The University of Southern Mississippi -- McCain Library and Archives
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Collection Title: Funchess (Glenda) Civil Rights Collection
Collection Number: M325
Volume: .25 cu.ft.
Glenda Funchess was born on August 17, 1954, in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, to Carl and Clara Funchess. She has six sisters and five brothers. In the summer of 1964, Funchess attended the freedom school at Mt. Zion Baptist Church. Claiming Freedom Summer was a turning point in her life, she credits the experience as her inspiration to become a civil rights attorney.
Funchess graduated high school with honors in 1972 in the Hattiesburg public school system's first fully integrated class. She earned a Bachelor's degree in political science and history from Texas Southern University in 1976, a Master's degree in criminal justice and counseling from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1978, and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 1984. Funchess currently practices law in Hattiesburg and teaches in the Criminal Justice department at USM.
Funchess remains actively involved in the civil rights crusade. She organizes the ceremony honoring two local civil rights heroes which is held each year at Mt. Zion on the annual commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1994, she organized the Hattiesburg portion of the statewide 30th anniversary reunion of Freedom Summer. She has authored a play for youth about Dr. King's visit to Mt. Zion in 1968. Thanks to Funchess' efforts, Mt. Zion bears Hattiesburg's first historical marker honoring a civil rights site.
This collection consists of materials that document Freedom Summer and the Civil Rights Movement in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
Folder 1 contains a pamphlet entitled "Turning Point: The 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer," published by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, which details the situation in Mississippi during 1964, as well as the efforts and goals of the Summer Project (1994)
Folder 2 contains two articles about freedom schools, one about Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Hattiesburg, and another by Dr. Sandra Adickes, a former Palmer's Crossing freedom school teacher (1993 - ca. 1994)
Folder 3 contains two essays by Funchess entitled "Thirty Years After Brown v. Board of Education" and "Freedom Summer," which describe growing up during the Civil Rights Movement (1984 - ca. 1994)
Folder 4 contains a pamphlet entitled "Mississippi Homecoming 1994: Freedom Summer 1964 Revisited," published by the Mississippi Community Foundation, which lists names and addresses of participants in the 1964 Summer Project (June 1994)
Folder 5 contains several articles about the 1994 Freedom Summer reunion (June - September 1994)
Folder 6 contains materials related to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., including news clippings, a letter from Yolanda King to Carolyn Funchess, and a skit written by Glenda Funchess about Dr. King's visit to Mt. Zion Baptist Church in 1968 (December 1968 - April 1993; undated)
Folder 7 contains programs from commemorative services held at Mt. Zion Baptist Church in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 1997 - January 1999)
Folder 8 contains items related to slain Hattiesburg civil rights activist Vernon Dahmer, including news clippings, correspondence, documentation from the court case, and a program from memorial services held for Dahmer in March 1998 (March 1994 - March 1998)
Folder 9 contains the program from a "roast" in honor of Father Peter Quinn, who was pastor and advisor of the Catholic Youth Organization at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Hattiesburg from 1966 to 1976 (June 1998)