Reporter: Moore, Ray, 1922-.
In this WSB newsfilm clip from Athens, Georgia on January 11, 1961, Hamilton Holmes and Charlayne Hunter become the first African American students at the University of Georgia, and white students riot over the university's integration.
Several nighttime shots of a January 11 riot are interspersed throughout the clip. Car headlights and a police car are seen on Athens roads; a crowd on campus mills in the darkness. Firecrackers and smoke light up a sidewalk. University president O. C. Aderhold speaks to reporters, possibly from inside the library. African American students Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes load their luggage into a car before getting into the car themselves. Daytime clips include students, reporters, and cameramen on campus. A sign on a door of Myers Hall reads, "This dormitory is closed to young men today. Please buzz for your date and wait out side!" Hunter, surrounded by a crowd, speaks to a reporter. President Aderhold walks down the library steps followed by cameras and reporters. Also, Hamilton Holmes and Charlayne Hunter are interviewed by a reporter as they sit on a couch inside. Holmes explains they are attending the university "to acquire a sound education" more than "to break down any barriers or to make history or things of that sort." Various trophies won by Holmes, who was on the football and track teams in high school, sit on a mantle in his parents' home.
African American students Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes first applied to the University of Georgia in July 1959. University officials claimed "lack of space" and refused to admit the two for several quarters. In the fall of 1960, African American attorneys Donald Hollowell, Constance B. Motley, and Horace T. Ward filed a federal lawsuit seeking admission for the two students. Federal judge William A. Bootle on January 6, 1961 ordered the university to admit the two students, ending the university's segregation and on January 11 the two attended their first day of classes at the university. President Aderhold and the deans of the university met in the library for three hours that day but did not make any statements at the end of the meeting. That evening after the school basketball team lost to Georgia Institute of Technology, students rioted outside of Myers Hall, Charlayne Hunter's dormitory. University officials suspended Hunter and Holmes "for their own protection" and sent them back to Atlanta that night. January 13, Judge Bootle ordered the students readmitted to the university and the two returned to campus January 16.
Title supplied by cataloger.
The Civil Rights Digital Library received support from a National Leadership Grant for Libraries awarded to the University of Georgia by the Institute of Museum and Library Services for digital conversion and description of the WSB-TV Newsfilm Collection.
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Cite as: WSB-TV newsfilm clip of African American students Hamilton Holmes and Charlayne Hunter as well as white students rioting over integration at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia, 1961 January 11, WSB-TV newsfilm collection, reel 0911, 45:47/50:54, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, The University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Ga, as presented in the Digital Library of Georgia.