Allen, Ralph W., 1941-2005
White SNCC member from Melrose, Massachusetts and Trinity College student, Allen came to Americus early in 1963 with Donald Harris and John Perdew and helped organize the Sumter County Movement. One of the "Americus Four," he was arrested in Americus, Georgia along with Harris and Perdew after an 8 August 1963 demonstration, charged with "seditious conspiracy" (inciting insurrection), a capital crime, and held without bail for three months. Released 1 November, 1963 by a three-judge federal panel who found the charge unconstitutional. On 6 November 1963, an all-white jury found Allen guilty of assault with intent to murder in lieu of the insurrection charge. Allen was sentenced to two years, but his sentence was appealed.
Archival Collections and Reference Resources
- Civil Rights in Mississippi Digital Archive (University of Southern Mississippi Libraries)
- WSB-TV Newsfilm Collection (Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection)
- WSB-TV newsfilm clip of lawyers for civil rights workers charged with the capital offense of insurrection, police, and trial bystanders in Americus, Georgia, 1963 October 31 (Moving images)
- WSB-TV newsfilm clip of Lester Maddox speaking to a white audience, African Americans protest segregation, and newsman Tom Brokaw interviews mayor T. Griffin Walker in Americus, Georgia, 1965 July 29 (Moving images)