“A Tight Little Town” Tackles Its Future, 1980–2000

Carol V. R. George

in One Mississippi, Two Mississippi

Published in print May 2015 | ISBN: 9780190231088
Published online October 2016 | e-ISBN: 9780190231118 | DOI:
“A Tight Little Town” Tackles Its Future, 1980–2000

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The last two decades of the twentieth century brought two important moderate voices to the government of Mississippi, suggesting that Mt. Zion’s witness for a more inclusive society was having an effect. Under governor William Winter, education was reformed. In 1989, the secretary of state, Dick Molpus, a native of the Neshoba timber industry, used the twenty-fifth commemoration service at Mt. Zion Church to apologize to the families of the murdered civil rights workers and affirm the goals they had hoped to achieve. Though he faced a racist backlash when he ran for governor, there were new opportunities to focus positive attention on the area. The local paper covered the phenomenal career of Philadelphia football player Marcus Dupree and it also started examining old racist issues. The 1989 film Mississippi Burning drew national attention to the state’s racist culture. Evidence was uncovered that incriminated the leader of the murderous conspiracy of 1964.

Keywords: William Winter; Dick Molpus; Marcus Dupree; Neshoba Democrat; Mississippi Burning

Chapter.  9730 words. 

Subjects: History of Religion

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