William Chapel Missionary Baptist Church, Ruleville, MS

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On August 27, 1962 Fannie Lou Hamer’s life changed forever: invited by friend Mary Tucker to a civil rights meeting held at this small local church, Hamer was blown away by what she heard in the pulpit that day from the Southern Christian Leadership Conference’s James Bevel and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee’s James Forman.  For the first time, on her account, Hamer was introduced to civil rights that she was entitled to—and she planned to redeem them, immediately!  Four days later, along with 18 other people, Hamer traveled to the Sunflower County seat of Indianola to try to register to vote.  When Fannie Lou Hamer died on March 14, 1977, her funeral service was held at William Chapel.