Gruesome images of a lynched Emmett Till were seared into the minds of many black Americans in 1955 and helped lead to the modern civil rights movement. But few whites knew of their existence at the time.
That reality is at the top of NBC’s two-hour documentary about how images propelled the civil rights effort. The film premieres Saturday at 8 p.m. ET as the 50th anniversary of the Rev. Martin Luther King’s assassination approaches.
Till was the 14-year-old black Chicago boy visiting relatives in Mississippi, killed after a white grocery store clerk claimed he treated her rudely. Decades later, she recanted her story. That was far too late to save Till from being bludgeoned, shot in the head and thrown into a river. Two men were acquitted of the crime, even though they later admitted to it.
Given a casket nailed shut, Till’s mother ordered it open and Jet magazine took pictures of his horrible maimed head, beaten beyond recognition.
CLICK HERE to read story