Walter Bruce Oral History Interview

Created by
Civil Rights History Project, American, founded 2009
Interview of
Bruce, Walter, American, 1928 - 2014
Interviewed by
Dittmer, John Ph. D., American, born 1939
Subject of
Mississippi Freedom Summer Project, American, founded 1964
Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, American, founded 1964
Duration: 01:24:55
video recordings
oral histories
digital media - born digital
Collection title
Civil Rights History Project
Media Arts-Film and Video
Place collected
Durant, Holmes County, Mississippi, United States, North and Central America
March 11, 2013
The oral history consists of nine digital files: 2011.174.71.1a, 2011.174.71.1b, 2011.174.71.1c, 2011.174.71.1d, 2011.174.71.1e, 2011.174.71.1f, 2011.174.71.1g, 2011.174.71.1h, and 2011.174.71.1i.
Walter Bruce shares memories of his childhood in Durant, Mississippi, where his family sharecropped. As a young man he became a carpenter and also a gospel singer. He describes his early involvement in the Civil Rights Movement, including his participation in Mississippi Freedom Summer. Bruce was involved in community and political organizing throughout the 1960s, from helping to start health clinics and participating in the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party to his involvement in sit-ins and marches. Bruce also discusses the process of choosing and running black candidates for political office in the 1960s.
LOC ID: afc2010039_crhp0071
American South
Associations and institutions
Civil rights
Gospel (Music)
Politics (Practical)
Singers (Musicians)
Social reform
United States--History--1961-1969
Credit Line
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in partnership with the American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
Object number
Restrictions & Rights
© Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture and The American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

NOTE: Cataloging is an ongoing process and we may update this record as we conduct additional research and review. If you have more information about this object, please contact us at