, they accepted me as--I would think more than equal, I guess, because they needed me.

FOSL: Right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And, uh, of course, if, if, if, if it had been different, I wouldn't have stayed around. I'd been a strong person. And I certainly wouldn't have stayed on the board and gone on to be president, which ----------(??). But we never had any arguments about that. And it wasn't paternalistic. We'd always--everybo-, they would state their opinion, and then I would st-, but I was always very strong.

FOSL: Um-hm. Well, do you feel that, um--you know, I think in the 01:07:00fifties, around the time that Carl--in the first couple years that Carl and Anne were on the staff, there were a number of board members who'd left.


FOSL: Not a huge number, but some.


FOSL: And, you know, they lost that whole Eleanor Roosevelt support. And I think that was because of hiring Melish.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, because I remember staying with Melish one year or more. I don't know what it was he did. It was something.

FOSL: Well, it's not clear. He just--you know, he just had these, like, communist associations that--I mean, he had, uh--you know, he'd been on that--like, I guess he'd been involved with the Council For American- Soviet Friendship or something like that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I remember staying with Howard and Mary Jane, his wife. And they may have been--I stayed there at least once, maybe twice. I'm not sure.

FOSL: Well, I just wondered if you got a sense of how much the board backed Carl and Anne.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Uh, if there were those who left, I never heard it was 01:08:00for that. But I--but I never heard any discussion in meetings or apart from it. If they had those kind of things, they knew I was for them. So that I would think that my being on the board strengthened the board to, to, to, to, to not only continue its action, but to--but to--but to, to advance and attack. And, of course, this was the same idea that Carl and Anne had.

FOSL: Right. Well, you know, there is this, uh--there are those who say that they kind of remade SCEF in their own image, in a way. And, like, by the time they kept--

SHUTTLESWORTH: But they were strong. And Jim and they--them--

FOSL: Yeah, the three of them. Not just them, too. But with him, too.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Jim, Jim Dombrowski was very soft-spoken, very--and very self-effacing. But he was very strong. And, uh, you had to--y-, you would, you would, you would--he would use his disability to make you 01:09:00feel sorry for him and yet make you appreciate him for what he did, you know, for what he was. But he, he was very fond of Carl and Anne, as I recall.

FOSL: Yeah, I think so.


FOSL: I think Aubrey and Carl had some personality conflicts.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And I never did, uh, get in too much, uh, to it. Uh, they might have.

FOSL: Yeah, he was crazy about Anne.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, but he didn't like Carl too much.

FOSL: Right. And I guess Carl rubbed people the wrong way a lot.


FOSL: You either kind of really liked him or really didn't--


FOSL: --is my sense of him.

SHUTTLESWORTH: But I admired him because of, of, of what he was. And I saw them as a, as--the two as one entity, basically.

FOSL: Uh-huh. A lot of people say that. Well, would you say that he was more of the, uh, kind of more personable of the two, or she? Or could you really just not say? Because everybody--


FOSL: --used to talk about he--how he would cut up and make jokes and 01:10:00stuff.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah. If people had any problem with Carl, their tendency of toward--leaning toward Anne would overbalance it, I think.

FOSL: Uh-huh. Uh-huh. Huh. Well, um, another thing. And this is really just a very speculative question, and it's really kind of a guess. And it's about personality and everything else. One thing that I'm trying to understand is how sh-, although she was so influenced by him early in their marriage, and the direction of her life, I think, was very shaped by him--then she was so incredibly independent. I mean, she didn't miss a step after he was gone.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I, um, would've expected to, uh, see some period of bereavement and some effort at lessening. But I was amazed that she, she never let up.

FOSL: Yeah, it seemed almost the opposite.


