Interview with John Hulett

OK, when you tried to get people registered to vote, what were some of the difficulties of getting Black people to want to register?


One of the things, when we first started to register people, we came here, to the courthouse, and I believe this was some time in the first part of March, the registration days in this county during that time was two days a month. The first Monday, I believe the third Monday of each month, that you could get registered. We came to the courthouse on the first Monday in March, attempted to get registered. The registrars all failed to show up, all except one. Because of our, by coming here to register, they changed the registration place, and took us to an old jail, and the place was not being moved at that time, that's where most of us registered, at that old jail. They didn't want Blacks to come to the courthouse to get registered. That was one of the things they done. But there was other intimidation. For example, while I was sitting out there, waiting for people to go in and take their tests, many of the White mens would ride by in pickup trucks with shotguns. It was just intimidation to people. And that was some of the things they--other things they had, when the weather got cool or cold, the, sometime in the summertime when it was hot, they cut the water off so we couldn't get water to drink. And they made peoples come over and over and over again, and they would turn them down. So this kind of stirred things up. And later the federal registers came into our county and started registering peoples. So most people went to the federal registers where they could get registered. But those were just some of the conditions that existed during that time. Peoples who lived on plantations and the farms, and sharecroppers, they didn't own their own land. But they're told they're not going to get registered. If they registered they could not live on the plantation any longer. And many families had to move during the summer months, especially around August, had to leave their crops and go to other places, to, to, to try to make a living.