In this silent WSB newsfilm clip from May 16, 1962, African American Archie "Bullfrog Millhouse" Campbell waits at the Greyhound bus station before leaving Macon, Georgia for Detroit, Michigan on a one-way ticket a "reverse freedom ride." The clip begins with Archie Campbell wearing a hat with the phrase "Bullfrog Millhouse" standing outside a bus. Signs on the bus include "Detroit Express" and "Super Scenicruiser." Campbell appears to dance for the camera and shake his head; the bus driver also stands outside the bus. Later Campbell precedes a white woman off the bus, and the bus driver stores luggage under the bus. The Greyhound station's waiting area is shown beside the bus, although the clip is very dark. Also seen in the darkness is the neon Greyhound terminal sign. Finally Campbell again gets off the bus and stands beside it. Archie Campbell, an African American laborer in his forties, was the first African American from Macon, Georgia to accept the Macon's White Citizens Council for the Betterment of America offer for free transportation to California or any point north of Washington, D.C. as part of a summer campaign dubbed the "Freedom Ride North." George Singlemann of the White Citizens Council of Greater New Orleans introduced the Macon council to the idea of "reverse freedom rides" at a meeting held Thursday, May 10. The Macon Citizens Council began advertising the free bus ticket and five dollars spending money on the radio and television Saturday, May 12, and by Wednesday, May 16 had eight applicants in addition to Archie Campbell. Ross Lindsay, president of the Macon White Citizens Council, pledged to use treasury money if required to fund the "freedom rides north" as long as other southern states participated in the program. Campbell was reportedly beaten by other African Americans for riding the Macon bus during the February bus boycott earlier in the year. After arriving in Detroit, Campbell wanted to return to Macon but was afraid to do so. Citizens in Macon and Detroit volunteered to help Campbell return to Macon but first wanted assurance that he would not be harmed for returning. Other White Citizens Councils in Little Rock, Arkansas, Montgomery, Alabama, and New Orleans and Shreveport, Louisiana provided one-way tickets and five dollars spending money to send African Americans north. By May 27 nearly one hundred African Americans had participated in the "Freedom Rides North."
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 Archie "Bullfrog Millhouse" Campbell waiting for a bus ride as part of the White Citizens' Council "Freedom Ride North" to Detroit from Macon, Georgia, 1962 May 16, WSB-TV newsfilm collection, reel 0996, 14:32/16:35, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, The University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Ga, as presented in the Digital Library of Georgia.