SHUTTLESWORTH: She never--and if she grieved, she grieved within herself. But she didn't grieve outwardly. And everybody empathized with her. I remember (laughs) I was going to the funeral. I had my son driving me. And, uh, going down 71, he was gonna turn off. I've got a '75 ----------(??). And he was just talking, and we had some- -uh, was it some young lady driving down with us or something? And we were talking, and he went straight on down. We, we were--I find that we were in Lexington although--(Fosl laughs)--and so here we are, and we had to fl-, oh, we were flying. But we, we made it. We made it there in time. And I gave it--I think I was the principal eulogy. I, I believe it was.

FOSL: Um-hm. Now, is that the same thing that Angela Davis was at, or is that a different one?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I don't know whether it--

FOSL: She spoke at a memorial service for him in Louisville, one anyway. But I think it was a little bit after.

SHUTTLESWORTH: It might have been. I don't think she was there the day 01:12:00I was there.

FOSL: Huh.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Because I was the--

FOSL: Interesting.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I was the--I was the person. I thought it was going to be a funeral, and Anne cremated the body.

FOSL: You're right. Yeah, she did.


FOSL: Huh. Yeah, she almost seemed to throw herself ever more deeply into--I think--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, I think--

FOSL: --that--


FOSL: --was her grief, maybe.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I think she grieved by (sighs) going further and, and carrying things out, being sure it's carried out, because he was so strong. She never showed any weakness.

FOSL: Um, can you think of any more interesting stories that took place? I mean, just incidents, episodes, that you were a part of with either or both of them that might be interesting for me to hear about? That's a, that's a big question, I know.

SHUTTLESWORTH: We, we, we didn't socialize that much. When we were together, we were together.


FOSL: Well, I mean, like, things that would, uh, suggest the quality of her commitment or leadership or some personality characteristic. But it could be something political, definitely.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I used to call Anne the mother of the movement. The uh, uh, uh, let's see. I don't remember what, what year it was. She can tell you. But one young white girl in Birmingham came to our meeting once or twice. And her family was so distressed. And I, I did meet with the grandfather and the father. We met one night. And they were so distressed. And they, they, they disowned her. And we had to send her to Louisville to Anne.

FOSL: That's not--is, is that Anita Smith? There was a couple of them like that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Well, we sent--it might have been. I don't know. We sent her up to Anne. And Anne took her into the movement.

FOSL: Interesting. Huh.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Now, I remember speaking in New York, years later, she 01:14:00was there. And she mentioned it at a rally in New York. Uh, some years later, she was there. And she identified herself as the young lady who had to get out.

FOSL: Ilene Carver, maybe?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Ilene, I think it was.

FOSL: Yeah, she stayed with Anne a long time. She ended up marrying a guy--


FOSL: Well, no.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Was that in Louisville?

FOSL: This guy that she married was in Louisville. He was, like, in prison or something for some race related--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Might have been. I--

FOSL: --you know--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I don't, I don't know.

FOSL: --injustice.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I never did see her again except that--when I was speaking there. Now, but Anne--I, uh--I, I got the idea of calling Anne and found--

FOSL: That's very interesting.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --it was actually--

FOSL: Uh-huh.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --just right.

FOSL: A lot of people say that about her. A lot of people say that about her.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I say she could mother anybody, make anybody feel comfortable. And this was a case of need where this family was just really--I remember this grandfather, saintly little-looking fellow. He 01:15:00was so distressed. He didn't know what to say because they ---------- (??) thought that she had lost her mind.

FOSL: Huh. And they were seg-, were they segregationists?


FOSL: Oh, yeah. Hmm. Well, um, because another thing that's interesting is, you know, I've talked to a few of the people from SNCC. I talked to Julian Bond, Jane Stembridge, Connie Curry--and they, uh--well, I guess they were the people--by the time 1960 rolled around and their generation got involved, they really definitely saw Anne and Carl and Jim, to some extent, but Anne and Carl as SCEF. Like, that's all they knew about SCEF in a way.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Anne and Carl personified SCEF, even more than I did, and especially after Jim died. I forget what year he died now. But--and, uh, we went to Mobile, went to New Orleans, uh, and had a thing for him.

FOSL: Right. Yeah.


