Welcome to the Yale Club of Houston - The Strange Demise of Jim Crow

The Strange Demise of Jim Crow

The Desegregation of Houston
Featuring Thomas Cole '71 and William Howze '67
Thursday, February 24, 6 p.m.
Reception, Film and Discussion


While other southern cities rocked with violence, Houston integrated its public accommodations relatively peacefully.  Over the course of a decade of interviews, Thomas Cole, JE '71, chronicled the experiences of civil rights leader Eldrewey Stearns and the local desegregation movement, culminating in the publication of No Color Is My Kind: The Life of Eldrewey Stearns and the Integration of Houston.

Mr. Cole's book was then developed into a documentary, The Strange Demise of Jim Crow.   According to California Newsreel,

The Strange Demise of Jim Crow is a multi-level story of urban power and change: student demonstrators vs. segregationists; the white power structure's fear of integration vs. their greater fear of violence, embarrassing national publicity and financial losses; secret deal-making vs. freedom of the press.

Most of all, the documentary demonstrates how threats of demonstrations and civic strife compelled the power elite to negotiate with more moderate, "responsible" black leaders and neutralize arch-segregationists. At the
same time, by censoring news coverage, Houston integrated peacefully but also undermined efforts to build a mass movement that might truly threaten and destabilize white power and privilege.

Come join author and film producer Thomas Cole, film co-producer and editor Wiliam Howze, SM '67, and fellow Yale alumni for a screening of The Strange Demise of Jim Crow followed by a lively discussion of this critical period in Houston history.

Our schedule:

  • 6:00 - 6:45 pm       Reception
  • 6:45 - 7:45 pm       Screening of "The Strange Demise of Jim Crow"
  • 7:45 - 8:30 pm       Discussion with Tom Cole and Bill Howze

Location: 14 Pews, 800 Aurora, Houston, TX 77009


 Learn more about the film here and about the book here.

We appreciate the support of the UTHSC McGovern Center for Humanities and Ethics in organizing this program. 

Click here to buy tickets!!!

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