The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till


The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till 
People who knew Mamie Till Mobley call her the mother of the Civil Rights Movement, yet she died in relative obscurity in Chicago in the spring of 2003. The brutal murder of her 14-year-old son, Emmett Till, in Mississippi in August 1955 for allegedly whistling at a white woman did as much as anything to spark the fight for civil rights. The crime touched the nerves of sex and race. It was straight-up dynamite. Under the threat of death, two sharecroppers—Willie Reed and Moses Wright, Emmett’s great uncle—gave testimony that should have put away Roy Bryant and J. W. Milam. Instead, an all-white jury acquitted the two men, who practically confessed to the murder in a Look magazine article four months later. In a place where a black man could die for eyeballing a white person, think of the guts it took to walk into a hostile courtroom and testify against two white men. Then there was Emmett’s mother, whose gracious grit made her son’s murder an international story. 2002, Keith Beauchamp.

Credit: Directed by Keith Beauchamp. Produced by Till Freedom Comes Productions, 2005. 70 min.

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