SHUTTLESWORTH: I've been involved in a whole lot of stuff.

FOSL: Yeah, that's a long time to go back. Um, but another thing that I--well, I thought so interesting about the, the interviews with the SNCC people, is that every one of them heard rumors that, like, you really shouldn't get too close to these people--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --to communism, yeah.

FOSL: --you know, all this. But they never could think of, like, the source of the rumors. It was, like, very unclear in their memories as to who said it, what they said, that--but everybody discussed this atmosphere that surrounded them. And I'm just so curious to--you know, I wish I could get more specifics on that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I don't know. I've, I've been always so very direct in what I believe, what I say, and what I do to, uh--and I don't pay too much attention to rumors, actually. I, I just didn't let it get me. 01:17:00Um--

FOSL: Well, I guess by the time those people came along, they were so young, you know. And they, they, uh--Anne did break through that, that atmosphere with them. But it took a lot of doing, I think.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, yeah, yeah. And well, I think Anne--Anne was the type could hear a person's, uh, past, no matter what it had been. And some of them had been, been, been--well, some of those kids had actually violated some laws.

FOSL: Oh, sure.


FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: But Anne would--Anne would hear them. And, and they might have been in--you know, at, at that time, everybody was starting up stuff that's new. You know, and it, it didn't go or did go and--or they fail, or they got disillusioned or something. But SCEF was the thing that, that they could come to and have, uh, almost free expression, total expression, and feel like they're in the movement. 01:18:00And, uh--and, and, and Anne and Carl--now, one of the things that I have to admire for them is they never did get carried on with--and the only difference between them and some of the, the Black Power people-- they never did, uh, get, uh, do or die (??) that, uh--that, that blacks and whites supposed to be together. And you've got to give Anne credit for, for that because, you see, Anne usually can, can take anybody in and push their idea. But black and white together, that's, that's been their hallmark. And even when, when these people were coming in when, when we were saying this to them. And, and to some of it was--it, it had not been the greatest thing because they had been in movements which, you know, might have 'down whites' and all this kind of stuff. But SCEF, that was the hallmark of SCEF. And I'm not sure that at one time, Anne might not have felt as if in some situations, maybe, people 01:19:00could do this or that to get themselves together. But it, it was her thing. She, she was basically sound in, in her pushing.

FOSL: Well, do you think that as long as you've known her, that she's always had that message about whites getting--

SHUTTLESWORTH: White and the black together? Oh--

FOSL: Well, that too, definitely. But, but, like, the importance of whites to get involved, you know--

SHUTTLESWORTH: That's, that's her central thing.

FOSL: That's what I think. It, uh--do you think that has been more recent or--

SHUTTLESWORTH: No, no, no, no, no--

FOSL: --like, does that go all the way back.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --no, no, no, no. That was way back, even when we organized SOC. And this young white girl, Judy Hann (??) in, in Birmingham.

FOSL: Right. Well, what about--

SHUTTLESWORTH: ----------(??) whites--

FOSL: --when you first met her, though? What about back in the fifties?


FOSL: Yeah?

SHUTTLESWORTH: About, uh, whites and blacks together?

FOSL: Um-hm. And getting whites involved, especially.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think that's been her central--if there's any one thing that can discuss her center, it's total equality for everybody and, 01:20:00and, and that whites ought to understand that they are in this thing too, and they're losers just like everybody else.

FOSL: Yeah, I, I definitely believe that is a central--

SHUTTLESWORTH: She hadn't, she hadn't--and I never heard her at any one time come from that principal.

FOSL: Um, now this is a big question. But if you had to assess her significance in the civil rights movement, how would you do it?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I think that in that side of it--and, and I see the two as coming to one. I, I saw a need. And maybe there was time when civil liberties--they had--you had to turn to civil liberties, the right to speak out, [clock chimes] the right to differ. And over here 01:21:00civil rights was--includes our right to be and the right to fight for everybody. But they came together in one. And I think she was as important on that side as I was as I was on the other side. And that in the, the meeting of us two, especially, and three, Carl and Jim, four, all of us--that, that it's the civil rights and civil liberties forces came so that you don't hear much about civil liberties now as you do civil rights.

