At 1 p.m., a group of white men gathered at the Greyhound bus station on Anniston’s Gurnee Avenue, blocking the bus’ path and causing trouble. Some of the men yelled “Dirty Communists!” and racial epithets at the bus.
By 2 p.m., a mob had attacked the Greyound bus on Alabama 202 and set it on fire. “Oh my God, they’re going to burn us up!” passenger Genevieve Hughes said. All aboard the bus escaped, though several needed assistance on the side of the road. Twelve people were hospitalized for smoke inhalation.
In new proceedings two months later in Birmingham, the defense claimed “there was no legal evidence” against the accused. Five defendants changed their pleas to “no contest” and received probation. A sixth was sentenced to a year and a day in jail, though he was already jailed on another charge.
What follows are a series of photocopied images provided to The Star by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The black-and-white, low-resolution images from the FBI — many of which have never been published — reminded us of a graphic novel, one that tells part of an important story in the history of civil rights.