On the morning of May 11, 1966, Supreme Court Justice Byron White called FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover's top assistant, Cartha "Deke" DeLoach, with a special request.
Could he come by with friends for a special tour of FBI headquarters? The answer was an immediate yes, and early that afternoon, White showed up at the FBI's D.C. headquarters with two of his law clerks and a college-age male friend from California.
The group toured the FBI Building for more than 90 minutes, and in a memo placed in White's FBI file, White was described as "most congenial throughout," and "quite interested in firearms."
The memo was one of dozens released this month by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in response to a request under the Freedom of Information Act filed after White's death on April 15, 2002. Under the law, most privacy considerations that keep the government from disclosing FBI files during a person's life fall away upon death.
Included in the file are new details about a man who assaulted White in 1982 in Salt Lake City as White was about to give a speech - the first assault on a Supreme Court justice in nearly a century. Another memo provides new information about White's hospitalization in 1962, when he was deputy attorney general in Robert Kennedy's Justice Department.
But mainly the file chronicles the occasional contacts between White and the FBI, a relationship that evolved into a cordial, routine friendship between White and Director Hoover. When Hoover died in 1972, White was the only associate justice to join Chief Justice Warren Burger at Hoover's funeral.
"It wasn't a specially close friendship," recalls White's biographer Dennis Hutchinson, law professor at the University of Chicago. "But Hoover was very careful to keep good relations with people like Justice White."
In and of itself, the 1966 special tour of the FBI Building is unremarkable, matched by several other family tours mentioned in the file and dozens of other small favors that Hoover and his aides showered on top officials - including Supreme Court justices - of all stripes.
It was all part of Hoover's unrelenting campaign to curry favor with - and keep tabs on - those in power, says Alexander Charns, a Durham, N.C., lawyer who wrote the 1992 book "Cloak and Gavel" on the relationship between the FBI and the Supreme Court. Charns has seen the FBI file on White. "It was the same public relations brown-nosing machine that Hoover carried out so well," says Charns.
There were numerous times when Hoover needed friends on the high court, Charns contends, and May 1966 was one of them - making White's tour of the FBI that month especially significant.
The FBI's eavesdropping practices were under increasing scrutiny at the time, and a pending case involving lobbyist Fred Black Jr. brought the Supreme Court into the controversy.
Black, a business associate of disgraced Lyndon Johnson aide Bobby Baker, was fighting his conviction on tax-evasion charges. In his petition to the Supreme Court, Black claimed among other things that the government had coerced his lawyer into betraying confidences in the case.
The Court routinely denied review in the case on May 2, 1966, but then Solicitor General Thurgood Marshall had more to say on the issue. It had come to his attention that in the course of its investigation, the FBI had bugged Black's hotel room and office in 1963. During the surveillance, the FBI overheard some conversations between Black and his lawyers. Marshall wanted to inform the Court of the new information as a sort of "confession of error" in which the government tells the justices about incorrect or improper handling of a case.
Hoover, according to FBI documents obtained by Charns, vehemently opposed Marshall's plan to tell the Court about the bugging. The embarrassing information, Hoover feared, would hurt him in ongoing FBI - Justice Department turf wars. Marshall informed the Supreme Court anyway in a highly unusual filing on May 24, prompting the justices on June 13 to order the government to detail the surveillance of Black. But in issuing the order, the Court noted that White refused.
In a separate letter to White, according to Charns' book, Marshall reminded the justice that he had received a letter from Hoover about the FBI's surveillance policies while serving as deputy AG. Hoover had sent a copy of the memo to Marshall. Since those policies were now at issue, White - a likely Hoover critic in the dispute, in Charns' view - took himself out of the Black case.
From 1960 to 1963, the ruling hierarchy of Lionel Corporation was General John B. Medaris, Roy Cohn and Joe Bonanno (Joe Bananas), a top Mafia man from New York, Las Vegas, Tucson and Montreal, Canada. Lionel Corporation during this period did over ninety percent of their business with the space agency and army ordnance furnishing such items as electronic equipment, rocket parts, chemical warfare agents and flame throwers. Also, during this period, General Medaris, though having retired in 1960, remained on active duty as special advisor to Army Intelligence in the Pentagon. The Lionel Corporation management was in direct contact with Louis Mortimer Bloomfield who, among other things, was a lawyer with offices in Tangiers, Morocco and Paris, France. Bloomfield was also the president of Heineken's Brewers, Ltd., Canada. General Medaris was a director of one of the land speculation companies of Bobby Baker and Senator George Smathers in Florida. Joe Bonanno (Joe Bananas) in his capacity as a Mafia leader, was associated in the Havana and Las Vegas gambling with L.J. McWillie, Clifford Jones and others.
In addition to J. Edgar Hoover's close association with Roy Cohn, he was also a long time friend of General Medaris. Joe Bonanno (Joe Bananas) had been a personal informer for J. Edgar Hoover for over a decade during 1963. Grant Stockdale, ex-United States Ambassador to Ireland and former George Smathers Administrative Assistant and a stock holder and officer in Bobby Baker's vending machine and Florida land transactions, knew and was closely associated with almost all of the top figures in the cabal. Shortly after President Kennedy's assassination on November 22, 1963, Grant Stockdale was pushed, shoved or fell from the fourteenth story of a Miami building and was killed immediately in the fall. As an officer in the Bobby Baker enterprises, Grant Stockdale had particular knowledge of a good part of the workings of the cabal and his death was one of a series made necessary to protect the group from public exposure...
Fred Black of Washington, D.C. was a lobbyist for North American Aircraft and business associate with Bobby Baker and Clifford Jones. Black has confirmed the connection between Jones, McWillie, Baker, Ruby and ex-Cuban President, Prio.
After November 22, 1963, Black publicly told many people in Washington, D.C. he had informed J. Edgar Hoover that an income tax conviction against him must be reversed or he would blow the lid off Washington with revelations of the assassination conspirators. Lobbyist Black prevailed upon J. Edgar Hoover to admit error before the Supreme Court where his case was reversed in 1966. Hoover did well to rescue Black from the conviction. Fred Black, while socially drinking with acquaintances in Washington has, on numerous occasions, been reported to have told of J. Edgar Hoover's and Bobby Baker's involvement in the assassination through Las Vegas, Miami and Havana gamblers. He named some of these as the Fox Brothers of Miami, McLaney of Las Vegas, New Orleans, Havana and Bahamas, Cliff Jones of Las Vegas, Carlos Prio Socarras of Havana, Bobby Baker and others. He stated there was also a connection in that some of the gamblers were Russian emigres.
Don Reynolds, Washington, D.C. businessman and associate of Bobby Baker and who had a number of questionable business transactions with Walter Jenkins on behalf of Lyndon Johnson, also gave testimony concerning Bobby Baker's involvement with the principals and he has stated on numerous public occasions that this group was behind the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Black was a stockholder with Baker in the Waikiki Savings & Loan Association in Honolulu. The other members were Clifford Jones and his law partner, Louis Weiner. There was the Farmers and Merchants State Bank in Tulsa where Jones joined Baker and Black in a stock deal and brought in a Miami pal by the name of Benny Sigelbaum, a courier of funds and documents to the Swiss banks for Permindex and the Syndicate.
Of all the enterprises, none could compare with the controversial Serv-U Corp., a Baker-Black controlled vending- machine firm. Ed Levinson, president of the Fremont Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada, was also a partner. Grant Stockdale, President of Serv-U and his money is covered later. Formed late in 1961, Serve-U Corporation provided vending machines for the automatic dispensing of food and drink in companies working on government contracts. In the next two years, Serv-U was awarded the lion-share of the vending business at three major aerospace firms - North American Aviation, Northrop Corporation and Thompson Ramo Wooldridge's Space Technology Laboratories. Baker and Black each bought stock in the company for $1 a share, while the others paid approximately $16 a share.
J Leland Atwood: We had this consultant whom Dutch Kindelberger hired. His name was Fred Black. He was supposed to get all the information on how to advise people in Washington, and he got into quite a bit of trouble, and Dutch Kindelberger had hired him on some basis, some people's recommendation, I don't remember who. He was very well connected in Congress, or appeared to be, and we employed him for several years. He got us in trouble through his relationships with Bobby Baker, who was the famous wheeler dealer back there that got involved with the savings and loan people and all that, and so eventually I had to let Fred go. Dutch Kindelberger had died in the meantime.
Martin Collins: Who did Black report to?
