James Meredith reads news about his entry into Ole Miss

50th Anniversary Of The Integration Of Ole Miss

October 1, 2012 | In Essays,Event News & Updates,Featured,Learn

October 1, 2012 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the integration of Ole Miss, The University Of Mississippi. James Meredith, the first black student to attend Ole Miss, was registered, and began attending classes amidst a violent upheaval. Today the turbulent history of racism in the state is taught there, and African-American music such as blues is celebrated in the state, but remembering what it was like for black people in Mississippi as recently as 1962 can be eye-opening. National Public Radio’s Debbie Elliott filed this report, Integrating Ole Miss: A Transformative, Deadly Riot, about the integration of Ole Miss fifty years ago.

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Gretchen October 23, 2012 at 4:00 pm

I heard a story on NPR around the time of this 50th anniversary. A journalist was interviewing Old Miss students about how integrated they think the campus is today compared to 50 years ago. In the conversation, the students were informed as to how the “Old Miss” nickname came about. In antebellum times, the plantation owners were referred to by the slaves as Old Master and owners’ wives were called Old Miss. A wealthy couple donated a significant amount to the university in its early years and the woman requested that nickname be used because she was fond of it. The students were surprised to hear this story and they said it changed their impression of the nickname.

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