Walter Francis White (1893-1955) is best known as the longtime head of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). During his tenure at the NAACP from 1931 to 1955, the civil rights organization initiated many legal challenges to segregation including the successful Brown v. Board of Education suit of 1954. Earlier in his career, White had buoyed (and funded) the Harlem Renaissance, adding to its lists the novels Fire in the Flint (1924) and Flight (1926). His brave investigations of lynching—assisted by his light skin color—resulted in the non-fictional exposé Rope and Faggot: A Biography of Judge Lynch (1929). Though White was careful to keep a safe distance between the NAACP and the more radical elements of the black freedom movement, the FBI kept a file on him from 1943 to 1957, unusual in its documentation of close cooperation between an African American author and J. Edgar Hoover.
FBI documents studying Walter White.
Material is in the public domain.
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