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The Port Chicago 50 - Hard Labor – Epilogue: Civil Rights Heroes Summary & Analysis

Steve Sheinkin
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Summary

Hard Labor – Cyril Sheppard and the others were horrified and devastated by the guilty verdict. Small was shaken by the news, but not surprised, having expected the outcome as it was from the beginning. All 50 men were sentenced to 15 years of hard labor. Many of the men began to cry, while others were too stunned to say anything. The 50 were then handcuffed and taken to the Naval Disciplinary Barracks at Terminal Island in Southern California. Small knew everything has been rigged.

The men knew their future rested with Thurgood Marshall. Marshall wrote directly to Forrestal about the situation, ranging from why only blacks were loading ammunition to the case itself. Forrestal privately knew that segregation was a major aggravation for the Navy, and an unnecessary one. Integration had already begun on board ships, and the mixed crews got along...

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This section contains 1,446 words
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