Lloyd Snook headshot

Lloyd Snook

Venable School, Lane High School

So in spring of 1968, that being the first year that Lane had been really fully integrated — Burley had closed down — and suddenly, a couple hundred, 300 or so Black students arrived.  And there was not a significant change in the faculty.  So a lot of the faculty, they were having to deal with, they were pretty old-line, white faculty members who didn’t really cotton too much to the idea of Black kids coming to the same classes.  So there were a lot of tensions right away.  We had a principal who had very little interest in reaching out and seeing that the tensions got eased.  And so by, I guess probably May, I’m thinking April or May of 1968, there was a walk-out.  And basically, most of, virtually all of the Black students and some white students walked out in the middle of the school day, and walked down to Henry Mitchell’s church at the corner of what was then the corner of Tenth and Grady Trinity Episcopal Church.  And Henry proceeded to talk them down from some of the anger that they were expressing, and then tried to turn that into a productive sense of engagement.  And that led ultimately to the formation of what I’ve called the Student Human Relations Committee.  It may have been called by some the Bi-Racial Committee or something, because it clearly was.  But at least what I had in mind, and what my parents had in mind when we were talking about it, was modeling it after the human relations committees that we -- that was sort of an accepted name for this kind of endeavor.  And that committee began meeting in the fall of ’68, my junior year.  And we ultimately, by November, I think it was the first or second week in November, we had what we called Unity Weekend.  And it involved a number of activities that took place at Saint Paul’s, because it was one place that we knew we could get.  And it was of some size.  And we had activities in the church and around the church, including a dance that was probably the first time anybody had, serious numbers of Blacks and white students had been at the same dance, dancing together.  And just little things like that that seemed to begin to make a difference.  We did, I remember one thing that we did was put out a glossary of, here are terms that folks, you just don’t use.  Here’s, don’t refer to somebody over the age of 12 as boy.  Just things like that that nowadays, we’ve sort of all intuited.  We’ve grown up with them.  But in 1968, that was news.