FOSL: That's right. Hmm. I see that.

SHUTTLESWORTH: To me it's one fight. And I saw it as that to begin with. I saw it--the aspect--but then I did all I could, and used my- -and Anne was so proud. You take the Greensboro situation, even after Dr. King had died. Uh--

FOSL: You're talking about the shooting of the--


FOSL: --C. W. P. people.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Uh, Joe Lowery didn't want to really go up there. 01:22:00And, uh, I think it was--where, where were we? Was it Greensboro or North Carolina? Somewhere. Uh, but we stopped at Duke. Was it Duke? Somewhere close.

FOSL: Duke is in Durham.


FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: That's on the way to North Carolina, wasn't it?

FOSL: Yeah, from here. Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, well, we, we stopped in Durham there, and, uh, we weren't at Duke, but we stopped there in a bus station or something. And they didn't want to give us a bus. So we started demonstrating right there.

FOSL: Huh.

SHUTTLESWORTH: We started a little demonstrating. We started marching in the station. (laughs) We got the buses rolling. Oh, yeah. And, uh, went on to Greensboro. But I remember Anne had tried to get Joe Lowery to speak out. Joe was the sword (??). But Anne, Anne had got me. And I had no hesitation. I said, "Yeah." And then my public 01:23:00statement was, "Dr. King would not be a liar and not say that all people have the right--and that nobody has right to shoot down people, whatever their belief." That was right down in there ----------(??). So Joe finally c-, come on in. But he, he came because I was there. Because what I said was good enough for the president of SCLC.

FOSL: Yeah, he came a long way, I think, in those years.

SHUTTLESWORTH: He ----------(??) did--

FOSL: That's the--that's the first time I ever heard of Anne Braden. I was at that, that, that big demonstration, February of 1979.


FOSL: Yeah, or when was it? February of 1980 to commemorate what had happened.


FOSL: I forget--forgotten now. But that was the first time I ever heard of her.


FOSL: And that was the first big demonstration I ever went to. Um--

SHUTTLESWORTH: I don't know whether I was in that. But I was in the main thing back there when they--you know, it's amazing. I could have gotten shot on in so many places. Lord, He just let me--it's something 01:24:00(??).

FOSL: Have you seen the new, uh, book on the Birmingham movement?


FOSL: It's by a guy called Glenn Eskew.


FOSL: I brought it. I thought you might want to look at it.


FOSL: Um, but he talks about that, that you just, like--it's like a super-human effort, some of those things. It's like, how could you stand up when they're beating you that bad, you know?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah. And, uh, James Farmer came to Montgomery after that rally. Kennedy's--you--I'm sure had I been on that, uh, bus, uh, I might have--

FOSL: Freedom Rides.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --I might have gotten killed once it left because everybody was looking out for me. But even Kennedy's--Seigenthaler-- Kennedy's aid--was beaten up.

FOSL: Yeah. I know it was terrible.

SHUTTLESWORTH: But, uh, Robert Kennedy, I'm sure, had, uh, me arrested 01:25:00because he asked me during the thing--you know, I, I wish the, the country could hear a tape of, of our discussion. Robert said, "Well, what can I do?" I said, "Well, you can get the buses rolling," blah- blah-blah. Said, "Well, what can we do?" Said, "The, the drivers won't talk to you?" I said, "I don't hire no buses." "Well, wait a minute. I'll call you back." So he said to ----------(??), "White drivers wouldn't drive." He said, "Okay. We, we'll--we'll send a Negro on an Air Force jet. Be ready in one hour." That's when the buses--(laughs). Said, "Oh, I got good news for you." Uh, he called Bull Connor up, and Connor cussed him out when he told him ----------(??) that Kennedy boy had a way of doing it, whatever else they say about them. So Bull agreed to escort us to the city line. He thought that was great victory. "Mr. Shuttlesworth, I got good news." "And what's that?" "Mr. Connor has agreed to escort you to the city line." I said, "Mr. 01:26:00Kennedy, do you realize that the Anniston bus was burned at the city line?"

