Interview with Nancy Jefferson
QUESTION 21
MADISON DAVIS LACY:

Since this series transcends so much of the movement and you've been a captain, a soldier and a stalwart of the movement, what's it all meant? What's it been about? Why do you keep on keeping on?

NANCY JEFFERSON:

Well I think it, that you must, because you do see some, some signs. You see a lot, you know, there, there's been a lot from the King days until now. Ah, had there not been a King, ah, there would not have been a, a Jesse. There would not have been a, a Harold. That just wouldn't have been, you know, there was, it started with that. And, and you can change if, if you stay in there and hang in there long enough, as, as, as the POWER group, you know, that meant a lot to me. Is so, that I've seen those people go from, from the welfare rolls to understanding what that voting power was all about and what their life was all about. And you must continue to do that. It's sort of like, ah, you know, I, I came from, from the country, from, backwards country, and we used to, ah, I always think about this. We used to, ah, have a big bell in the yard in Miss, Miss Burton's yard, you know, where I had to wash the dishes. And whenever anything happened and you had to pull that bell with, ah, the rope to get it to ting, especially on cold days. Ah, you, you'd, to get that bell to ring for dinner time at, at 12 o'clock, you--my job was to, as a little girl, is to pull the, the bell, you know. It was a rope on the big bell and so you, and sometime your hands would get raw from trying to get a ting out of that bell. Because if you get the ting, the bell will ring. And so I used to, you know, be pulling the bell, pulling the bell, and my hands sometime would be raw inside from trying to get the ting on a cold day. But finally I kept pulling. I'd say, you know, look, listening for the ting. And once I got the ting, I had it made, you know. I knew, even though my hands was raw, and I, I look at life at that. You keep pulling the bell and you'll get a ting, you know, here and there, but you must keep pulling and, and, and things happen, things happen, because as I said before, it had not been a King, had not been Rosa Parks sit down, had not King took on the mantle, ah, to, King took, they, you know, they had a platform first just like we did with Harold. ah, and then suggested King, you know, he didn't come first. They suggested him. And that's exactly what this is all about is that we must continue to do that because there will be others that will take up the mantle and people understand perfectly. One thing that we do since Harold Washington that he moved this city to an enlightenment that you will never, you'll never, I don't care who comes, they will not turn the people back to where they were. You can't do it. It's impossible 'cause too many people caught on.

MADISON DAVIS LACY:

Stop down. Exelecent.