J Leland Atwood: I think he reported to Dutch Kindelberger first. I'd begun to consult him, actually. I thought he could do us some good in various ways. But Dutch had him finally reporting to, administratively at least, to Ted Braun, who lived here in Los Angeles. His company is still going. It's a public relations firm. But Ted is dead. Dutch thought Ted Braun might make sure that Black was reputable and things like that. But he did get into the Bobby Baker thing. I don't know that they ever tried to pin anything on Fred, but it was just nasty publicity. He'd talked us into putting in the vending machine system which was presumably a normal deal, but it turned out that Bobby Baker owned most of it. Bobby got a lot of Congressional raking over. Fred didn't get any sanctions or anything, but he just was classified as many consultants are today as some kind of an unnecessary type around Washington. So we finally took over the vending machine business and it was run by our employee group that handled the recreation facilities for the company, and I finally had to let Fred go. He had involved himself in a kind of a double dealing situation and then concealed it. Our lawyers thought it was what you might say, conflict of interest. I guess it was. So I let him go.
Martin Collins: This would have been in relation to a North American contract?
J Leland Atwood: No, it was in relation to the vending machine thing. Neither he nor Baker had disclosed their ownership in that, and our lawyer thought that it was conflict of interest and I'm sure it was. So I let him go. I fired him. He got into trouble afterwards. I heard that he's recently been in jail because he's been laundering money, accused of laundering drug money in one of the banks there in Washington.
Martin Collins: Do you recall, before Fred Black was hired as a consultant for North American, what his activities were? Was he a lobbyist in the modern parlance?
J Leland Atwood: Well, he'd done some work for AVCO and reportedly for General Electric. They were not considered competitive companies at that time. They were making engines and other things. Jim Kerr was head of AVCO then - and oh yes, Black had been involved in a lot of Missouri politics down there. He came from Joplin, Missouri, originally.
Martin Collins: What was the need for somebody, at this particular time, to do the kind of job that Fred Black apparently was doing, this intense, very personal liaison with Congress?
J Leland Atwood: Well, Dutch was very upset when the Navaho was cancelled. I told you about all that. He wasn't as much of a technical man as you might think here. He was very, very strong on his practical things, but I think he felt that the cancellation of the Navaho was something political. I didn't feel that way about it at all. I think it wasn't. In fact, it might have been overdue for cancellation, considering the ballistic missile progress. But he went back to Washington, went around to all the Congressmen he could reach,and Ted Braun went with him, and he protested long and loud around the corridors of everywhere. It didn't do him any good, of course. I think that expedition might have somehow gotten somebody to recommend this Fred Black to him. It's the only explanation I can put on it. I'm not sure of the timing either, but it's about correct. His feeling was that if you made your position strong enough to Congress, and clear enough, you might get some help. That's a very common thought in the world today, and sometimes it works, I guess, and sometimes it doesn't. I read these Congressional hearings with a great deal of interest. People like Deaver and the latest one, Watt, and things like that. I guess the possibilities are there in many many ways. But anyway, that was Fred Black's tenure.
Colonel Trinidad Oliva was also the key CIA contact in the Guatemalan government, working under his half-brother, the defense minister. Trinidad Oliva coordinated all "foreign aid" coming through the CIA conduit ICA, the International Cooperation Administration, the forerunner of the Agency for International Development, AID.
Rosselli and Trinidad then helped the murderous old Gen. Miguel Ydígoras Fuentes, one of Úbico's assassins with close ties to mob partner Trujillo, to become head of state. Mario Sandoval Alarcón. "the father of Latin America's death squads," organized the right-wing of Castillo's party into the National Liberation Movement and hired himself out to Trinidad and Rosselli.
The same year that Johnny Rosselli helped the CIA engineer the change in the Guatemalan government, he was asked by his Syndicate associates to put together Giancana in Chicago, Costello in New York, Lansky in Miami, and Marcello in New Orleans for the huge $50 million Tropicana construction project in Las Vegas. According to Fred Black, a political fixer who was close to Rosselli, Bobby Baker and Lyndon Johnson, Rosselli's influence was such that he gave orders to the Dorfmans, who controlled the Teamsters' huge Central States Pension Fund. During the 50's and 60's, it was Johnny Rosselli who "set up protection" in Las Vegas.
Throughout 1956 and 57 Rosselli travelled back and forth from Mexico City, the planning center for all CIA operations in Latin America, and Guatemala City. An experienced ICA operative noted that "John had access to everyone and everything that was going on there. He had an open door at the embassy in Guatemala, and in Costa Rica. He was in there plenty of times. I know because I saw him. He supplied information to the government, and had a hand in a lot of the intrigues that were going on."
This means, operationally, that Johnny Rosselli's interests became the CIA's interests. "Throughout Latin America," notes Frank McNeil, a junior political officer in the Guatemalan Embassy in 1960, "there were two American governments - one intelligence and one official." McNeil's boss, Ambassador John Muccio, learned of the Bay of Pigs invasion force being trained in Guatemala only after the story broke in The New York Times. As John Kennedy found out to his chagrin, Rosselli, his Syndicate and Batistiano allies, had more operational clout than the State Department.
Fred Black was a superlobbyist who drew a $300,000 salary from North American Aviation. He was paid another $75,000 or so per year by Melpar, Inc., a subsidiary of North American. His other income sources, and I'm not sure what they were, brought him an income of about a half million dollars per year in the late 1950s and early 1960s - and you can imagine what they would translate to in terms of present values. But a half million per year just wasn't enough money for Fred Black. He was a playboy of the first order; if he couldn't go first class, then he wouldn't take the trip.
He kept a hotel suite at the Sheraton-Carlton in Washington where he and his friends - and I was among them-repaired to conduct business, drink, play cards, or entertain ladies. Though we did not then know it, that suite was bugged by the FBI. They must have heard some interesting doings. Black also owned a huge home which shared a backyard fence with Vice-President Lyndon Johnson, after Johnson bought Perle Mesta's house in the exclusive Spring Valley section of Northwest Washington.
Black thought nothing of betting $5,000 on a horse race. He lost thousands at cards to Senator Kerr. What he didn't lose at the racetrack or to Senator Kerr he lost to Las Vegas casinos. He had a quick eye and a grand way with shapely ladies. He loved booze. In short, Fred Black thought little more about tomorrow than did a fattening hog; though he always filed his income tax returns in timely fashion, he rarely had the money to pay his taxes when due.
Senator Kerr and Fred Black originally proposed to go into the vending machine business together. There was big money to be made, Kerr said, by gaining a near monopoly on soft drink, candy, and cigarette machines to be installed at sites where companies were performing defense-related work that depended on government contracts. I've heard that Clark Clifford, the Washington lawyer-lobbyist who's been close to every Democratic administration beginning with Harry Truman's, talked Senator Kerr out of investing in the scheme because it clearly would constitute a conflict of interest on Kerr's part.
Senator Kerr then told Fred Black, "I want to help Bobby Baker. I'll get you the financing if you guys want to go into the vending machine business. There's a fortune to be made." True to his word, Senator Kerr obtained a $400,000 loan for us from the Fidelity National Bank and Trust Company of Oklahoma City, in which he owned stock. We spent the money for vending machines, installing them-among other places-at North American Aviation and at several subsidiary sites. Within a couple of years the Serv-U Corporation we founded-along with my law partner, Ernest Tucker; a Las Vegas hotel-casino man, Eddie Levinson; and a Miami investor and gambler, Benjamin B. Siegelbaum - was grossing $3 million annually. I owned 28.5 percent of the Ser-U Corporation in those days - none now.
A Federal grand jury has returned indictments that portray Austin as the crossroads of a multistate cocaine ring that hid its profits in real and phony businesses, the Austin American-Statesman reported Sunday.
More than $1 million of the money was moved between Austin and a Washington bank in an effort to disguise its source, according to the indictments.
The two indictments returned December 9th in Washington charge 15 people with cocaine importation, bank fraud, mail fraud, and income tax violations and racketeering.
The Indictments said ring profits were invested in "real estate, businesses and other ventures" in Texas, New Jersey, California and Washington, D.C.
According to the indictments, the cocaine scheme began in 1976 but did not spread to Texas until 1978.
The ringleaders are listed as Lawrence G. Strickland Jr., who once lived in Austin and most recently in the Washington area, and Fred B. Black Jr., a Washington resident who was once an associate of Bobby Baker, a protege of President Lyndon B. Johnson.
