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Greensboro Sit-ins - Launch of a Civil Rights Movement

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New Protests Are Followed By Arrests
[Lunch counters re-open here. B1]

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Wednesday, February 24, 1960.

CHARLOTTE, Feb. 23 (AP) — Negro students, apparently welcoming the probability of arrest, resumed nonviolent demonstrations against segregated lunch counters in North Carolina today. Police in two cities arrested demonstrators.

The resumption of the passive resistance movement after a lapse of several days in many cities followed a state wide strategy meeting in Durham of Negro student leaders. The students voted to continue their protest by sitdown demonstrations, boycott and picket line until they reach their goal of desegregated lunch counters.

Police arrested 22 demonstrators in Winston-Salem 12 Negroes and 10 whites as they sat at a white lunch counter marked for use of F.W. Woolworth Co. employees and their guests. The Negro students came from Winston-Salem Teachers College and the whites from Wake Forest College.

Negro spectators cheered as police led each of the demonstrators to patrol cars for transportation to headquarters and booking on charges of trespass.

In Charlotte, two Negroes were arrested on assault charges and a third on a charge of violating a fire ordinance.

About 70 Negro students from Johnson C. Smith University milled outside the door of the basement cafeteria of the Belk Bros. department store. Police and fire department officials ordered the group to disperse.

A Negro student, 21-year-old Charles Allen McNeil of Fayetteville, was booked on a charge of assault on a female after a white woman, Mrs. J.T. Morris of Monroe, claimed that he pushed her.

Shortly thereafter another shoving incident occurred.

"Arrest both of them and put me down as a witness because I saw it," said Charlotte Police Chief Jesse James to several policemen in the store.

Officers booked John Byron Shamberger, a 19-year old Negro from Asheboro, on a charge of simple assault on Gilbert Cooper of Charlotte, a white man. A third Negro, Elvin John Ryan, 20, of Elizabeth, N.J., was charged with violating the fire ordinance against blocking an entrance.

"This is not the kind of arrest we need," ministerial student Charles Jones warned his fellow demonstrators. He urged them to disperse.

"Start milling around and try to get inside the cafeteria if you can," Jones added.

Only a few days ago Jones had declared the Charlotte demonstrations would be halted because "we have made our point." But that was before the strategy meeting in Durham Sunday night which decided to continue "not withstanding the threats of arrests, imprisonment or other harassment and punishment."

Students Identified

The United Press-International News Service identified the arrested Wake students as Linda Evelyn Guy, 18, of New Orleans, Linda G. Cohen of Winston-Salem; Margaret Ann Dutton, 21 of 126 Tate St., Greensboro; Joe Brown Chandler, 20 of Fayetteville; Donald F. Bailey, 20 of Cliffside, Paul Virgil Watson, 20, of Route 2, Oxford, George Williamson Jr., 20, of Atlanta; Jerry B. Wilson, 20, of Statesville, and William Penn Haney Stevens, 21, of Chatham, N.J.

All arrested were ordered to face preliminary hearing in Municipal Court Wednesday morning.

Negroes arrested here included Lafayette A. Cook Jr., whose father is principal of a Negro elementary school in Winston-Salem, and Carl W. Matthews, leader of the group and the first sit-down demonstrator here, the UPI said.

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