FBI Investigation File, Communist Infiltration of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference

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Overview

This file documents the FBI’s investigation of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), which was organized in 1957 in Atlanta, with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as president. The group went on to stage many peaceful demonstrations against segregation in schools, restaurants, and hotels, and against other violations of civil rights in the south.

From 1958 through 1980, the FBI compiled a file of over 13,000 pages on the SCLC. The rationale for this long-term investigation was, in the bureau’s words, "to ascertain the degree of Communist party influence on the SCLC." This file contains all the investigative reports on the SCLC, its leaders, and suspected Communist connections.

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