Strickland's brother-in-law, William G. Hessler, was vice president at the Riggs National Bank branch in the Washington Watergate building. Hessler allowed Black to make deposits there without complying with federal currency laws, the indictments said.
Fred B. Black Jr., an aerospace lobbyist who became ensnared in a political scandal in the early 1960's, died Friday at a nursing home in Wheaton, Md. He was 80 and lived in Bethesda, Md.
He died of heart failure, his family said.
Mr. Black was widely known in Washington as a friend of politicians in his role as a consultant for military contractors in the post-World War II arms and space races.
His downfall stemmed from his secret partnership with Robert G. Baker in the Serv-U Corporation, a vending machine business. Mr. Baker was Secretary of the Senate and a longtime aide to Lyndon B. Johnson.
In 1963 a rival vending company's lawsuit against Serv-U disclosed the Baker-Black partnership. That prompted a Senate investigation into Mr. Baker's dealings with a lobbyist, and both men were also prosecuted on charges of income tax evasion.
In 1964, Mr. Black was convicted of evading $91,000 in taxes and sentenced to up to four years in prison. The conviction was later overturned, and Mr. Black was acquitted in a second trial.
In 1982, he was prosecuted on charges involving a scheme to launder more than $1 million in Colombian cocaine money. He served seven years in prison.
Mr. Black was born in Webb City, Mo., and grew up in nearby Carterville. He went to Washington as an acquaintance of Harry S. Truman, then a Senator from Missouri.
His marriage to the former Nina Lunn ended in divorce. He is survived by a son, Fred 3d, of Annandale, Va., and two daughters, Nina Black of Washington and Nola Murphy of Bethesda.
Baker went to great lengths in his own book to relate his business activities and even his financing to Senator Kerr of Oklahoma, merely mentioning that "additional" investment came from a "hotel-casino" man named Eddie Levinson and a Miami investor and gambler Benjamin B Sigelbaum.
He makes only brief mention that Fred Black had helped him with introductions to Levinson and Sigelbaum.
Baker describes Fred Black as a "super lobbyist" for North American Aviation, among other clients. We are already familiar with Black as a close friend and long time associate of John Roselli. Black's importance to both Baker and Johnson may be further indicated in an April 21 telephone call from President Johnson to Cyrus Vance, a call in which Johnson indicated to Vance that he was especially sensitive to charges of corruption.
He instructed Vance to ensure that the press should find no grounds for charges of bribery in his administration. The call had been prompted by newspaper coverage of the trial of Fred Black in which Black had been charged with taking $150,000 on behalf of the Howard Foundry Company to intervene with the Air Force in a $2.7 million claim against that firm. 360 The Chicago-based Howard Foundry was one of Black's two employers of record, paying him $2,500 per month while North American paid him $14,000 a month.
The above production flaws accentuate the tilt in the book that I noted earlier. Although it's a bit difficult to discern, the conspiracy I see Hancock postulating here is a kind of rogue, loosely knit, willy-nilly operation. A set of Cubans is at the bottom committing the crime (he points toward Felipe Vidal Santiago). The supervisor of this plot is Roselli, who Hancock terms the "strategist". Since Roselli has connections to the CIA, the implication is this is where Phillips and Morales come in. To top the machinations as depicted by Hancock - and in a rather original stroke - he brings in Roselli's friend and super Washington lobbyist Fred Black. He says Black is the guy who saw President Johnson right after he took office and had some blackmail material on him and this is why LBJ went along with the cover-up.
Where does this information appear to come from? Newly declassified ARRB files perhaps? Nope. It's from another rather questionable book that the author uses. This is Wheeling and Dealing, by the infamous Bobby Baker. Now again, to go into all the problems with using a book like this and with someone like Baker would take a separate essay in itself. Suffice it to say, Baker had such a low reputation and was involved with so many unsavory characters and activities that RFK pressed then Vice-President Johnson to get rid of him before the 1964 election. The Attorney General was worried some of these activities would explode into the press and endanger the campaign. Liking the protection his position with Johnson gave him, Baker resisted. He then fought back. One of the ways he fought back was by planting rumors about President Kennedy and a woman named Ellen Rometsch. The resultant hubbub, with daggers and accusations flying about, is the kind of thing that authors like Seymour Hersh and Burton Hersh make hay of in their trashy books. (I didn't think it was possible, but Burton Hersh's book Bobby and J. Edgar is even more awful than The Dark Side of Camelot. It is such an atrocity, I couldn't even finish it.) Suffice it to say, Baker was forced out in October of 1963. Researcher Peter Vea has seen the original FBI reports commissioned by Hoover about Rometsch and he says there is nothing of substance in them about her and JFK. I am a bit surprised that Hancock would try and pin the JFK cover-up on information furnished by the likes of Baker and Black.
This is all the more surprising since the author includes material from John Newman's latest discoveries about Oswald, James Angleton, the CIA and Mexico City. To me this new ARRB released evidence provides a much more demonstrable and credible thesis as to just how and why Johnson decided to actively involve himself in the cover-up.
To make his Black/Baker theorem tenable on the page, Hancock leaves out or severely curtails some rather important and compelling evidence. In 1996, Probe published a milestone article by Professor Donald Gibson entitled "The Creation of the Warren Commission" (Vol. 3 No. 4 p. 8). It was, and still is, the definitive account of how the Warren Commission came into being. And it was used and sourced by Gerald McKnight in the best study of the Warren Commission we have to date, Breach of Trust, published in 2005. According to this evidence declassified by the ARRB, there were three men involved in pushing the concept of the Warren Commission onto the Johnson White House. They were Eugene Rostow, Dean Acheson, and Joseph Alsop. (There is a fourth person who Rostow alluded to but didn't name in his call to Bill Moyers on 11/24. Ibid p. 27) This trio sprung into action right after Oswald was shot by Ruby. And they began to instantly lobby Moyers, Walter Jenkins, Nick Katzenbach, and President Johnson to create what eventually became the Warren Commission. To say that Hancock gives short shrift to Gibson's seminal account is a huge understatement. He radically truncates the absolutely crucial and stunning phone call between LBJ and Alsop of 11/25. One has to read this transcript to understand just how important it is and just how intent and forceful Alsop is in getting Johnson to do what he wants him to. (The Assassinations pgs. 10-15.) By almost eviscerating it, Hancock leaves the impression that it is actually Johnson who was pushing for the creation of a blue ribbon national committee and not Alsop! (Hancock pgs 327-328) I don't see how any objective person can read the longer excerpts and come to that conclusion. So when Hancock states (p. 322) categorically that "President Johnson was the driving force in determining and controlling exactly how the murder of President Kennedy was investigated," I am utterly baffled at how and why he can write this. The sterling work of both Gibson and McKnight show that this is a wild and irresponsible exaggeration.
The above production flaws accentuate the tilt in the book that I noted earlier. To top the machinations as depicted by Hancock -- and in a rather original stroke -- he brings in Roselli's friend and super Washington lobbyist Fred Black. The sterling work of both Gibson and McKnight show that this is a wild and irresponsible exaggeration.
Fredrick Allen Hampton (August 30, 1948 – December 4, 1969) was an American activist, Marxist–Leninist and revolutionary socialist.   He came to prominence in Chicago as chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party (BPP), and deputy chairman of the national BPP. In this capacity, he founded the antiracist, anticlass Rainbow Coalition,  a prominent multicultural political organization that initially included the Black Panthers, Young Patriots (which organized poor whites), and the Young Lords (which organized Hispanics), and an alliance among major Chicago street gangs to help them end infighting and work for social change. Hampton considered fascism the greatest threat, saying, "Nothing is more important than stopping fascism, because fascism will stop us all.” 
In 1967, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) identified Hampton as a radical threat. It tried to subvert his activities in Chicago, sowing disinformation among black progressive groups and placing a counterintelligence operative in the local Panthers. In December 1969, Hampton was drugged,   shot and killed in his bed during a predawn raid at his Chicago apartment by a tactical unit of the Cook County State's Attorney's Office in conjunction with the Chicago Police Department and the FBI. At least 82 shells of varying caliber were fired by police weapons, while only one shell was confirmed to have been fired by the occupants.  During the raid, Panther Mark Clark was also killed and several others were seriously wounded. In January 1970, the Cook County Coroner held an inquest the jury concluded that Hampton's and Clark's deaths were justifiable homicides.    
