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during the day, but pretty much everybody knew what they were doing and just went on and did what they had to do.

Let me come back to the strikers for a minute. They were new to unions.


How many of them were there?


There were about 400. With maybe a few exceptions, they were all women, and all of them were black. We had no support with the whites. The whites were nurses and some professional people, but primarily it was a black issue and it was viewed as that right away. All the problems of a strike. We had a headquarters. It was the headquarters of the RWDSU local that was in Charleston, and their offices became the strike headquarters. There were strike kitchens, all of the rigmarole. The rank-and-file strikers were involved in all aspects of the strike. There were a lot of them. It was a question of keeping them busy, keeping them occupied, sending them out to picket lines, defying injunctions, come to the rallies at night, speak, go visit people. It was a lot of just active things. They would come daily.

Then Ralph was the big public figure, and I note here that there was a meeting in the basement of the Morris Brown Church. Reverend Grady was the minister of the Morris Brown Church. I remember Ralph debating with himself on strategy--should he be soft or tough? How far out should he go? He decides that he's going to take a soft line, but when he gets up before the audience, the audience begins to react, he gets carried with them. So that you end up with the beginning of mass arrests.

After a rally, everybody goes out and marches, and you go to the picket line and you begin the idea of mass arrest. Before it was over, a thousand people went to jail. Some of the strikers went to jail with their children. One of the women who went to jail, who was not a striker, wrote a very, very moving piece. She kept a diary in the jail. I forget her name. I have it in the office. She kept a diary in jail, and in some strange way, I got hold of the diary after it was over, or maybe it was late in the strike. Everybody was very, very moved. The beginning--I'm trying to reconstruct it--it's this time at night and we're all in the jail, in the cell, and sometimes the jails became more than cells, because they opened fields. There was no space for them. She says, “I feel that I am strong tonight, because black people are marching for the first time. The black people are getting themselves together.” It's just very beautifully written, and it had an ending on it, “And everybody is doing their own thing.” It sort of tailed off, so that it was very, very real and very moving. When I saw it, I decided that I

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