FOSL: Right. (laughs)

SHUTTLESWORTH: He said, "Oh, my God. Wait a minute. I'll call you back." (laughs) Uh, so he called the governor up--Patterson at that time. And, uh, Patterson, uh--was that Patterson or Wallace in there? I'm trying to think. But that was--

FOSL: Sixty-one.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --sixty-one. Wallace was in there.

FOSL: Yeah, I--

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, because--because when the buses rolled, Wallace was the governor. We--he had a, a, a limited--no, Governor Patterson, I'm sorry. Because I didn't understand--I said--

FOSL: Yeah, I thought--I think it was. I think that's right.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, Governor Patterson. And, uh, he said, "Well, I'll call you back." He said, "Well, do you have to go to Mississippi?" I said, "Well, Mr. Kennedy, I thought you said that the government can't tell (??) for what it voted. We don't let the Klan tell us not to go, so the government sure can't tell us." So, "Do you have 01:27:00to go to Mississippi?" He said, "My God. ----------(??) ain't been to Mississippi in a long time." I said, "That's why we must go, so we can." (laughs) He said, "Oh, my God. I'll call you back." So he called the governor of, uh, New Orleans and the governor of Mississippi. "We'll lay out two things. If you--if you want to go." I said, "No, we ain't--don't want to go through New Orleans. We're going--" (laughs) "--so he got--so then he said--and then, I remember this, "Just, just come to me, you know." He said, "Oh, are you gonna ride?" I said, "Mr. Kennedy, don't you know I don't tell other people to do what I don't do?" He said, "But you don't have to go, do you?" I said, "Mr. Kennedy, I lead folk into battle." He said, "I'm mighty sorry to hear that." Uh, I said, "I appreciate what you did." And boy, the buses beg--getting ready to roll. And I had my ticket in my pocket, you know. And (sighs) getting ready to go, climbed up on the bus. Bus was getting to roll. And I'm the last one, you know. Here comes Jamie 01:28:00Moore, Bull's assistant. "Well, Lee, are you gonna ride the bus?" I said, "I most certainly am." I'm big--talking big, you know. He said, "Uh, we'll give you a lawful order to not." Well, I said, "You can't tell me not to ride." And my pulled my ticket out and flashed it in his face. And he said, uh, something. So I just turned around and started on up. And he grabbed me on my collar and pulled me right back down. (laughs)

FOSL: Wow. And arrested you?


FOSL: On what charge?

SHUTTLESWORTH: Disobeying a lawful command.

FOSL: Wow.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I don't know what the command was.

FOSL: Right. Huh.

SHUTTLESWORTH: And so I was at least put in jail by the bus rolls (??).

FOSL: Interesting. I didn't know that. You know, Anne talked about riding on those rides, too. And, you know, Carl was in prison at that time. She just said--she was writing, and she said, "I figure only one of us better be in prison." I mean, they had the children.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah. And she--and, and she always worked on a strategy like that. But anyway, the buses went on. And all of them were beaten 01:29:00up. And, and I'm sure--I feel fairly certain now that that might have been my salvation because I'm sure that the--my picture and everything- -they would have gotten--

FOSL: You might be--

SHUTTLESWORTH: But I was in jail, see. So I got--and bonded right out and went home and rushed, you know. And I was shaving. I remember. My, my mustache hadn't been cut off but once since I was about fifteen years old, or whenever it come up then. And I was, uh, shaving fast (??) and whacked almost half of it off. And then took it all off. So if you see a picture of that--the Freedom Riders, uh, look like your lip's sore (??). And I made a statement. Governor Patterson was the most guilty party. I remember that. But during the conversation back there in the room, uh, Farmer was at the airport. And somebody said, "Somebody needs to go." So I said, "I'll go." Then--I don't know how we 01:30:00did it. We went to the airport, came back. And then mobbed and those, those, those, uh, Klan members beating them marshals and everything- -beating the government marshals. And, you know, it's amazing, I went to him. And Farmer was nervous. I didn't know he was that nervous. I said, "All right. Coming through, folks. Get back please." And we just--we walked right on through.