A civil lawsuit was later filed on behalf of the survivors and the relatives of Hampton and Clark. It was resolved in 1982 by a settlement of $1.85 million the City of Chicago, Cook County, and the federal government each paid one-third to a group of nine plaintiffs. Given revelations about the illegal COINTELPRO program and documents associated with the killings, many scholars now consider Hampton's death an assassination at the FBI's initiative.     
Fred Hampton was born on August 30, 1948 in Summit, Illinois. His parents, Francis Allen Hampton and Iberia Hampton, were Louisiana natives who relocated to Chicago. As a youth, Fred excelled in sports and dreamed of playing baseball for the New York Yankees. However, he also excelled in the classroom. Hampton ultimately attended Triton College, where he studied pre-law in hopes of helping people of color fight back against police brutality. As a teen, Hampton became involved in civil rights by leading a local NAACP youth council. He helped to grow the council's membership to more than 500 members.
Fred McKinley Jones is certainly one of the most important Black inventors ever based on the sheer number of inventions he formulated as well as their diversity.
Fred Jones was born on May 17, 1893 in Covington, Kentucky. His father was a white railroad worker of Irish descent and his mother was Black. It is believed that his mother died while he was young and Fred was raised by his father. When Fred was eight years old, his father took him to Cincinnati, Ohio to where they visited St. Mary’s Catholic Church rectory. Fred’s father urged Father Edward A. Ryan to take Fred in in order to expose him to an environment where he might have a better opportunity for gaining an education. Fred performed chores around the church in return for being fed and housed, cutting the grass, shoveling snow, scrubbing floors and learning to cook. At an early age, Fred demonstrated a great interest in mechanical working, whether taking apart a toy, a watch or a kitchen appliance. Eventually he became interested in automobiles, so much so that upon turning 12 years of age, he ran away from his home at the rectory and began working at the R.C. Crothers Garage.
Initially hired to sweep and clean the garage, Fred spent much of his time observing the mechanics as they worked on cars. His observation, along with a voracious appetite for learning through reading developed within Fred an incredible base of knowledge about automobiles and their inner workings. Within three years, Fred had become the foreman of the garage. The garage was primarily designed to repair automobiles brought in by customers but also served as a studio for building racing cars. After a few years of building these cars, Fred desired to drive them and soon became one of the most well known racers in the Great Lakes region. After brief stints working aboard a steamship and a hotel, Jones moved to Hallock, Minnesota began designing and building racecars which he drove them at local tracks and at county fairs. His favorite car was known as Number 15 and it was so well designed it not only defeated other automobile but once triumphed in a race against an airplane.
On August 1, 1918 Jones enlisted in the 809 Pioneer Infantry of the United States Army and served in France during World War I. While serving, Jones recruited German prisoners of war and rewired his camp for electricity, telephone and telegraph service. After being discharged by the Army, Fred returned to Hallock in 1919. Looking for work, Jones often aided local doctors by driving them around for housecalls during the winter season. When navigation through the snow proved difficult, Fred attached skis to the undercarriage of an old airplane body and attached an airplane propeller to a motor and soon whisked around town a high speeds in his new snowmachine. Over the next few years Fred began tinkering with almost everything he could find, inventing things he could not find and improving upon those he could. When one of the doctors he worked for on occasion complained that he wished he did not have to wait for patient to come into his office for x-ray exams, Jones created a portable x-ray machine that could be taken to the patient. Unfortunately, like many of his early inventions, Jones never thought to apply for a patent for machine and watched helplessly as other men made fortunes off of their versions of the device. Undaunted, Jones set out for other projects, including a radio transmitter, personal radio sets and eventually motion picture devices.
In 1927, Jones was faced with the problem of helping friend convert their silent movie theater into a “talkie” theater. Not only did he convert scrap metal into the parts necessary to deliver a soundtrack to the video, he also devised ways to stabilize and improve the picture quality. When Joe Numero, the head of Ultraphone Sound Systems heard about Fred’s devices, he invited Fred to come to Minneapolis for a job interview. After taking a position with the company, Fred began improving on many of the existing devices the company sold. Many of his improvements were so significant, representatives from A.T. & T and RCA sat down to talk with Fred and were amazed at the depth of his knowledge on intricate details, particularly in light of his limited educational background. Around this time, Fred came up with a new idea – an automatic ticket-dispensing machine to be used at movie theaters. Fred applied for and received a patent for this device in June of 1939 and the patent rights were eventually sold to RCA.
At some point, Joe Numero was presented with the task of developing a device which would allow large trucks to transport perishable products without them spoiling. Jones set to work and developed a cooling process that could refrigerate the interior of the tractor-trailer. In 1939 Fred and Joe Numero received a patent for the vehicle air-conditioning device which would later be called a Thermo King.
This product revolutionized several industries including shipping and grocery businesses. Grocery chains were now able to import and export products which previously could only have been shipped as canned goods. Thus, the frozen food industry was created and the world saw the emergence of the “supermarket.”
In addition to installing the Thermo King refrigeration units in trucks and tractor-trailers, Jones modified the original design so they could be outfitted for trains, boats and ships.
During World War II, the Department of Defense found a great need portable refrigeration units for distributing food and blood plasma to troops in the field. The Department called upon Thermo King for a solution. Fred modified his device and soon had developed a prototype which would eventually allow airplanes to parachute these units down behind enemy lines to the waiting troops.
For the next 20 years, Fred Jones continued make improvements on existing devices and devised new inventions when necessary to aid the public. Jones died on February 21, 1961 and was posthumously awarded the National Medal of Technology, one of the greatest honors an inventor could receive. Jones was the first Black inventor to ever receive such an honor.
Pauline A. Young
Pauline Young was an African-American teacher, librarian, historian, lecturer, community activist, humanitarian. She was a devoted lifelong member of her local and the national chapter of the NAACP. Born in Massachusetts, Young grew up near an underground railroad point before moving to Delaware. Young joined the NAACP at the age of 12, and she served nine years as the secretary. Later, she became the president of the Wilmington, Delaware branch.
Young was honored by the Wilmington Branch of the National Association of University Women, she was recognized for outstanding service to the Home, the Community, the State, and the Nation and was hereby inducted to the Hall of Fame of Delaware women. Young received a Certificate of Honorary Membership from Delaware State College’s Black Studies Program. The University of Delaware Library renamed the residency program in honor of Young.
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Judas and the Black Messiah (2021)
The Judas and the Black Messiah true story confirms that at the time of Fred Hampton's death, he was the chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party, which by definition made him a deputy chairman of the national Black Panther Party.
What does the movie's title mean?
How did Fred Hampton become a leader in the Black Panther Party?
Hampton had excelled in school, graduating from Proviso East High School in Maywood, Illinois with academic honors, a Junior Achievement Award, and three varsity letters. He then attended Triton Junior College, majoring in pre-law in order to better understand the legal system and his rights when confronted by the police. Hampton became involved with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and became one of the organization's youth organizers, assembling a youth group that had 500 members. He fought for better neighborhood recreational facilities and that the impoverished black community of Maywood be provided with improved access to educational resources.
Was Fred Hampton a socialist?
Yes. A Judas and the Black Messiah fact-check confirms that Hampton was indeed a socialist. In one of his most well-known statements, he says that the solution to capitalism isn't black capitalism, it's socialism. The movie champions this position, and its director, Shaka King, has said he believes that Hampton and the Panthers were on the right track.
Did Fred Hampton unite Chicago street gangs by encouraging them to fight for social change instead of each other?
Yes. The Judas and the Black Messiah true story reveals that as a member of the Black Panther Party, Fred Hampton brokered a non-aggression pact between the gangs. He stressed that infighting would only keep them stuck in the same cycle of oppression. He formed a multicultural alliance called the Rainbow Coalition, which included gangs like the Young Lords (Puerto Ricans) and political groups like the Young Patriots (Southern white leftists). He also organized rallies, taught political education classes, was pivotal in establishing the BBP's Free Breakfast Program, and developed an initiative that empowered communities to monitor the police for instances of brutality.
Is Dominique Thorne's character, Judy Harmon, based on a real person?
No. In researching the Judas and the Black Messiah fact vs. fiction, we learned that Judy Harmon was created for the film to help showcase the integral part that women played in the Black Panther Party. In the movie, Harmon is a key figure in Hampton's security detail.
What dirt did the FBI have on William O'Neal to convince him to become an informant?
