Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Mississippi Sovereignty Commission (UPDATE below)

Late yesterday this post appeared on the neo-Confederate monitoring site, Anti-Neo-Confederate.

The information provided there is consistent with that which had been reported to me last week and again over the weekend from sources within and outside the state of Vermont.

Early in the period of American history when school de-segregation was a new issue, an agency was created by the state of Mississippi to monitor the activities of civil rights groups and activists, and to cast a positive light on school segregation in the South.  It was called the Mississippi Sovereignty Commission. [1]

The commission existed from 1956 until 1977.  In 1977 state lawmakers sealed the commissions files until 2027.  As a result of an ACLU lawsuit, the state was ordered to open the records by US District Court Judge William H. Barbour, Jr in 1989.  After a delay due to legal challenges of that order, the files became available online to the public in March of 1998. [2]

Among the documents now available for public inspection are a number pertaining to Thomas H. Naylor of the Education Finance Commission, including this 1960 letter to Mississippi Gov. Ross Barnett from Sovereignty Commission Director Albert Jones.  Jones describes the conclusions and recommendations of Naylor and Attorney General Patterson regarding funding issues for a segregated school in Montgomery County, MS. [3]

There is also a 1964 letter from T. H. Naylor, Jr., then Executive Secretary of the Education Finance Commission to the then current Sovereignty Commission Director, Erle Johnston, regarding a paper that that Naylor had written for an upcoming pamphlet the Sovereignty Commission was creating for the Mississippi School Construction Program. [4] [5] [6]

There are numerous other Thomas H. Naylor (also: T.H. Naylor, Jr; T.H. Naylor; Tommie Naylor; Tommy Naylor; Tommy H. Naylor) documents listed as on file in the electronic archive of the Sovereignty Commission. [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19] [20] [21]

UPDATE (11:31AM):  During a one hour interview today on the Steve & Gordy program (11:00 AM - 12:00 PM) on AM 1490 WKVT, Thomas H. Naylor, founder of SVR, identified the Thomas H. Naylor named above in Mississippi Sovereignty Commission documents as his father, now deceased.


At Tuesday, February 20, 2007 at 11:35:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thomas Naylor claims this person is his father. He said it on 1490 AM WKVT, the "Live & Local" Show.


At Tuesday, February 20, 2007 at 11:59:00 AM EST , Blogger Thomas Rowley said...

That was noted here in real time. Thank you.

At Tuesday, February 20, 2007 at 1:09:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Call me crazy... but I notice that most of the documents say Thomas Naylor and Thomas Naylor Jr.

Perhaps it was father and son?

I don't think so. But it was just something I noticed in these documents.

Kinda like authenticating George W. Bush's service papers, remember?

At Sunday, February 25, 2007 at 9:41:00 PM EST , Blogger Edward H. Sebesta said...


I am blogging some new material abut Naylor at the above blog.


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