Oral history interview with Ed Hamlett, 2000


Hamlett, Ed, 1939- (Interviewee)
Michaels, Sheila, 1939-2017 (Interviewer)
Oral history interview with Ed Hamlett, 2000
Other Titles
Reminiscences of Ed Hamlett, 2000; Oral history of Ed Hamlett, 2000
In this interview with Sheila Michaels, Ed Hamlett discusses his education, participation with civil rights organizations, and his professional career. Hamlett discusses his experience with race relations in his hometown of Fulton, Kentucky; his family's history; and his mother's belief that he would enter the ministry. Hamlett recounts the law enforcement career of his paternal grandfather "Big St ick" Hamlett, his father's work on the railroad and how it required the family to move from Fulton, to Jackson, and then to Memphis, Tennessee. He recounts his mother's work as a nurse. He discusses his reasons for becoming involved in activism, and his work with several organizations including: the Southern Student Organizing Committee (SSOC), Nonviolent Action Group (NAG), National Student Association (NSA), Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the White Southern Student Project (WSP), Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), Southern Conference for Human Welfare (SCHW), Council of Federated Organization (COFO), Community of the Performing Arts (COPA), and the White Folks Project (WFP). Hamlett provides his perspective on the difference between SNCC and SSOC's efforts to secure Southern Illinois University students to protest in Jackson, Tennessee. Hamlett discusses his college career at Union University, the University of Tennessee, and Georgetown; his work with campus based chaplains to desegregate off-campus eating establishments while at the University of Tennessee; and the pickets organized and executed between spring 1962 and January 1963. Hamlett names people associated with the White Folks Project, and explains his father's commitment to voting and its impact on his understanding of Black citizen's loss of their homes, in Fayette and Haywood County. He also discusses the impact of his activism at the University of Tennessee and his agreement to not initiate protest activity at Union University
Collection Name
Sheila Michaels civil rights organization oral history collection
Civil rights movements--History--20th century.--United States; Civil rights demonstrations--United States; United States Race relations 20th century; Hamlett, Ed, 1939-; Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (U.S.); Southern Student Organizing Committee (Nashville, Tenn.); White Folks Project; Congress of Racial Equality; Union University (Jackson, Tenn.); University of Tennessee at Nashville
oral histories
Physical Description
179 pages
Note (Biographical)
Robert Edwin Hamlett was born in 1939 in Fulton, Kentucky, the only child of James Clifton Hamlett and Sally Mae Bailey Hamlett. His father worked steadily during the Depression, and later secured employment with the Illinois Central Railroad. His mot her worked as a nurse. Both were active in the church, he as a deacon, and she as a Sunday school teacher. Hamlett attended Jackson Junior High School, graduated from Jackson High school in 1957, and was licensed to preach in 1958. He attended several colleges including University of Tennessee and Georgetown University before completing, his undergraduate studies at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee. Hamlett was active with several Civil Rights Movement organizations including, the Southern Student Organizing Committee (SSOC), Nonviolent Action Group (NAG), National Student Association (NSA), Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the White Southern Student Project (WSP), and the White Folks Project (WFP). He attended divinity school before pursuing a career in nursing after earning a degree from the University of Tennessee at Nashville. He campaigned to establish a union at Vanderbilt Hospital. Hamlett married Linda Wilson and they have two children
Interviewed by Sheila Michaels on November 17, 2000
Note (Provenance)
Sheila Michaels, Gift circa 1998-2005
Library Location
Columbia Center for Oral History, Columbia University
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Catalog Record
Also In
Oral History Archives at Columbia
Time-Based Media
Time-Based Media
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