FOSL: Wow. Is that right?

SHUTTLESWORTH: (laughs) I don't know what would've happened if we--and, and we went--came right over that bend. James Farmer wrote something about me. He thought I was the greatest person he ever (??)--or Martin. All of them said that. But I just didn't have any fear. I don't know--I don't know how to explain it.

FOSL: Well, talking about 1961 makes me think of one more question I, I didn't ask you that--what role did you play in the, uh, Carl Braden clemency petition? I know Anne really roun-, uh, rounded people up. Well, you were a signer.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I was a signer. And, and she would use me--my name, as 01:31:00to help get other people. I gave her permission to use that.

FOSL: Did you ever have any conversations with King about that? Because she really worked on him to lead that--head that thing up because of that name recognition. And he did do it. But--

SHUTTLESWORTH: He did. But I think--

FOSL: --he got the sig--

SHUTTLESWORTH: --it was after--it was though me that, uh--that, uh--she wouldn't have--she would've asked me, probably, before she asked him. And then once she asked him, I would--I, I, I would've come in there.

FOSL: Start working on it.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Because he would have known I was going to be on it anyway.

FOSL: Um-hm.

SHUTTLESWORTH: See, it's almost like it's a done deal. ----------(??), and, and it would look bad on there. And he's supposed to be, you know--but, uh, that was the sort of thing they did--they probably wouldn't have done had I not been--as I see it, God had his own way, you know. As I say to people now when I speaking, "God has you in your place. And nobody can beat you doing what you can do if you go with 01:32:00His--the right intention, with His power, and all that. And I just feel like that. In fact, I know that's so.

FOSL: Okay. Now, are there any other questions about Anne that I haven't asked you? Is there anything that I haven't asked you about that you think I ought to know?

SHUTTLESWORTH: I don't know any words that could describe Anne as a beautifully committed, consecrated--so far as freedom is concerned- -woman. And I don't know anybody that's more--that's been more, uh, consistent in her efforts to freedom--

FOSL: I agree with you.

SHUTTLESWORTH: --without wavering. The death of her husband didn't deter her. The, the difficult problems she had even when some of the people whom she, uh, befriended might have turned against her, within the movement, I'm saying. And, um--and I think it, it, it, uh, goes 01:33:00to, to certify that because on-, once SCEF died, it was in her blood. She called me, and, uh, I believe--let's see.

FOSL: Seventy-five, this would have been.

SHUTTLESWORTH: Yeah, yeah. And, and Judy Hann (??). I don't whether Judy came up here or not.

FOSL: I don't know.

SHUTTLESWORTH: I'm not sure.

FOSL: I really hadn't gotten that far. I mean, I know about when SCEF-- uh, SOC was founded, but--

SHUTTLESWORTH: But, but she realized that if I would have been in it, and, and--it would been a success in Birmingham if I had--and I said, "Of course, we ought to go--let's keep moving."And I think I reminded her not, not pushing it--that, that I had it prophesized that SOC would be killed, you know.


FOSL: You mean SCEF?

SHUTTLESWORTH: SCEF. SCEF would have--would have been, uh, obliterated by taking so many people in. And you couldn't discipline--see, you c-, you can't discipline people who, who, uh--will adhere to something and really not mean it. I think that was a part of it.

FOSL: And well, there was no lines of authority, in a way.

SHUTTLESWORTH: You know, Anne has almost, uh, admitted that. But she never discusses it in any detail way and I never press her, you know. But it's, it's an admission, she go--

[End of interview.]