Medgar Evers was born near Decater, Mississippi in 1925, and lived there until he was inducted into the Army in 1943. He married in 1951, and he and his wife Myrlie helped to establish local chapters of the NAACP throughout the Mississippi Delta.

He became the NAACP’s first full time state field secretary in 1954, monitoring, collecting and publicizing data concerning civil rights violations. Despite threats to his life, he continued working toward equal rights for all.

Tragically, his life was cut short when he was gunned down the in the driveway of his Jackson home in June of 1963. The accused killer, a white supremacist named Byron De La Beckwith, stood trial twice in the 1960s, but in both cases the all-white juries could not reach a verdict. In 1994, he was tried for a third time – was convicted – and was sentenced to life in prison. De La Beckwith died in prison in 2001.


On Tuesday February 7 at Thalia Mara Hall in Jackson, Mississippi, the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra along with the Mississippi Mass Choir, the Mississippi Girlchoir and CBS News Correspondent Randall Pinkston presented A Concert in Tribute to Medgar Evers. Mississippi Public Broadcasting recorded the concert and produced an hour long radio special from it. This webpage was created as a companion to the radio program, providing additional information about Evers’ life and work.