Raymond 0. Arsenault, Ph.D.
Darryl G. Paulson, Ph.D.
Jay H. Sokolovsky, Ph.D.
University of South Florida St. Petersburg
Shortly before noon on December 29, 1966, Joseph Waller Jr., the twenty-five year old vice chairman of the local chapter of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating committee (SNCC), led seven African-American men on a protest march to city hall. They marched in unison, marking their steps with a loud rhythmic chant that bolstered their confidence and demonstrated their solidarity, occasionally breaking their cadence to invite other African Americans to join their procession. Many onlookers were reluctant to join the group, intimidated by the fact that conservative black community leaders had recently condemned SNCC's efforts and accused the group of seeking nothing more than publicity. Still they marched on, committed to their plan to hold a civil rights protest on the steps of city hall.
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Cutting, Anita Richway, "From Joe Waller to Omali Yeshitela: How a Controversial Mural Changed a Man" (2000). USFSP Honors Program Theses (Undergraduate). 76.