Larry Rubin - United States
It was voter registration work and what that meant was walking down red clay roads in very rural communities, and knocking on peoples’ doors, on African American peoples’ doors, and encouraging them to go and register to vote. Often we had to go back to the same person many, many times. Often we had to go to friends who we knew who were a little bit braver than the first and ask the friends to encourage their friends. We organized what we called mass meetings at churches, the only purpose being to build the courage of people. We did organize groups to go down to try to register to vote, as a group, ‘cause there’s certain protection in groups. ...But it was rather boring, tedious work, just repeating the same thing over and over again to people who were absolutely justified in being afraid to try to register to vote because what would happen to them is generally they would lose their jobs, maybe they would have their house burned down, maybe they would get beaten up. Several got killed. When you went to register to vote, your name appeared in the paper for two weeks. Everybody that even tried, for two weeks their name was in the paper. So everybody knew who went down to the courthouse, just to try to register, even if they were turned away.