Freedom Summer

Time Periods: 20th Century, 1961
Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity

Freedom SummerThis 2-hour documentary by award-winning filmmaker Stanley Nelson introduces viewers to the history of Freedom Summer in Mississippi in 1964. The film uses documentary footage and interviews with veterans of the southern Freedom Movement.

The interviewees include Julian Bond, Rita Schwerner Bender, Bob Moses, Pete Seeger, Tracy Sugarman, Dorothy Zellner, Larry Rubin, Taylor Branch, Charlie Cobb, Barbara Jan Nave, and Roscoe Jones, and Gwendolyn Zoharah Simmons.

The film has three major sections:

  • Conditions and organizing in Mississippi prior to Freedom Summer
  • Orientation of Freedom Summer volunteers, Freedom Schools, and voter registration during the summer of 1964
  • Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party in Atlantic City

Produced by Firelight Media for PBS American Experience.


Share a story, question, or resource from your classroom.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *