Civil Rights Advocate Fought for Desegregation, End of Slums

By Clemmons, Liz | Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), July 11, 2006 | Go to article overview

Civil Rights Advocate Fought for Desegregation, End of Slums


Clemmons, Liz, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)


Byline: Liz Clemmons Daily Herald Correspondent

Theresa Palmer ~ 1925-2006

Theresa Palmer believed in the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.' s vision of racial equality and worked for that cause.

As a member of the board of directors of the Catholic Interracial Council in the mid-1960s, Mrs. Palmer helped spearhead King's visit to Chicago and was instrumental in organizing a dinner for the civil rights leader.

After listening to several civil rights groups, King and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference took on the fight against segregation in the Chicago public schools. The result was the Chicago Freedom Movement, the aim of which was to end slums in the city. To call attention to the issue, Dr. King was involved in two marches into all-white neighborhoods during the summer of 1966.

Mrs. Palmer and her late husband, Dr. John Palmer, took part in several marches throughout the 1960s in Chicago.

"She believed in what Dr. King was doing. She believed in integration and in blacks and whites coming together," said Mrs. Palmer's daughter, Leslie Adkins.

Mrs. Palmer died July 3 in Washington, D.C. She was 81.

Also as a board member of the Catholic Interracial Council, Mrs. …

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Civil Rights Advocate Fought for Desegregation, End of Slums
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