Similar to what is seen in the movie, William O'Neal had been arrested for impersonating a federal officer and he had been arrested for interstate car theft twice. The movie embellishes the real-life events a bit by having O'Neal use his fake FBI badge to steal a car from a customer at a bar. In real life, O'Neal was pulled over in a stolen car and told the officer he was with the FBI, presenting the phony identification to the officer. The FBI promised him that if he became an informant and infiltrated the Black Panther Party in Chicago, his felony charges would be dropped. He would also receive a monthly stipend.
Are the ages of Fred Hampton and William O'Neal represented accurately in the movie?
No. In real life, both Hampton and O'Neal were significantly younger. William O'Neal was only 17 when he became an informant for the FBI, and Fred Hampton was 21 at the time of his death. Actors LaKeith Stanfield and Daniel Kaluuya are 29 and 31, respectively.
Did William O'Neal become Fred Hampton's bodyguard?
Yes. The FBI's informant, William O'Neal, joined the Black Panthers in November 1968 and became the local chief of security. He also acted as Fred Hampton's bodyguard. It's true that he supplied the FBI with information about Fred Hampton's apartment (pictured below) prior to the raid.
Did informant William O'Neal try to sabotage Fred Hampton's mission of uniting Chicago's gangs and incorporating them into the movement?
Is FBI agent Roy Mitchell based on a real person?
Yes. Jesse Plemons' character, FBI agent Roy Mitchell, is based on a real person. Mitchell had a 25-year career with the FBI and was employed until his death at age 66 in 2000. He worked on a number of high-profile cases, including the murder of three civil rights workers, which became the basis for the movie Mississippi Burning. He was instrumental in solving the River Killings and later played a pivotal role in the Hit Squad case, which led to the conviction of police Sergeant Stanley Robinson, who had been arrested for assassinating drug dealers in the early 1970s. Mitchell's most famous case was that which is focused on in the Judas and the Black Messiah movie, which found him recruiting and grooming informant William O'Neal to infiltrate the Black Panther Party in Chicago. In real life, Mitchell had as many as nine informants connected to the BPP, but O'Neal was the most significant.
Is Roy Mitchell's relationship with his informant, William O'Neal, portrayed accurately?
No. Screenwriters Kenny and Keith Lucas responded to the question by saying, "We didn&rsquot know the nature of William O'Neal's relationship with Roy Mitchell. We got the transcript from [the 1990 PBS civil rights docuseries] Eyes on the Prize II, but you can't really trust what William O'Neal was saying. We took what he said, and made some assumptions based on other research that we've done, about the relationship between informants and their handlers." -Decider.com
The scene where William O'Neal spends time at Roy Mitchell's home is based on a comment O'Neal made about visiting Mitchell's place. However, the dialogue that unfolds there is fictional. The real O'Neal never revealed what had been discussed.
Did the Black Panther Party believe in violence?
The Black Panthers were known for being a militant political organization. They believed that due to the fact that the police had guns, they would never truly be liberated from the chains of the oppressor. They believed that arming themselves, primarily for self-defense, was the only way to guarantee true liberation. As a result, members of the Black Panther Party engaged in many fatal shootouts with police. Prominent members like Bobby Seale outright called for using violence against the police when confronted. They believed that Martin Luther King Jr.'s death was proof that advancing civil rights through nonviolence doesn't work.
Judas and the Black Messiah's director, Shaka King, wanted to emphasize that the Black Panthers were much more than a Marxist revolutionary group that dressed in black uniforms. As seen with Fred Hampton in the film, they were individuals who loved, had children, were community organizers, and possessed valuable political ideas. They were far more complex than the stereotypes often associated with them. This was demonstrated by their Free Breakfast for Children Program, the community health clinics they established, and their multicultural movement that became known as the Rainbow Coalition. However, the FBI believed that the Free Breakfast for Children Program was created to indoctrinate kids into the movement (as seen in the movie, this appears to have been true to some degree). They saw the Rainbow Coalition as a united militia that could lead to an insurrection.
Were tensions high between Chicago police and the Black Panthers prior to the raid?
Yes. During our examination of the Judas and the Black Messiah true story, we learned that there had been two shooting incidents between Chicago police and the Panthers at the BPP headquarters, occurring in July and October 1969. Then on November 13, 1969, just three weeks before the raid, two Chicago police officers, John J. Gilhooly and Frank G. Rappaport, were killed in an ambush-shootout with the Panthers. 19-year-old Spurgeon "Jake" Winters, who had close ties to the Panthers, also lost his life. Seven other officers were wounded in the shootout. Winters is portrayed by Algee Smith in the movie and is depicted as acting alone. However, in real life, Panther Lawrence "Lance" Bell reportedly also took part in the shootout and was wounded.
Why did authorities raid Fred Hampton's apartment?
As Fred Hampton rose to prominence in the Black Panther Party, he became a target of the FBI, which was determined to prevent a Messiah-like figure from emerging and starting a revolution that could threaten the government and society. The FBI raided Hampton's apartment in an effort to target him under the guise of seizing weapons that they believed the Black Panthers were storing there. This was based on information they received from FBI informant William O'Neal and FBI Special Agent Roy Mitchell. O'Neal also gave them the layout of the apartment (pictured below). Fred Hampton's death during the raid led many to believe that it was a coordinated assassination on the part of the FBI and Chicago Police Department. However, the conversation in the movie where O'Neal directly asks Agent Mitchell if the FBI is going to kill Fred Hampton, to which Agent Mitchell doesn't respond, is entirely fictional.
Was J. Edgar Hoover aware of the raid?
Yes. However, while exploring the Judas and the Black Messiah fact vs. fiction, we discovered that screenwriters Kenny and Keith Lucas didn't know this when they were writing the film. Instead, they fictionalized Hoover's involvement in the raid. In February 2021, the month of the movie's release on HBO Max, several hundred pages of FBI memos and reports were discovered by historian Aaron Leonard that reveal the involvement of senior FBI officials in the planning of the raid. The documents suggest that J. Edgar Hoover was monitoring what was unfolding. Hoover commended FBI Agent Roy Mitchell for his handling of informant William O'Neal and even approved an incentive award for Mitchell.
Did J. Edgar Hoover ask FBI Agent Roy Mitchell how he would feel if his daughter brought home a black man?
No. At the time they were writing the film, the screenwriters weren't even aware that the head of the FBI, J. Edgar Hoover, had been monitoring the planning and execution of the raid, a detail that was discovered later. The movie's conversations between Hoover and Agent Mitchell are entirely fictional. There's no evidence that Hoover ever asked Agent Mitchell how he would feel if his daughter, who was then very young, brought home a black man someday.
Did William O'Neal drug Fred Hampton prior to the raid?
Our Judas and the Black Messiah fact-check confirms that this is likely true since barbiturates were found in Hampton's system after his death. However, O'Neal later denied drugging Hampton. O'Neal had prepared a late dinner for the group who gathered at Hampton's apartment. It is believed that it was then that he slipped secobarbitol, a barbiturate sleep agent, into a drink that Hampton had with dinner. Hampton passed out in the middle of talking to his mother on the phone.
How many Black Panthers died during the raid?
Like in the Judas and the Black Messiah movie, the true story confirms that two Black Panthers died when the Cook County State's Attorney's Office's tactical unit, working with the Chicago Police Department and the FBI, raided Fred Hampton's four-and-a-half-room Chicago apartment at 2337 West Monroe Street on December 4, 1969. In addition to Fred Hampton's death, Black Panther Mark Clark was also shot and killed. Four others in the apartment were injured, including Blair Anderson, Brenda Harris, Ronald Satchel, and Verlina Brewer. Satchel was hit four times, Brewer and Anderson twice, and Harris once. Three other uninjured survivors were arrested and taken to Cook County Jail.
Was Fred Hampton assassinated?
Whether or not Fred Hampton was assassinated was a subject of controversy in the decades that followed the raid. In the aftermath of Fred Hampton's death, the police described the raid on his apartment as a "shootout," claiming that their use of deadly force was justified. The Panthers on the other hand claimed that the police fired almost all the shots, pointing out that the bullet holes seen in a photo supplied by the state's attorney's office were in fact nail heads and not holes created from Panthers shooting in the direction of the police, as had been alleged. A later investigation found that the police had fired approximately 90-99 shots, while the Panthers fired only once. Chicago's major newspapers took opposing sides, with the Chicago Tribune echoing the perspective of the police, while the Chicago Sun-Times presented the Panthers' account.
