Furman University Oral Histories
Cleveland Sellers Oral History

Streaming Media


Cleveland Sellers Oral History


Video interview, and oral history of Cleveland Sellers, American educator and veteran civil rights activist. The video begins with Mr. Sellers showing historical photographs of himself and other prominent figures during the Civil Rights Movement. He then speaks of his life in Denmark, SC, during the 1940's and 50's, and what it was like for a young African American there in that time. Mr. Sellers proceeds to discuss the transition from segregation to integration, and the effects on the African American community. He talks about becoming a young activist and working with older activists in the 1960's, and discusses sit-ins, Birmingham, and Mississippi. Topics discussed are the SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee), the responsibilities of being a leader in the Civil Rights Movement, the feeling of family among activists, women leaders and the role of sex and gender in the movement. Mr. Sellers also talks about the financial hardship of activism, training organizers, the dangers of the movement, and the safety precautions and procedures they used. He ends the interview talking about his transition from civil rights activist to an educator, teaching young people of different races and attitudes in the present day, and his teaching style. In this interview Mr. Sellers speaks of Septima Poinsette Clark and also Stokely Carmichael.

Scholarship Type

Faculty Scholarship

Publication Date


City and State

Greenville (S.C.)


Oral histories; Sellers, Cleveland, 1944-; Segregation; Civil rights workers; Civil rights United States History; Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (U.S.)




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Cleveland Sellers Oral History