Freedom Summer was a nonviolent effort by civil rights activists to integrate Mississippi's segregated political system during 1964.
The SNNCP and Core recruited white college students to work. The students helped African-American residents try to register to vote, establish a new political party, and learn about history and politics in newly-formed Freedom Schools.
Voting Rights Act
Because black Mississippi residents were not allowed to vote, they held a parallel "Freedom Election" in November and challenged the right of the all-white Mississippi congressional delegation to represent the state in Washington in January 1965.
Residents and volunteers were met by extraordinary violence, including murders, bombings, kidnappings, and torture. Much of this was covered on national television and focused the country's attention on civil rights issues for the first time.
Public outrage helped spur the U.S. Congress to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
“Overview of the 1964 Freedom Summer.” Wisconsin Historical Society, 2 Apr. 2013, www.wisconsinhistory.org/Records/Article/CS3707.