Former Gov. Ross Barnett of Mississippi, whose resistance to racial desegregation at the University of Mississippi thrust him into the national spotlight in the early 1960's, died Nov. 6 in Jackson at the age of 89.
The one-term Governor drew the wrath of President John F. Kennedy in 1962 when he fought a federal court order granting black students the right to enroll in the all-white institution.
Despite the presence of federal marshals, two people were killed and hundreds were injured in rioting at the university's campus in Oxford after James F. Meredith, a black veteran of the U.S. Air Force, attempted to register for classes.
Governor Barnett relented and allowed Mr. Meredith to enroll following the personal intervention of President Kennedy.
After the expiration of his term in 1964, Mr. Barnett practiced law. He attempted a political comeback, but was soundly defeated in the 1967 gubernatorial primary.
Vol. 07, Issue 11