Yes, I have. I’ve suffered some personal difficulties. Number one, I’m a native of the state, lived here all my life, but in 1958, as I came from a regional meeting in North Carolina, I boarded the bus in Meridian, Miss., on the front seat where I sat and was told to move by the police. I, of course, refused. I refused to move to the back of the bus after being ordered to do so by the driver. And after I refused, of course-of course he got off the bus and went and called the police in Meridian and they conferred. And after having conferred with one another, two came on the bus and asked to see my identification. I showed them my identification. And after having done that, they asked me to get off the bus and come over to the police station with them-which was across the street. I went over there with them and they asked me what I was trying to do-stir up trouble? I told them, no, I was merely going home to my wife and children. Of course I had two children at the time. And they said, well, you know how things are done here. I said, yes, I was born 30 miles from here, which was Decatur, Miss. And after some 15 or 20 minutes of interrogation they permitted me to go back on the bus.
I went and got back in the bus and, of course, I sat back on the front seat. And having refused to move again, the bus driver pulled off. I heard as we moved away-a number of people say that, “We should go on and pull him off.” Of course I sat there and some three blocks from the bus terminal a white man boarded the bus and struck me in the face. This was about 3 o’clock in the morning. I was alone. Of course I refused to move and I came all the way to Jackson without any further incidents.
That along with many others-I’ve had a number of threatening called-people calling me saying they were going to kill me, saying they were going to blow my home up and saying that I only had a few hours to live. I remember distinctly one individual calling me with a pistol on the other end, and he hit the cylinder and of course you could hear that it was a revolver. He said,”This is for you.” And I said, “Well, whenever my time comes, I’m ready.” And, well, we get such pranks pretty frequently. But that does not deter us from our goal of first-class citizenship and getting more people registered to vote and doing the things here that a democracy certainly is supposed to espouse and provide for its citizenry."
from The Autobiography of Medgar Evers
Answer to question: “In your work, Mr. Evers, in the state of Mississippi, have you personally been subjected to any difficulties or problems?”