Joan Trumpauer's mug shot from Jackson, MS
I spoke out.
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Joan Trumpauer

Freedom Fighter

I WAS put on death row at age 19 in Mississippi along with other Freedom Riders. The idea was to intimidate us because Parchman Penitentiary was a notorious, awful prison.

I had been taught to do unto others as I would have them do unto me and that all people were created equal. Segregation was wrong and I had to do something about it. I had protested in many sit-ins and picket lines before the Freedom Rides. The most violent protest was at the Jackson Woolworth lunch counter, which galvanized Martin Luther King’s 1963 March on Washington.

Joan Trumpauer’s mug shot and ticket stub to Alabama are at the Smithsonian. They will be used to tell her story and other women’s stories of courage and fighting for your beliefs.


Photo: Joan Trumpauer, mug shot taken by the City of Jackson (MS) Police Department, 1961

Content: An Ordinary Hero: The True Story of Joan Trumpauer Mulholland, documentary, 2013; John Dittmer interview with Joan Trumpauer, Library of Congress, 2017

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