In this WSB newsfilm clip from Albany, Georgia on January 31, 1962, an unidentified WALB reporter interviews Marion Page, executive secretary of the Albany Movement, about the goals and efforts of the Albany Movement, including the ongoing bus boycott, the dearth of negotiations, and an appeal to the goodwill of all citizens.
Page responds to the reporter's question about the movement's plans for long-term transportation goals by affirming his hope for adequate public transportation, as well as the ongoing cooperation of local African Americans in organizing carpools and patronizing taxi services as long as necessary. Page explains freedom is the real issue, and that while carpools and taxis may be expensive, no price is too great to pay for freedom. Interspersed with Page's comments on the bus boycott are images of parked buses, the bus barn, and African Americans using carpools, as well as Albany Mayor Asa D. Kelley stating the need for discussion "among honest people seeking honest answers."
The Albany Movement-led bus boycott began after the January 12, 1962 arrest of Albany State College student Ola Mae Quarterman, called the "Rosa Parks of Albany" by some. On January 29, the Albany Movement and the local bus company Cities Transit successfully negotiated a compromise to end the boycott. However, the city commission not only refused to recognize the agreement between the two parties; they also refused to sign a written statement that they would not interfere with their arrangements. Bus service ended at midnight, January 31; that same day, the city commission issued a statement denying they had made any concessions during the December 18, 1961 discussions that had ended the December demonstrations in Albany. The commission also refused to establish a biracial committee for discussion.
Page explains that the city commission is unwilling to compromise because they are caught up in the "tide of southern politics" and feel they have to suppress African American resistance. While Page views Mayor Kelley as a standout leader and someone wiling to work with the Albany Movement, he is surprised that the white community has largely remained silent during the marches, protests, and boycotts. When asked about the movement's plans, Page refuses to reveal a specific strategy, but affirms that the Albany Movement is more unified, larger, and stronger than ever. Although Page downplays the chance that the movement will resume marching, he asserts that previous marches succeeded at bringing attention to the city commission and exposed their unwillingness to compromise on any matter. He hopes that the conflict can be resolved without the interference of federal marshals and that a normal, peaceful, daytime routine can be reinstated without the interference of a police state. He asserts that the Albany Movement seeks good will among all residents of Albany, and that the members are willing to meet with any group at any time. Page vouches that "there is a social revolution, not only in South Georgia, but in the whole world." And people "don't delay it, they merely make it go around in another way." At the interview's conclusion, Page is hopeful for a resolution in spite of the stalemate with the city council.
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 Marion Page, executive secretary of the Albany Movement, interviewed by an unidentified reporter regarding the Albany Movement's efforts to secure civil rights for African Americans in Albany, Georgia, 1962 January 31, WSB-TV newsfilm collection, reel 1046, 00:00/10:01, Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection, The University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Ga, as presented in the Digital Library of Georgia.