The most compelling evidence to suggest that Hampton had been assassinated was the fact that after he was initially wounded, he was shot twice in the head. There seems to be no evidence to suggest that he was a threat at this point, especially since he had been lying in his bed unconscious when the raid began, after having been allegedly drugged earlier that night by FBI informant William O'Neal. The scene of Fred Hampton's death is pictured below.
Is it true that the Black Panthers only fired once as a convulsionary reaction after being shot?
While the police claimed they were fired at multiple times, subsequent ballistics research challenged that assertion, revealing only a single shot was likely fired by the Panthers. Mark Clark was on security duty and was sitting in the front room of the apartment with a shotgun in his lap. As police entered, Clark was fatally shot in the chest. After being hit, his gun reportedly went off during a convulsionary reaction, sending a round into the ceiling. The office of Cook County State's Attorney Edward Hanrahan released photos which they claimed showed bullet holes that proved the Black Panthers were firing at the police. However, the Chicago Sun-Times published photographs that showed that the supposed bullet holes were actually nail heads.
Were weapons found in Fred Hampton's apartment?
Yes. Weapons and ammo were allegedly recovered from the apartment, including 14 shotguns and revolvers, and about 1,000 rounds of ammunition. The collection of these weapons was called into question since they were reportedly removed and taken to the State's Attorney's Office before they were fingerprinted and tagged. Two of the weapons recovered, a stolen police riot gun and a sawed-off shotgun, were federally illegal. The FBI knew about these two weapons beforehand but never reported them to the Treasury Department's Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Division, which may have then taken over the case.
Did a coroner's inquest into the deaths of Fred Hampton and Mark Clark determine that they were justifiable homicide?
A coroner's inquest that took place in January 1970 ruled the deaths of Fred Hampton and Mark Clark to be justifiable homicide. However, the jury based the verdict solely on the information presented at the inquest, and the only testimony heard was from police and expert witnesses. The seven surviving Panthers chose not to testify because they were facing attempted murder and aggravated assault charges. Therefore, to some degree, the jury only heard one side of the argument.
Did the survivors and relatives of Fred Hampton and Mark Clark win a civil lawsuit?
Yes. It was argued that Fred Hampton was killed without provocation or justification and that the raid was a violation of the Panthers' constitutional rights against unreasonable search and seizure. A settlement was finally awarded in 1983 from the 1970 civil lawsuit, which resulted in the federal government, the city of Chicago, and Cook County each paying a third of the $1.85 million given to the relatives of the deceased, Fred Hampton and Mark Clark, as well as the seven survivors. However, it was a far cry from the $47.7 million in damages that they were originally seeking.
What happened to informant William O'Neal?
The FBI's informant, William O'Neal, entered into the federal witness protection program in 1973 after his cover was blown. He used the alias William Hart and relocated to California. He secretly came back to Chicago in 1984. O'Neal's uncle, Ben Heard, says that he was forever racked with guilt over his role in Fred Hampton and Mark Clark's deaths.
On January 16, 1990, after acting erratic in the early hours of the morning, O'Neal bolted out of his uncle's apartment and ran onto the Eisenhower Expressway. He was hit by a car and killed. It was the second time he had tried to take his life by running onto the expressway. The previous September he had entered into a similar rage, ran onto the Eisenhower, was struck by a vehicle and injured. -Chicago Reader
Fred Shuttlesworth (1922-2011)
Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth was born on March 18, 1922 in Mount Meigs, Alabama to Vetta Green and Alberta Robinson. However, his mother and stepfather, William Nathan Shuttlesworth, a farmer in Oxmore, Alabama raised Fred Shuttlesworth. Shuttlesworth attended Oxmore Elementary School. He graduated from Rosedale High School in 1940 and the following year he married Ruby Keeler, a nurse. In 1943 he became a truck driver and studied mechanics in Mobile. While in Mobile, Shuttlesworth also attended seminary at Cedar Grove Academy. In 1945, he delivered his first sermon. He pursued an A.B. degree at Selma University and Alabama State College. In 1950, Shuttlesworth became pastor of First Baptist Church in Selma, and in 1953, he returned to Birmingham as pastor of Bethel Baptist Church.
In Birmingham Shuttlesworth became a leading civil rights figure, challenging segregation in the school system and Jim Crow policies in public accommodations. In May of 1956 Reverend Shuttlesworth formed the civil rights organization Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights. That same year he became a participant in the Montgomery Improvement Association’s Montgomery Bus Boycott. Shuttlesworth’s role in the boycott angered members of the Ku Klux Klan who dynamited his house.
Following the destruction of his home, Shuttlesworth continued to civil rights crusade. In 1957 police brutally beat and hospitalized him for attempting to enroll his daughter in an all white school. In the late 1950s Shuttlesworth continued as a leader in the black freedom struggle by co-founding the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957 with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Bayard Rustin.
Shuttlesworth activism intensified in the early 1960s. He joined younger activists in sit-ins to desegregated lunch counters and he assisted the Congress of Racial Equality in organizing freedom rides throughout the South.
Shuttlesworth continued to challenge Jim Crow in Birmingham. In 1963 he participated in a civil rights campaign in that city’s Kelley Ingram Park.At one such protest Sheriff Eugene “Bull” Conner ordered the fire department to turn water cannons on Shuttlesworth and the other protester. The reverend was seriously injured and hospitalized.
In 1966 Shuttlesworth left Alabama, becoming pastor of Great New Light Baptist Church in Cincinnati Ohio. In the North, he continued his activism by founding in 1988 the Shuttlesworth Housing Foundation, an organization that assisted low income families in purchasing homes. For Shuttlesworth years of activism, Birmingham’s International Airport was renamed in his honor as the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport in 2008.
Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth returned to Birmingham where he died on October 5, 2011. He was 89.
Fred Black - History
POWER ANYWHERE WHERE THERES PEOPLE!
Power anywhere where there's people. Power anywhere where there's people. Let me give you an example of teaching people. Basically, the way they learn is observation and participation. You know a lot of us go around and joke ourselves and believe that the masses have PhDs, but that's not true. And even if they did, it wouldn't make any difference. Because with some things, you have to learn by seeing it or either participating in it. And you know yourselves that there are people walking around your community today that have all types of degrees that should be at this meeting but are not here. Right? Because you can have as many degrees as a thermometer. If you don't have any practice, they you can't walk across the street and chew gum at the same time.
Let me tell you how Huey P. Newton, the leader, the organizer, the founder, the main man of the Black Panther Party, went about it.
The community had a problem out there in California. There was an intersection, a four-way intersection a lot of people were getting killed, cars running over them, and so the people went down and redressed their grievances to the government. You've done it before. I know you people in the community have. And they came back and the pigs said "No! You can't have any." Oh, they dont usually say you can't have it. They've gotten a little hipper than that now. That's what those degrees on the thermometer will get you. They tell you "Okay, we'll deal with it. Why dont you come back next meeting and waste some time?"
And they get you wound up in an excursion of futility, and you be in a cycle of insaneness, and you be goin' back and goin' back, and goin' back, and goin' back so many times that you're already crazy.
So they tell you, they say, "Okay niggers, what you want?" And they you jump up and you say, "Well, it's been so long, we don't know what we want", and then you walk out of the meeting and you're gone and they say, "Well, you niggers had your chance, didnt you?"
Let me tell you what Huey P. Newton did.
Huey Newton went and got Bobby Seale, the chairman of the Black Panther Party on a national level. Bobby Seale got his 9mm, that's a pistol. Huey P. Newton got his shotgun and got some stop signs and got a hammer. Went down to the intersection, gave his shotgun to Bobby, and Bobby had his 9mm. He said, "You hold this shotgun. Anybody mess with us, blow their brains out." He put those stop signs up.
There were no more accidents, no more problem.
Now they had another situation. That's not that good, you see, because its two people dealing with a problem. Huey Newton and Bobby Seale, no matter how bad they may be, cannot deal with the problem. But let me explain to you who the real heroes are.
Next time, there was a similar situation, another four-way corner. Huey went and got Bobby, went and got his 9mm, got his shotgun, got his hammer and got more stop signs. Placed those stop signs up, gave the shotgun to Bobby, told Bobby "If anybody mess with us while were putting these stop signs up, protect the people and blow their brains out." What did the people do? They observed it again. They participated in it. Next time they had another four-way intersection. Problems there they had accidents and death. This time, the people in the community went and got their shotguns, got their hammers, got their stop signs.
