• J. Isaac Noel Benjamin, II

A Chat with History-The Life of Civil Rights Activist Fred L. Shuttleworth


Courtesy Photo from Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth. Pictured are Rev Fred L. Shuttleworth and children heading to segregated school.


I Can't imagine what it would be like to wake up one day and realize you are the wife of Mosses. Such was the realization of Dr. Sephira Bailey Shuttlesworth, wife of the late Rev. Fred L. Shuttleworth. "You have to understand, that what we know as the Civil Rights Movement, was, in fact, a mandate from God," Shuttleworth stated. "My husband, Fred, was just an ordinary man on an extraordinary mission.


" As a journalist, I pinched myself and concluded that I was very fortunate. Right place, right time and all that. Dr. Shuttleworth granted a first-hand eye witness account of living history complete with first-hand never-before-seen pictures to publish. Moreover, as an objective journalist, I do not qualify history as black or white. I verify that the historical account did happen and that it is an accurate account. History is history, black, white or purple. What follows is a first-hand account of history from a person who lived and survived from inside of the turmoil that became a national struggle for equality.

Courtesy Photo from Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth. Press Conference (L to R) Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Rev Fred L. Shuttleworth.


Rev. Fred L. Shuttlesworth was born as Freddie Lee Robinson, and he took the name of his stepfather, William N. Shuttlesworth. He was married to Ruby Keeler Shuttlesworth, with whom he had four children: Patricia Shuttlesworth Massengill, Ruby Shuttlesworth Bester, and Fred L. Shuttlesworth Jr.

Courtesy Photo from Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth. Pictured are the original members of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference


Rev Fred L Shuttlesworth, teamed up with Rev. Ralph Abernathy and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the concept of a non-violent movement was born. Their partnership and steadfast conviction to duty helped changed the world. Rev. Shuttlesworth was a storied civil rights leader who survived beatings and bombings in racially impaired Alabama. He stood tall as he fought against racial injustice alongside other African Americans. "History talks a lot about what Dr. King did," Dr. Shuttlesworth notes, "however, there was quite a bit of planning and strategy that went into organizing such a movement. Dr. King did not do this by himself."


Fred Shuttlesworth was a child of poor black Alabama whose ministerial degree was from an unaccredited black school He later earned a master’s degree in education from Alabama State College. Fred Shuttlesworth civil rights activist, minister. Fred Shuttlesworth is receiving overdue recognition.


Fred Shuttlesworth Biography of Fred Shuttlesworth. Fred Shuttlesworth was born Fred Lee Robinson. Fred Shuttlesworth civil rights activist and a minister is just now receiving overdue recognition. Fred Shuttlesworth and Andrew Manis, author of Shuttleworth said that "there is no need for the highway patrol, local police can handle it with the Negroes and whites being orderly and respectful as they always are." Fred Shuttlesworth was a man that racists' bombs, beatings, and firehoses couldn't stop. “Segregation at All Costs: Bull Connor and the Civil Rights Movement "

Courtesy Photo from Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth. Pictured are (L to R) Sir Desmond Mpilo Tutu and Rev. Fred L. Shuttleworth


I waited a week to see Shuttleworth get hit with a hose. Black and White: The confrontation between Reverend Fred L. Printed documents of the Southern Conference Educational Fund, Inc, or SCEF, ie, The Southern Patriot, newspaper of the SCEF, letters of Fred Shuttleworth, president of SCEF and the Southern Regional Council are a part of the collection. Shuttleworth would kick off Lewis University's observance of Black History Month with an appearance on campus Wednesday Shuttleworth, a former Birmingham, Alabama, Unearth information about Fred Shuttlesworth like phone number, address, and email using the people search directory on USA-People-Search com advertisement. When you find a listing that looks like the Fred Shuttlesworth you are searching for, click the View Details link to the right of the listing to peruse all the details we have on the person. Shuttleworth and Eugene "Bull” Connor, and Janice Weaver, author of Harry Houdini: The Legend of the World's Greatest Escape Artist. Fred L Shuttleworth, which was destroyed by a dynamite blast. Black and White: The Confrontation Between Reverend Fred L. Rev Fred L Shuttleworth and the ACHR with the help of SCLC, MLK. He helped Martin Luther King Jr during the civil rights movement and was given an acceptance award while visiting with Dr. King.”

Courtesy Photo from Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth. Pictured are (L to R) Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Rev. Fred L. Shuttleworth.


“Born in Mount Meigs, Alabama, Shuttlesworth became pastor of the. Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights to take up the work formerly done by the NAACP. It used both litigation and direct action to pursue their goals. Shuttlesworth somehow escaped unhurt even though his house was heavily damaged. Ku Klux Klan told Shuttlesworth as he came out of his home, "If I were you, I'd get out of town as quick as I could."


Led by Southern Christian Leadership Conference members T. J. Jemison from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Rev. A. L. Davis from New Orleans, Louisiana adopted a motto to underscore its commitment to nonviolence: "Not one hair of one head of one person will be harmed " Shuttlesworth embraced that philosophy, even though his personality was combative, headstrong and sometimes blunt-outspoken and to the point that he frequently antagonized his colleagues in the movement as well as his opponents. He alienated some members of his congregation by devoting as much time as he did to the civil rights movement, at the expense of weddings, funerals, and other ordinary church functions.

