Interview with Reverend Dana Greeley
QUESTION 20
INTERVIEWER:

WHEN YOU GOT THERE, GOT ABOUT THE BUSINESS OF UH, OF DOING WHAT YOU COME TO DO IN SELMA, WHAT SPECIFICALLY WAS YOUR ROLE? HOW DID YOU BEGIN YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THAT MOVEMENT?

Rev. Dana Greeley:

What specifically was my role in Selma? Uh, you know that is a little while back, and though I continue to live on the inspiration of it, to a considerable extent I can't remember the detail. I remember uh, uh, working on the uh, uh, service for uh, James Reeb about five or six of us working together. Martin Luther King wasn't there at the time. He arrived later. I remember perhaps as vividly as that, the uh consultations in the Brown Chapel and the services or constant uh, worship and singing in the Brown Chapel. The place was packed. Uh, I spoke, others spoke, uh, the uh, the minister there presided, introduced us one at a time. Um, I guess that we already felt or almost immediately felt assimilated or oriented to the cause and to the group. So outstanding in my mind, are uh, were, were the uh, the uh, orientation that was given to us by a number of uh local people and our own advance guard in that Catholic Church when we first arrived the, the meetings in the Brown Chapel one succeeding another, but, but full of great enthusiasm and great commitment. Absolutely wonderful and a third, would be, no, the third would be the arranging of the service, the fourth, the service. The fifth, uh, of course at the Selma line and the confrontation there, I remember speaking with uh, with Wilson rather uh, rather uh, resolutely and trying to get a compromise with regard to ‘marching to the uh, courthouse. We finally did get a compromise. Clark was unyielding, uh, Wilson Baker was uh, was certainly more open and rational. Those are the things that stand out in my mind.