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Date: Monday, January 1, 2001 
Question/Topic: C. K. Steele - Civil Rights - Tallahassee - Bus Boycott 
Answer/Pointer: C. K. Steele: Tallahassee black clergyman active in civil rights movement. Died Aug 19, 1980. The following is an excerpt from Forum, the Magazine of the Florida Humanities Council, Winter 1994/95, a copy of which is in the Expanding File under C for Civil Rights: "Early on in the civil rights movement inTallahassee, the Reverend Charles Kenzie Steele led a campaign for human rights that permanently altered that city's race relations. The bus boycoitt there and its sequel serve as a model for successful nonviolent protest. C.K. Steele also made a significant contribution to the national civil rights effort as executive vice president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. As a leader, Steele was resolute, brave, eloquently and strategically shrewd. But perhaps operating in the broad shadow of Martin Luther King, Jr., he has received relatively little recognition for his significant role in one of this century's crucial social movements. Steele's commitment to the ministry and to the cause of civil rights developed early. He was born in 1914 in Bluefield, West Virginia, an area noted for its political independence. . . . Steele did not encounter traditional southern racism until he attended Morehouse College in Atlanta in 1934. There he was both surprised and appalled by the hostilities Negroes faced daily. In Atlanta, the strict enforcement of segregation had a profound effect on Steele. He concluded that the struggle for social justice must be part of any African-American minister's mission. It was a significant turning point for a man who had begun preaching at age 15. Now, he had identified the central focus of his ministry. Like King, Steele was a part of the long tradition in the African-American community in which the struggle against racial discrimination was led by ministers. . . ." See also Vertical File - LC&T - Biography Vertical File - LC&T - Race Relations 
Librarian: LCLCPL 

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