Walter Tillow oral history interview conducted by David P. Cline in Louisville, Kentucky, 2013-06-21.
Summary: Walter Tillow discusses how he joined the Civil Rights Movement as a college student and how that led him into labor and leftist movements. He describes his childhood in New York City and the leftist politics of his parents, as well as how he learned about the Movement as a college student at Harpur College and as a graduate student at Cornell University. In 1963 he joined the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and moved to Fayette County, Georgia where he worked on voter registration drives. He later worked in the SNCC communication office in Atlanta. He describes in detail the movement for the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. In 1965 he left the Movement to work for the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE) and he later worked for the Communist Party.
Acquisition Note: The Civil Rights History Project is a joint project of the American Folklife Center, Library of Congress and the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of African American History and Culture to collect video and audio recordings of personal histories and testimonials of individuals who participated in the Civil Rights movement.
Existence and Location of Copies: Copies of items are also held at the National Museum of African American History and Culture (U.S.).
Conditions Governing Access: Collection is open for research. Access to recordings may be restricted. To request materials, please contact the Folklife Reading Room at http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.afc/folklife.contact.
Related Archival Materials: Artifacts associated with the interview are at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Biographical History: Walter Tillow was a civil rights activist with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). He was also a labor organizer for the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE), an anti-war activist, and member of the Communist Party.