Interview with Joseph Azbell
QUESTION 29
INTERVIEWER:

SORRY I'M GOING TO HAVE YOU START THAT AGAIN AND NOT LOOK QUITE SO HIGH UP AT THE CEILING. BECAUSE WE GET A LITTLE REFLECTION ON YOUR GLASSES...

Joseph Azbell:

OK. When the white people learned of the court decision by television, and that was, television, by the way, played a very important part in the boycott. Without television there wouldn't have been a very successful boycott because it won the national public, it won attention all over the North. You saw things happening. But the white people didn't jump up and down and holler and scream like you would think. There wasn't any panic in the street, or what have you. They just said we won't ride the buses if the, and this is a quote, if the Niggers are going to be on there we're not going to be on there. In a sense, the white people boycotted the buses, and even to this hour in Montgomery today white people don't ride the buses, the blacks ride the buses. The buses are for the blacks. And you can go almost on any bus in any part of town you find one or two whites on there and the rest are blacks. And it can be filled up. It didn't really 'cause the thing of the waiting room, in the bus depots and train depots was of concern and the thing of interstate transportation where they had to go and ride Greyhound or Trailways, that had some concern, but as far as these it really didn't. It was like an anti-climatic thing. There was the White Citizens' Council that screamed, but they were a thousand, or two thousand people and then they dwindled down to nothing. And the Ku Kluxers, of course, screamed and shouted about the federal courts. But there wasn't any great commotion that the average, the white women with their cooks and their maids and babysitters were glad they didn't have to go out there to the black community to get them and take them home every day.