Fannie Lou Hamer and Freedom Farmers (Sunflower County, MS)
Fannie Lou Hamer forged a new path for rural Black people to escape poverty and hunger. In 1960 she set aside her years of voting rights activism to build an innovative new system — cooperative farming. Her Freedom Farm Cooperative, which enabled Black families to own and cultivate land communally, trading work on the farm for a share of the crops they produced, fed 1,600 families by 1972 and became the prototype for the modern food banking system.
LaDonna Redmond and Monica M. White, Freedom Farmers: Agricultural Resistance and the Black Freedom Movement (UNC Press, 2018).
Galleries & Exhibits
- 11865-1925: Hunger in the Industrial City
- 21929-1940: America in Crisis and Recovery
- 31945-1965: WWII and the Paradoxes of the Postwar Era
- 41955-1980: The Fight for the Right to Food
- 51975-1996: The Unmaking of the Great Society
- 61997-Present: How It Is — And How It Should Be