Courtesy Photo from Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth. Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth and Rev. Fred L. Shuttleworth riding the bus.


Shuttleworth moved to Cincinnati, Ohio, and took up the pastorate of the Revelation Baptist Church. Shuttlesworth was personally fearless, even though he was aware of the risks he ran. The mob beat Shuttlesworth with chains and brass knuckles in the street while someone stabbed his wife. Shuttlesworth initially warned that Alabama was extremely volatile when consulted before the Freedom Rides began. After it became certain that the Freedom Rides were to be carried out, Shuttlesworth worked with the coalition. The violence in Anniston and Birmingham almost led to a quick end to the Freedom Rides. After the Riders were severely beaten and nearly killed in Birmingham and Anniston during the Rides, he sent deacons to pick up the Riders from a hospital in Anniston. The violence in Anniston and Birmingham almost led to a quick end to the Freedom Rides. After the violence that occurred in Alabama but before the Freedom Riders could move on, Attorney General. Shuttlesworth's commitment to the Freedom Rides was highlighted by his wiliness to ride himself. While Shuttlesworth was willing to negotiate with political and business leaders for peaceful abandonment of segregation, he believed, with good reason, that they would not take any steps that they were not forced to make.”


“On appeals, the case reached the US Supreme Court. Eugene "Bull" Connor, the Commissioner of Public Safety and the most powerful public official in Birmingham, who used Klan groups to heighten violence against blacks in the city. Even as the business class was beginning to see the end of segregation, Connor was determined to maintain it. They resented both the damage Connor was doing to Birmingham's image around the world and his high-handed attitude toward them. Augustine, Florida which he often cited as the place where the civil rights struggle met with the most violent resistance, taking part in marches and widely publicized beach wade-ins. Selma to Montgomery which led to the passage of the. In later years he took part in commemorative activities in Selma at the time of the anniversary of the famous march.”


“Roger Robinson in the television miniseries. He and his second wife, Sephira, moved to downtown Birmingham where he was receiving medical treatment. Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport. Timeline of the American Civil Rights Movement. He died at Princeton Baptist Medical Center,” his wife, Dr. Sephira Bailey Shuttlesworth, said.

As the struggle began, Dr. King organized two tumultuous weeks of daily demonstrations by black children, students, clergymen, and others against a rigidly segregated society. Eugene Bull Connor, ' intransigent public safety commissioner, scattering peaceful marchers with fire hoses, police dogs and nightsticks, provoked a national outcry. The brutality helped galvanize the conscience of the nation, as did the Ku Klux Klan's bombing of a black church in Birmingham that summer, which killed four girls at Sunday school. Shuttlesworth actions in Birmingham led to Selma, and those two became the basis of the civil rights struggle. Mr. Shuttlesworth, he added, had no equal regarding courage and putting his life on the line of fire to battle segregation. King’s continued with his efforts to unify the black clergy and their flocks to combat Jim Crow laws.”


“Shuttlesworth and Dr. King stood in sharp contrast to each other concerning background, personality, and strategies. A graduate of Morehouse College, he held a Ph.D. in systematic theology from Boston University. His mother, Alberta Robinson, later married William Shuttlesworth, a farmer. He worked as a laborer and a truck driver before graduating from alma mater.


As his biographer, pointed out: "The following year, he and his wife tried to register their child at a white Birmingham high school. Martin Luther King, Ralph David Abernathy and. The new organization was committed to using nonviolence in the struggle for civil rights, and SCLC adopted the motto: "Not one hair of one head of one person will be harmed." Godfrey Hodgson has pointed out: "Shuttlesworth always acknowledged King's leadership, and marched and went to jail with him. However, when King came to Shuttlesworth's home town for a historic trial of strength with segregation, he did not like being taken for granted. Congress on Racial Equality CORE organizes its. Shuttlesworth also led the mass demonstrations against segregation in Southern Christian Leadership Conference, but resigned claiming that "deceit, mistrust and a lack of spiritual discipline and truth have eaten at the core of this once-hallowed organization."


Courtesy Photo from Dr. Sephira B. Shuttleworth. Pictured are (L to R) Rev. Fred L. Shuttleworth, President Barack Obama, and President Bill Clinton at the Bridge


“We Negroes shall never become enemies of the white people. Birmingham is probably the most thoroughly segregated city in the United States. The entire country is aware of this city ugly record of police brutality. There have been more unsolved bombings of Negro homes and churches in Birmingham. More than in any city in this nation. Online news sections of the Cincinnati Enquirer and The Kentucky Enquirer noted. A statue of Shuttleworth greets visitors to Birmingham's Civil Rights Institute. A tribute to Shuttlesworth's life and times that has curiously been missing for decades. Shuttlesworth survived several attempts on his life while organizing black citizens. The most fiercely-enforced segregation policies in our country wherein Birmingham, Alabama.”

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