Production Team: NA
Interview Date: 1979
Interview Place: Birmingham, Alabama
Camera Roll: 1-2
Sound Rolls: 1
Produced by Blackside, Inc.
Housed at the Washington University Film and Media Archive, Henry Hampton Collection.
Interview with Carl Daniels, conducted by Blackside, Inc. in 1979, for Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Years (1954-1965). Washington University Libraries, Film and Media Archive, Henry Hampton Collection.
These transcripts contain material that did not appear in the final program. Only text appearing in bold italics was used in the final version of Eyes on the Prize.
IF I FALL, KEEP LOOKING WHERE I WAS.
You want me to look at you? Oh, OK.
HOW DO YOU UH… WHAT'S YOUR RESPONSE TO UH, BIRMINGHAM IN THE SIXTIES?
Well I can't say that I really have a… a… a real response. I can only go by what I heard, or and read and saw on T.V. what was going on at that time. And uh… at that time, seeing what was going on in Birmingham and being a native of Birmingham and living in Buffalo, New York, uh, I was hurt. Uh, not really ashamed, but hurt and sorry that things were the way they were at that time- But since I've been back in Birmingham, since 1966, I can see some changes that have been made, here in the city. And one of the changes, is that uh… there are a number of blacks in the communications field here, in the news media, from radio, T.V., and the newspapers. And at that time there were no blacks in either facets of communications, except black radio. And since 66, I've worked at uh… a white oriented radio station as a newsman, and after that I came up here at Channel 13, and now I'm the assignment editor, and I look back, I believe what happened in Birmingham in the early sixties, is responsible for me being where I am now, and having the responsibilities that I have now. I believe what happened in Birmingham in the sixties, raised the consciousness of uh… civic leaders in in both communities, black and white, that hey, something has got to be done. And… what really, what really prompted all of this was that, I believe the bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church was and the three girls who were killed, and the girls were killed, I believe people said, hey, you know, this is enough. Let's… we gotta stop. We can't keep on, going on killing kids. And I… I credit the deaths of those girls with whatever success in Birmingham that I might have obtained… Do I get the job? [laughter].
UH… TELL ME WHO YOU ARE AGAIN.
Uh… Carl Daniels. Carl… My name is Carl Daniels. And I'm the assignment editor here at Channel 13.
My name is Carl Daniels… My name is Carl Daniels, and I'm the assignment editor here at Channel 13.
LET'S TRY IT AGAIN.
OK. Do I get the job? Are you ready?
NO HE DOESN'T GIVE YOU THE JOB.
OK. My name is Carl Daniels and I'm the assignment editor here at Channel 13, in Birmingham. Do I get the job??
YES [laughter]. ANY OTHER PEARLS YOU HAVE FOR US? I MEAN, YOU DON'T HAVE TO GET UP IF YOU'VE GOT SOME OTHER PEARLS YOU WANT TO DROP.
No, let's see. You know, it's like I said. It's… I don't know the stories. You know, that I could tell, with, with some certainty, I just heard the stories and I, you know, really can't repeat them verbatim. There are so many amazing stories. You gotta get in touch with Reverend Gardner.
You got to. And uh, he could tell you some stories. I mean he could tell you some good stories, some funny stories, some sad stories… he could give you all the behind the scene maneuverings that were going on then between black ministers and white ministers. Civic leaders and black community leaders. See, everything wasn't done in the open, and there was a lot of behind the—I know this, there was a lot of behind the scene work that really, helped cool this situation down. So, you get in touch with him and you can spend hours with him. You could spend hours with him. He'd be a good resource.