Now, let me show you how were gonna try to do it in the Black Panther Party here. We just got back from the south side. We went out there. We went out there and we got to arguing with the pigs or the pigs got to arguing-he said, "Well, Chairman Fred, you supposed to be so bad, why dont you go and shoot some of those policemen? You always talking about you got your guns and got this, why dont you go shoot some of them?"
And I've said, "you've just broken a rule. As a matter of fact, even though you have on a uniform it doesn't make me any difference. Because I dont care if you got on nine uniforms, and 100 badges. When you step outside the realm of legality and into the realm of illegality, then I feel that you should be arrested." And I told him, "You being what they call the law of entrapment, you tried to make me do something that was wrong, you encouraged me, you tried to incite me to shoot a pig. And that ain't cool, Brother, you know the law, dont you?"
I told that pig that, I told him "You got a gun, pig?" I told him, "You gotta get your hands up against the wall. We're gonna do what they call a citizens arrest." This fool dont know what this is. I said, "Now you be just as calm as you can and don't make too many quick moves, cause we don't wanna have to hit you."
And I told him like he always told us, I told him, "Well, I'm here to protect you. Don't worry about a thing, 'm here for your benefit." So I sent another Brother to call the pigs. You gotta do that in a citizen's arrest. He called the pigs. Here come the pigs with carbines and shotguns, walkin' out there. They came out there talking about how they're gonna arrest Chairman Fred. And I said, "No fool. This is the man you got to arrest. He's the one that broke the law." And what did they do? They bugged their eyes, and they couldn't stand it. You know what they did? They were so mad, they were so angry that they told me to leave.
And what happened? All those people were out there on 63rd Street. What did they do? They were around there laughing and talking with me while I was making the arrest. They looked at me while I was rapping and heard me while I was rapping. So the next time that the pig comes on 63rd Street, because of the thing that our Minister of Defense calls observation and participation, that pig might be arrested by anybody!
So what did we do? We were out there educating the people. How did we educate them? Basically, the way people learn, by observation and participation. And that's what were trying to do. That's what we got to do here in this community. And a lot of people don't understand, but there's three basic things that you got to do anytime you intend to have yourself a successful revolution.
A lot of people get the word revolution mixed up and they think revolutions a bad word. Revolution is nothing but like having a sore on your body and then you put something on that sore to cure that infection. And Im telling you that were living in an infectious society right now. Im telling you that were living in a sick society. And anybody that endorses integrating into this sick society before its cleaned up is a man whos committing a crime against the people.
If you walk past a hospital room and see a sign that says "Contaminated" and then you try to lead people into that room, either those people are mighty dumb, you understand me, cause if they weren't, they'd tell you that you are an unfair, unjust leader that does not have your followers' interests in mind. And what were saying is simply that leaders have got to become, we've got to start making them accountable for what they do. They're goin' around talking about so-and-so's an Uncle Tom so we're gonna open up a cultural center and teach him what blackness is. And this n****r is more aware than you and me and Malcolm and Martin Luther King and everybody else put together. That's right. They're the ones that are most aware. They're most aware, cause they're the ones that are gonna open up the center. They're gonna tell you where bones come from in Africa that you can't even pronounce the names. Thats right. They'll be telling you about Chaka, the leader of the Bantu freedom fighters, and Jomo Kenyatta, those dingo-dingas. They'll be running all of that down to you. They know about it all. But the point is they do what they're doing because it is beneficial and it is profitable for them.
You see, people get involved in a lot of things that's profitable to them, and we've got to make it less profitable. We've got to make it less beneficial. I'm saying that any program that's brought into our community should be analyzed by the people of that community. It should be analyzed to see that it meets the relevant needs of that community. We don't need no n*****s coming into our community to be having no company to open business for the n*****s. There's too many n*****s in our community that can't get crackers out of the business that they're gonna open.
We got to face some facts. That the masses are poor, that the masses belong to what you call the lower class, and when I talk about the masses, I'm talking about the white masses, I'm talking about the black masses, and the brown masses, and the yellow masses, too. We've got to face the fact that some people say you fight fire best with fire, but we say you put fire out best with water. We say you don't fight racism with racism. We're gonna fight racism with solidarity. We say you don't fight capitalism with no black capitalism you fight capitalism with socialism.
We ain't gonna fight no reactionary pigs who run up and down the street being reactionary we're gonna organize and dedicate ourselves to revolutionary political power and teach ourselves the specific needs of resisting the power structure, arm ourselves, and we're gonna fight reactionary pigs with INTERNATIONAL PROLETARIAN REVOLUTION. That's what it has to be. The people have to have the power: it belongs to the people.
We have to understand very clearly that there's a man in our community called a capitalist. Sometimes he's black and sometimes he's white. But that man has to be driven out of our community, because anybody who comes into the community to make profit off the people by exploiting them can be defined as a capitalist. And we don't care how many programs they have, how long a dashiki they have. Because political power does not flow from the sleeve of a dashiki political power flows from the barrel of a gun. It flows from the barrel of a gun!
A lot of us running around talking about politics don't even know what politics is. Did you ever see something and pull it and you take it as far as you can and it almost outstretches itself and it goes into something else? If you take it so far that it is two things? As a matter of fact, some things if you stretch it so far, it'll be another thing. Did you ever cook something so long that it turns into something else? Ain't that right?
That's what were talking about with politics.
That politics ain't nothing, but if you stretch it so long that it can't go no further, then you know what you got on your hands? You got an antagonistic contradiction. And when you take that contradiction to the highest level and stretch it as far as you can stretch it, you got what you call war. Politics is war without bloodshed, and war is politics with bloodshed. If you don't understand that, you can be a Democrat, Republican, you can be Independent, you can be anything you want to, you ain't nothing.
We don't want any of those n*****s and any of these hunkies and nobody else, radicals or nobody talking about, "I'm on the Independence ticket." That means you sell out the republicans Independent means you're out for graft and you'll sell out to the highest bidder. You understand?
We want people who want to run on the People's Party, because the people are gonna run it whether they like it or not. The people have proved that they can run it. They run it in China, they're gonna run it right here. They can call it what they want to, they can talk about it. They can call it communism, and think that that's gonna scare somebody, but it ain't gonna scare nobody.
We had the same thing happen out on 37th Road. They came out to 37th road where our Breakfast for children program is, and started getting those women who were kind of older, around 58---that's, you know, I call that older cause Im young. I aint 20, right, right! But you see, they're gonna get them and brainwash them. And you ain't seen nothin till you see one of them beautiful Sisters with their hair kinda startin getting grey, and they ain't got many teeth, and they were tearin' them policemen up! They were tearing em up! The pigs would come up to them and say "You like communism?"
The pigs would come up to them and say, "You scared of communism?" And the Sisters would say, "No scared of it, I ain't never heard of it."
"No scared of it. I ain't never heard of it."
The pigs, they be crackin' up, because they enjoyed seeing these people frightened of these words.
Yeah, well, that's what I live with. I like it.
"You like the Breakfast For Children program, n****r?"
And the pigs say, "Oh-oh." The pigs say, "Well, the Breakfast For Children program is a socialistic program. Its a communistic program."
And the women said, "Well, I tell you what, boy. I've been knowing you since you were knee-high to a grasshopper, n****r. And I don't know if I like communism and I don't know if I like socialism. But I know that that Breakfast For Children program feeds my kids, n****r. And if you put your hands on that Breakfast For Children program, I'm gonna come off this can and I'm gonna beat your ass like a . "
That's what they be saying. That's what they be saying, and it is a beautiful thing. And that's what the Breakfast For Children program is. A lot of people think it is charity, but what does it do? It takes the people from a stage to another stage. Any program that's revolutionary is an advancing program. Revolution is change. Honey, if you just keep on changing, before you know it, in fact, not even knowing what socialism is, you dont have to know what it is, they're endorsing it, they're participating in it, and they're supporting socialism.
And a lot of people will tell you, way, Well, the people dont have any theory, they need some theory. They need some theory even if they don't have any practice. And the Black Panther Party tells you that if a man tells you that he's the type of man who has you buying candy bars and eating the wrapping and throwing the candy away, he'd have you walking East when you're supposed to be walking West. Its true. If you listen to what the pig says, you be walkin' outside when the sun is shining with your umbrella over your head. And when it's raining youll be goin' outside leaving your umbrella inside. That's right. You gotta get it together. Im saying that's what they have you doing.
