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Daring act by four teenagers tumbles racial barriers

Date: January 27, 1985

Author: Jim Schlosser

Biographical/Historical abstract: Jim Scholosser (1943- ), a reporter and editor for the Greensboro News and Record since 1967, covered political rallies and school integration during the 1960s and 1970s.

Additional contributor: Clarence Lee Harris


Written twenty five years after the Greensboro sit-ins at Woolworth's, this article was published in the Greensboro News & Record and examines the event itself, as well as the effect it had on the Greensboro community at large. Schlosser describes an acceptance of segregation at the time largely because it was the traditional practice and had not been challenged, so many thought it was appropriate. In addition to statements from the sit-in participants, the piece also includes statements from white entrepreneur, Ralph Johns, who owned a store downtown that welcomed black customers. Johns takes credit for inspiring the sit-in participants. Also quoted is former police officer E.R. Wynn, who was involved in securing Woolworth's after the demonstrations started. Ed Zane, a former Greensboro city councilman who served as a mediator between the store and the students, and Geneva Tisdale, who worked at Woolworth's at the time of the sit-ins, are also quoted.

This article was saved in a scrapbook by Clarence “Curly” Harris, manager of the Greensboro Woolworth store at the time of the 1960 sit-ins. Also included is Harris’ handwritten response to the article disputing some information in it, such as the assertion that he was “outraged” at the students' actions.


Format of original: Newspaper Clippings

Collection: Clarence Lee Harris Papers

Repository: The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Item#: 1.4.937

Rights: It is responsibility of the user to follow the copyright law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Materials are not to be reproduced in published works without written consent, and any use should credit Civil Rights Greensboro and the appropriate repository.

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