Interview with James Figgs

So let me know what it felt like when you got there. I mean stories or what it was like to be there.


Well first When I got to Resurrection City I quite frankly was scared as hell, being in, ah, Washington D.C. and being out on, on the U.S. government turf and, and not being authorized to be there. And course we had got used to being places that we wasn't supposed to be. But, ah, you know, you couldn't help but think that if something happened, ah, Dr. King is not here** and we knew that if he had been there, you'd been a little bit more relaxed. Didn't quite have as, as, as much, ah, ah, ah, confidence, ah, with Dr. King not being with us. And of course but we had a determination to go on anyway, and, ah, ah, meeting strangers, and a lot of people at Resurrection City wasn't there for freedom. Well a lot of people they came to Resurrection City in Washington D.C. with, ah, ah, just there, ah, out of curiosity and or my own people, they were just out of curiosity and, and they had other alternatives being there. And 'cause even though you, you were there together, you still had to watch, ah, those, those, those few who wasn't there about the business. And you couldn't help think about, ah, the Memphis situation with Dr. King and the, the march that he, for the, ah, sanitation workers and those who were planted in the sanitation workers' march to disrupt, ah, ah, ah, that march. And you couldn't help think about where are they. You knew they were somewhere, ah, just because Dr. King was gone, but this still was one of his, ah, objective was to bring poor people together and the powers to be didn't want poor people together because it exposed America for what it really was, had forgotten about those who had built it on the sweat and tears and lives. And we were always watching even though we were being advised by people who were much older than we were how to conduct ourselves, how to behave and what have you. But, ah, after a couple of days, three days there you got the feeling that you had a job to do there and whatever you was asked to do, you would do it. And, ah, that sort of was the general attitude we had. Whatever little part that we could play as a group individually, ah, as a group we would do it.