Sept. 29, 1962

Former Gov. and Mrs. Ross Barnett at Paul Johnson’s Inauguration Credit: Wikipedia

Mississippi Gov. Ross Barnett spoke at halftime of the University of Mississippi’s game against Kentucky. Barnett whipped up the all-white crowd, which some compared to a Nazi rally in Nuremberg. While Confederate battle flags waved defiantly, Barnett told the crowd of more than 40,000 gathered, “I love Mississippi. I love her people. Our customs. I love and respect our heritage.” 

The next day, an insurrection took place on the Ole Miss campus after the admission of James Meredith, the first known Black student to attend.

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The stories of investigative reporter Jerry Mitchell have helped put four Klansmen and a serial killer behind bars. His stories have also helped free two people from death row, exposed injustices and corruption, prompting investigations and reforms as well as the firings of boards and officials. He is a Pulitzer Prize finalist, a longtime member of Investigative Reporters & Editors, and a winner of more than 30 other national awards, including a $500,000 MacArthur “genius” grant. After working for three decades for the statewide Clarion-Ledger, Mitchell left in 2019 and founded the Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting.