“Opening the Closed Society” Calendar of Events

Fall 2012


The University of Mississippi Gospel Choir and from Community Choirs will capture in song the feel of the times surrounding the 1962 integration of The University of Mississippi.

Time & Location:  TBD

Contact:  Valeria Ross @ vross@olemiss.edu


Morning Event

The Black Student Union will present a marker to The University of Mississippi permanently marking the classroom where James Meredith’s first class was held.


Student leaders, faculty and staff will follow a processional led by James Meredith from Baxter

Hall to the Civil Rights Monument located between the Lyceum and the Library


Harry Belafonte will present the Keynote Address for “Opening the Closed Society”.

Past Events:


Silver Pond Dedication

  • Panel of Alumni at the Overby Center

Alumni group included Speaker Governor William Winter, Elizabeth Nichols Silver, 1953-54 Editor of the Mississippian, Daniel P. Jordan, 1960 UM graduate, Edwin N. Williams, 1964-65 Editor of Daily Mississippian

  • Silver Pond Dedication Ceremony

Silver Pond Dedication – Speaker John Robin Bradley, Chairman of Silver Commemorative Committee



David Sansing Lecture

David Sansing Lecture on “Meredith and Ole Miss:  A Pivotal Moment in the Civil Rights Movement”



William Doyle Lecture

William Doyle Lecture – Author of the book An American Insurrection:  James Meredith and the Battle of Oxford spoke on Revisiting an American Insurrection



Curtis Wilkie Lecture

Curtis Wilkie lecture for the Annual Black & White Affair – Recognizing the Integration of The University of Mississippi



Maurice Hobson Lecture

Maurice Hobson lecture “The Bravado of The Black New South: Intersections of Race, Class and Politics in Post-Civil Rights Black Atlanta, Georgia



David W. Blight Lecture

The Gilder-Jordan Lecture in Southern History presented David W. Blight speaking on “American Oracle:  The Civil War in the Civil Rights Era, and Our Own Time”


Black History Month Kick-off -Speaker Nick Lott   @        Noon, Union Lobby

Nic Lott is the first African American to be elected by the university’s student body to serve as the Associated Student Body President.

Contact:          Valeria Ross, vross@olemiss.edu, 662.915.7247


Exhibition viewable through October 2012, Special Collections, J.D. Williams Library

Current Exhibition in the Faulkner Room, Special Collections, “We Shall Always March  Ahead:” Mississippi and the Civil Rights Movements. The exhibition features items documenting Mississippi during the Civil Rights Movement. Cases include: the life of Medgar Evers; music and the Movement; photographs of school segregation in Mississippi; Mississippi politics; and the integration of the University of Mississippi, among others.

Contact:          Jennifer Ford, jwford@olemiss.edu, 662-915-7639


Brown Bag by Dr. Michael V. Williams, Noon, Special Collections, J.D. Williams Library

“From Just Can See in the Morning to Can’t See at Night: Civil Rights Activism and Resistance in the Life of Medgar Wiley Evers”  Dr. Michael V. Williams, Assistant Professor of History and African American Studies at Mississippi State University will speak on the life and times of Medgar Evers in Mississippi.
Contact:          Jennifer Ford, jwford@olemiss.edu, 662-915-7639


Keynote Lecture by Marian Wright Edelman, 7:00, Ford Center

Marian Edelman, lifelong advocate for disadvantaged Americans, is a graduate of Spelman College and Yale Law School, began her career in the mid-60’s when, as the first Black woman admitted to the Mississippi Bar, she directed the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund Office in Jackson, Mississippi.  In 1968, she moved to Washington, D.C. as counsel for the Poor

Contact:          Susan R. Grayzell, sgrayzell@olemiss.edu


2012 Black History Month Concert “Celebrating 50 Years of Integration”, 7:30 pm, Nutt Aud.

A musical celebration of 50 years of Integration at Ole Miss. The concert will include                    performances by Caline Waugh (soprano), Fred Dunlap (percussion), Guelel Kumba                           (voice and guitar), African Drum and Dance Ensemble (directed by George Dor), Steel                           Band (directed by Ricky Burkhead), and Jazz Ensemble (directed by Michael Worthy).                           African American, Caribbean, and African performers, composers, and genres will be                           amply represented in the program that includes a premier of a George W. K. Dor’s                           composition.
Contact:           George Dor, gwdor1@olemiss.edu , 662-915-7269


Brown Bag Luncheon: Civil Rights in Mississippi, Noon, Faulkner Room, J.D. Williams Library
This event will be an opportunity to hear stories of Mississippi during the Civil Rights                          Movement, from faculty members and members of the Oxford community. Bring your lunch                          and relive history with us!
Contact:          Heather Capps Witten, hlcapps@olemiss.edu, 662-816-0275


Day of Dialogue, Overby Auditorium

Alumni of The University of Mississippi will participate in dialogue sessions throughout the day.  Former Alumni share and dialogue about their undergraduate experiences at UM

Alumni Panels

10:30 am         UM African American Alumni Serving in the STEM Fields”

The Price and Payoff in the STEM Areas

1:00 pm           “50 Years of Integration: Opening the Closed Society

Former UM student leaders discuss how opening doors on campus contributed to successful lives as University of Mississippi alumni

2:30 pm           From Black Student Union Choir to The University of Mississippi Gospel Choir

Gospel Choir alumni share how the choir served as a driving force of student activism centered upon faith

Contact:          Julian Gilner, jgilner@alumni.olemiss.edu

Valeria Ross, vross@olemiss.edu


Lecture, Myrlie Evers-Williams, 4:00 pm, Fulton Chapel      


Selma to Montgomery: The Long March to Freedom @ Noon, Barnard Observatory Lecture Hall

Barbara H. Combs, Assistant Professor of Sociology and Southern Studies

Southern Studies Brown Bag Lunch & Lecture Series

Contact :         Mary Hartwell Howorth, cssc@olemiss.edu


Brown Bag Lecture featuring Susan Glisson, Noon, Faulkner Room, J.D. Williams Library