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The civil rights movement was just beginning to catch fire in Mississippi on the night in 1963 when white supremacist Byron De La Beckwith crouched in the honeysuckle across the street from NAACP leader Medgar Evers’s house and shot him in the back. Three trials and thirty years later, a jury convicted Beckwith of murder and sent him to prison for life, finally concluding one of the most rankling cases of the civil rights era.
In Ghosts of Mississippi, journalist Maryanne Vollers tells the inside story of that state’s struggle to confront the ghosts of its violent past in order to bring a killer to justice, weaving a compelling narrative that captures the journey from the old South to the new. Drawing on her rare access to prosecutors, Evers’s family, and Beckwith himself, Vollers re-creates the events of Evers’s life and death, while bringing to light new facts and insights into the assassination case and the conspiracy theories that surround it. The result is a thrilling tale of racism, murder, courage, redemption, and the ultimate triumph of justice.