Now, what do WE do? We say that the Breakfast For Children program is a socialistic program. It teaches the people basically that by practice, we thought up and let them practice that theory and inspect that theory. What's more important? You learn something just like everybody else.
Let me try to break it down to you.
You say this Brother here goes to school 8 years to be an auto mechanic. And that teacher who used to be an auto mechanic, he tells him, "Well, n****r, you gotta go on what we call on-the-job-training." And he says, "Damn, with all this theory I got, I gotta go to on-the-job-training? What for?"
He said, "On on-the-job-training he works with me. Ive been here for 20 years. When I started work, they didn't even have auto mechanics. I ain't got no theory, I just got a whole bunch of practice."
What happened? A car came in making a whole lot of funny noise. This Brother here go get his book. He on page one, he ain't got to page 200. I'm sitting here listening to the car. He says, "What do you think it is?"
I say, "I think its the carburetor."
He says, "No I don't see anywhere in here where it says a carburetor make no noise like that." And he says, "How do you know its the carburetor?"
I said, "Well, n****r, with all them degrees as many as a thermometer, around 20 years ago, 19 to be exact, I was listening to the same kind of noise. And what I did was I took apart the voltage regulator and it wasn't that. Then I took apart the alternator and it wasn't that. I took apart the generator brushes and it wasn't that. I took apart the generator and it wasn't that. I took apart the generator and it wasn't even that. After I took apart all that I finally got to the carburetor and when I got to the carburetor I found that that's what it was. And I told myself that 'fool, next time you hear this sound you better take apart the carburetor first.'"
How did he learn? He learned through practice.
I dont care how much theory you got, if it don't have any practice applied to it, then that theory happens to be irrelevant. Right? Any theory you get, practice it. And when you practice it you make some mistakes. When you make a mistake, you correct that theory, and then it will be corrected theory that will be able to be applied and used in any situation. Thats what we've got to be able to do.
Every time I speak in a church I always try to say something, you know, about Martin Luther King. I have a lot of respect for Martin Luther King. I think he was one of the greatest orators that the country ever produced. And I listened to anyone who speaks well, because I like to listen to that. Martin Luther King said that it might look dark sometime, and it might look dark over here on the North Side. Maybe you thought the room was going to be packed with people and maybe you thought you might have to turn some people away and you might not have enough people here. Maybe some of the people you think should be here are not here and you think that, well if they're not here then it won't be as good as we thought it could have been. And maybe you thought that you need more people here than you have here. Maybe you think that the pigs are going to be able to pressure you and put enough pressure to squash your movement even before it starts. But Martin Luther King said that he heard somewhere that only when it is dark enough can you see the stars. And we're not worried about it being dark. He said that the arm of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward heaven.
We got Huey P. Newton in jail, and Eldridge Cleaver underground. And Alprentice Bunchy Carter has been murdered Bobby Hutton and John Huggins been murdered. And a lot of people think that the Black Panther Party in a sense is giving up. But let us say this: That we've made the kind of commitment to the people that hardly anyone else has ever made.
We have decided that although some of us come from what some of you would call petty-bourgeois families, though some of us could be in a sense on what you call the mountaintop. We could be integrated into the society working with people that we may never have a chance to work with. Maybe we could be on the mountaintop and maybe we wouldn't have to be hidin' when we go to speak places like this. Maybe we wouldn't have to worry about court cases and going to jail and being sick. We say that even though all of those luxuries exist on the mountaintop, we understand that you people and your problems are right here in the valley.
We in the Black Panther Party, because of our dedication and understanding, went into the valley knowing that the people are in the valley, knowing that our plight is the same plight as the people in the valley, knowing that our enemies are on the mountain, to our friends are in the valley, and even though its nice to be on the mountaintop, we're going back to the valley. Because we understand that there's work to be done in the valley, and when we get through with this work in the valley, then we got to go to the mountaintop. We're going to the mountaintop because there's a motherfucker on the mountaintop that's playing King, and he's been bullshitting us. And weve got to go up on the mountain top not for the purpose of living his life style and living like he lives. We've got to go up on the mountain top to make this motherfucker understand, goddamnit, that we are coming from the valley!
7. Drugs were found in Fred Hampton’s system after he died.
Because of his nonstop, tireless work for the Party (Hampton had been teaching a political education course at a local church the night before he was killed), his fiancée didn’t find it suspicious that he fell asleep so quickly the evening prior to the pre-dawn raid. But Hampton’s autopsy showed he had consumed a heavy dose of the barbiturate Seconal, which is typically used to sedate patients before surgery [PDF]. How the drug got into Hampton’s system has never been confirmed, though the Black Panther Party believed informant William O’Neal, who the FBI enlisted to infiltrate the Party, slipped it into Hampton’s drink on the evening of December 3, 1969.
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The United States has well over 100 years of soccer history. Much of it has yet to be chronicled. The leagues don’t have the bandwidth to cover it, which leaves it to sports historical societies and fans to uncover. Recently, the Society for American Soccer History produced an incredible report on Fred and Oliver Watson, the first known African American soccer players in the United States.
Oliver (b. 1872) and Fred (b. 1875) Watson were born in Rhode Island, and on September 26, 1894, the Pawtucket YMCA’s soccer team signed Oliver Watson to play for their team. They played that day against the Fall River Olympics, and while Pawtucket YMCA got destroyed by a 8-2 score, Oliver did score a goal. He became the first African American to score in a soccer match.
A year later, Fred also joined the team, and they were the first African Americans to play in a soccer match in this country. In 1901, both became the first to win a league championship when they were part of the Attleboro and Dodgeville team of the Rhode Island Amateur League.
Fred lined up as a defender, playing mostly fullback but eventually moving to centerback. Oliver, or Allie as he was known by his teammates, lined up as a forward. Fred worked in a bolt factory, but eventually became the first African American to play in an American professional soccer league, when he played for the Pawtucket Free Wanderers from 1898-1899. Pawtucket was a standout location in the early days of American soccer history, as it was one of the first places where the sport was embraced by natives and not just the immigrant populations from the United Kingdom.
The two brothers were not the only siblings in the Watson family. They had 3 older brothers: Charles, James, and Eugene. None of them ended up playing soccer, leaving Fred and Allie standing by themselves as the first African Americans in the game. Fred and Allie’s trailblazing quickly led to the formation of other clubs, including the first Black soccer organization in New York City. Progress continued through the years very slowly, with Black players eventually making a name for themselves on the national and international stage.
Fred Watson eventually played for 12 years, making 37 appearances. Oliver played 27 matches, scoring 15 goals. However, the two made history with every kick of the ball they made, creating a society where Black people could be found on the soccer field in the United States.
Many of America’s greatest soccer heroes may have had it harder to get onto the world’s stage if it wasn’t for the path that was forged by Oliver and Fred Watson. And, we wouldn’t know about this history if it wasn’t for the Society for American Soccer History’s research. They recently made a YouTube video chronicling the career of the Watson brothers, but it’s clear that more needs to be done to bring these stories out into the open. America’s modern soccer history may be young, but it’s clear that its history dates back almost as far as any other nation. And Black players were at the center of that early history.
Black soccer history in the United States can trace their lineage back to the true pioneers, Oliver and Fred Watson. And these are the types of stories that should be told throughout the year, and re-told for effect. This is American history. And more should be done to ensure that Oliver and Fred Watson can be viewed in the same light as Jackie Robinson, Willie O’Ree, or Kenny Washington as a true pioneer of Black sports. They shouldn’t be celebrated by just Black people. All of America should want to consume and preserve this history because it tells the story of the game in America.
The Society of American Soccer History started the work. It’s on all of us to keep it going.
This story concludes our daily series of Black History Month stories for 2021. This was a journey that I began a few years ago for personal knowledge and growth throughout an important month to me, and I am honored that I had the opportunity to bring these stories to you everyday throughout the month of February. If you missed an article or want to re-read any of them that you enjoyed over the past few years, check out our Black History Month hub. I hope that all of you can routinely refer to those articles, as they are stories that should be told and retold long after we leave February in the rearview. Thank you so much to all of you who read, commented, or shared these stories this month. Black History Month may be over, but the journey for knowledge continues. Let’s continue to educate ourselves and continue to grow as soccer fans and as people. History is made everyday, and together we can not only make it but bring those stories that deserve to be told to light and, most importantly, keep them there.