James Meredith
Warrior and the America That Created Him
by Meredith Coleman McGee
March 2013, 206pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Praeger

Hardcover: 978-0-313-39739-4
$65, £50, 57€, A90
eBook Available: 978-0-313-39740-0
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

On September 30, 1962, James H. Meredith became the first African American student admitted to the University of Mississippi, until then a segregated establishment—a watershed event in the American Civil Rights movement. Less than one year later, Meredith graduated with a degree in political science and history. The day after his graduation from “Ole Miss,” Meredith moved his family out of the state of Mississippi because he was a target on the Ku Klux Klan’s hit list.

This book provides an honest look at the life and times of Civil Rights icon James Howard Meredith within the context of the America that created him and his generation.

James Meredith is a Civil Rights icon who took on the U.S. federal government and forced it to take a stand on whether African Americans were entitled to receive higher education at the same schools as whites. James Meredith: Warrior and the America That Created Him provides an insightful, revealing examination of the state of the United States that engendered James Meredith and others of his generation who stood up for equality. The book examines Meredith’s early life; his actions that resulted in the integration of Ole Miss; his 1966 “March Against Fear,” during which he was shot by a shotgun-wielding sniper; and voting rights stories from the Civil Rights era.

The book also explores the roles played by famed Civil Rights activist Medgar W. Evers, Meredith’s legal team, and the NAACP in shaping the events that prompted President John F. Kennedy to send in armed troops to restore order and break Mississippi’s Jim Crow laws. The last two chapters focus on closing America’s wealth gap in modern-day society.


  • Includes information on Meredith's family history that has not previously been available to the general public
  • Discusses how America's wealth gap can be closed
  • Ideal for high school and college students, history lovers, and readers interested in exploring the Second Reconstruction
  • Covers Meredith's 2009 Walk for the Poor and his 2012 Walk for Education & Truth
  • Explores Black Power, race riots, poverty, and educational, political, and economic lopsidedness
  • Introduces readers to known and unknown participants in the Second Reconstruction
  • Features Fannie Lou Hamer, Unita Blackwell, Charles Sherrod, Bob Moses, and Stokely Carmichael
Meredith Coleman McGee is author of Married to Sin, a memoir about Darlene D. Collier; a professional writer for Typing Solutions Résumés & Etc; the website administrator of Shopheirs.com; an acquisition editor of Meredith Etc; a contributing writer for The Jackson Advocate; and the bookkeeper of Mose Dantzler Press. She founded Heirs United Investment Club and co-founded Mose Dantzler Press and Heirsskymall.com Inc. McGee previously served as a staff writer for The Jackson Advocate, as a community organizer for Southern Echo, and as a business developer for the Mississippi Association of Cooperatives. She is a niece of Civil Rights icon James H. Meredith. McGee holds a bachelor's degree in legal administration from University of West Florida and a masters of arts in rural community development and public policy from Antioch University McGregor (now Antioch University Midwest).


"This is a remarkable commentary on the life and career of an exceptional man who has always marched to his own drumbeat. James Meredith remains an enigma to many, but all of us have been compelled to admire his courage and independence. This volume represents a fascinating insight not only into the identity of this intriguing human being but also into many of the historic events of the stormy times in which he lived. It is an important addition to our understanding of our conflicted past but just as importantly to the recognition of our common humanity."—William F. Winter, former Governor of Mississippi

"As piercing and as lasting as the shotgun pellets which wounded him in 1966, this straightforward account of Mississippi's most heralded living freedom fighter is presented without excuse or pause by his niece, Meredith, who is herself a heroine in the war against injustice."—Alice Thomas-Tisdale, Publisher, The Jackson Advocate

"James Meredith: Warrior and the America That Created Him is a wonderful and much-needed book on one of my personal history makers. Thank you for providing such an insightful portrait of your uncle, civil rights icon James H. Meredith. Your book will provide a positive documentation of the man and that crucial period of American history. Congratulations on a job well done; I strongly endorse and encourage everyone to read your book."—Mrs. Dorothy T. Stewart, Jackson, Mississippi
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