Community Interviews conducted as part of the Jacksonville Community Remembrance Project
Sollie Mitchell (b. June 20, 1918; Oscilla, GA) was a Pullman porter who moved to Jacksonville as a child, partly as a result of his family fleeing from the consequences of racial terror in Georgia. When his mother passed away, a white family took him in and raised him, to whom Mr. Mitchell owes a lifelong debt of gratitude. His most treasured accomplishments are his many years serving as the second-highest active member of the Most Worshipful Union Grand Lodge of Florida.
Recorded July 3, 2019
Isaac Carnes (b. Nov. 21, 1941; Jacksonville) was an insurance investigator and a former member of the youth branch of the NAACP. He recalls the days when Jacksonville was racially segregated and when the black community was also segregated by class. He is a witness to the events of Axe Handle Saturday and says that it was not until he left Jacksonville that he could see the possibility of equality for black people. Recorded July 1, 2019
Bryant Rollins (b. December 13, 1937; Boston, MA) has dedicated most of his adult life to fighting for racial justice and civil rights. Originally from Boston, Mr. Rollins moved to Jacksonville for work. After he arrived, he realized that relatives of his from Florida had quite a remarkable civil-rights history as well. In fact, Mr. Rollins found himself working in the very building where one of his ancestors risked his life in the name of racial justice. Recorded July 6, 2019
Lloyd Pearson (b. Nov. 2, 1921; Jacksonville) worked for 30 years for the NAACP registering people to vote, registering thousands in Jacksonville. He was also the brother of local civil-right activist Rutledge Pearson, who helped organize the youth branch of the NAACP. Mr. Pearson lived in and saw the growth of the development of the black neighborhood of Rosedale, which originally was not a part of the city of Jacksonville. Mr. Pearson signed his name to the power bill and collected money so that his neighborhood could have power. Recorded June 19, 2019