Interview with Peter Orris


Peter Orris:

Ok, uh, in August of uh, the end of August of that year uh, the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party uh, challenged the seating of the regular Democratic Party at the Democratic Convention in Atlantic City and many of us came up uh, to Atlantic City to aid in that challenge and uh, part of that uh, those activities in Atlantic City, took place on the Boardwalk uh, in front of the convention center, and it was a very surrealistic kind of uh, setting uh, Fellini movie for want of a better word uh, there we were uh, in a, in a, in a circle on the Boardwalk in a vigil of maybe 30 or 40 of us uh, sitting down and uh, one person speaking uh, at, at a time. Or just sitting there and, and in a vigil with signs, and around us uh, were these uh merrymakers uh, for the convention and uh, vacationing in Atlantic City. And we had just returned from Mississippi, from the kinds of violence that we were seeing uh, that summer, and the kinds of intimidation and there we were sitting and, and very serious about what we were about and about the importance of the Democratic Party to respond to the challenge uh, and the need for racial equality in Mississippi in, amongst uh these uh, balloons and cotton candy and uh, noise makers and uh, and this - and as night fell, I'll never forget sitting on the Boardwalk as the night fell like that and people were all around us and we were sitting in the middle - a very uh, strange, strange uh, situation.