Synopses & Reviews
No modern tragedy has had a greater impact on race relations in America than the kidnapping and murder of Emmett Till, the 14-year-old black boy from Chicago whose body was battered beyond recognition and dumped in the Tallahatchie River while visiting relatives in Money, Mississippi, in 1955. This grotesque crime became the catalyst for the civil rights movement. Simeon Wright saw and heard his cousin Emmett whistle at Caroline Bryant at a grocery store; he was sleeping in the same bed with him when her husband came in and took Emmett away; and he was at the sensational trial. Simeon’s Story tells what it was like to grow up in Mississippi in the 1940s; paints a vivid portrait of Moses Wright, Simeon’s father, a preacher who bravely testified against the killers; explains exactly what happened during Emmett’s visit to Mississippi, clearing up a number of common misperceptions; and shows how the Wright family lived in fear after the trial, and how they endured the years afterward. Simeon’s Story is the gripping coming-of-age memoir of a man who was deeply hurt by the horror of his cousin’s murder and, through prayer and hope, has come to believe that it’s now time to tell it like it was.
"It is my hope that [Simeon's Story] renews our efforts to deal with the nation's lingering inequities, particularly the hundreds of unsolved murder cases from the civil rights era." Rev. Al Sharpton, president, National Action Network
"Simeon's Story is one that must be heard and never forgotten. In simple, plain language, Wright describes an event that shocked the conscience of the nation and gave birth to the modern-day Civil Rights Movement in America." John Lewis, U.S. congressman
"Simeon's Story gets to the heart of the tragedy and, more importantly, dispels the lies, myths, and distortions that have obscured the truth." Keith Beauchamp, producer and director, The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till
"A book that should be read, a story that demands to be told." VOYA
Fascinating . . . there is much to learn here . . . . Simeon Wright is just the latest in a long line of writers who find the Emmett Till story compelling, but his perspective and proximity are critical to a full understanding.” Chicago Tribune
Crystal clarity and blistering prose. . . . [A] powerful, important memoir. Simeons Story is a story you must read.” Savannah Morning News
A modern tragedy, this story has had a great impact on race relations in America. Emmett Till's kidnapping and murder, a grotesque crime in a Southern backwater that became the catalyst for the civil rights movement, is explained in this dramatic narrative by the cousin who was present every step of the way. Simeon Wright saw and heard his cousin Emmett whistle at Caroline Bryant at a grocery store and slept in the same bed with him when her husband came in and took Emmett away; he was there during the aftermath of the murder, and at the trial, where his father testified. This gripping coming-of-age memoir may not bring closure to the Till case, whose perpetrators were left unpunished, but it will set the facts straight about that life-changing incident in 1955.
No modern tragedy has had a greater impact on race relations in America than the kidnapping and murder of Emmett Till. A 14-year-old black boy from Chicago visiting relatives in Mississippi in 1955, Till was taken from his uncles home by two white men; several days later, his body was found in the Tallahatchie River. This grotesque crime became the catalyst for the civil rights movement.
At age 12, author Simeon Wright saw and heard his cousin Emmett whistle at a white woman at a grocery store; he was sleeping in the same bed with him when Emmett was taken; and he was at the sensational trial. This is his gripping coming-of-age memoir.
About the Author
Simeon Wright is Emmett Till's cousin. A major figure in the documentary The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till, he has been profiled in the Washington Post and has appeared on Tavis Smiley and Court TV. Herb Boyd has published 18 books, including We Shall Overcome: The History of the Civil Rights Movement as It Happened, and is managing editor of the Black World Today.