Oral History

Carlton Eversley - On his family, church, and participation in civil service organizations

Interviewed by Rob Stephens on March 27, 2007

"When we have these race conversations there’s this sort of false view, you know, that it’s 'tit for tat,' it’s even steven, that if a Black man says, 'I want Black power,' and a white man says, 'I want white power,' that it’s the same thing. It is not."

- Carlton Eversley

This interview highlights the church’s role in Carlton Eversley’s involvement in social justice initiatives in the Winston-Salem community, specifically the 1985 Darryl Hunt murder case. As a prominent member in the community with many connections to community organizations through his status as a preacher, Eversley agreed to help raise money for a private investigator in efforts to “even the playing field” for Hunt during his trial. Throughout his interview, Eversley addresses key details of Hunt’s case that identify the systematic racial injustices preventing Hunt from a fair trial that ultimately led to the imprisonment of an innocent man. Additionally, this interview discusses more of Eversley’s personal relationship with the Winston-Salem community and how his involvement in the church allowed him to challenge institutional racism and hold others accountable in the fight for racial justice.

Also included are a detailed history and depiction of the Eversley family life, Eversley’s participation in civil service organizations from high school into adulthood, and the church’s role in Eversley’s participation in social service/social justice initiatives. Other important topics include: paternal grandmother’s role in his religious learning and interactions with her, racism and division while in high school; father’s political involvement; the projects and gang violence; father and the Boy Scouts and sports; Bedford - Stuyvesant ghetto; pivotal preachers who influenced his drive to become a pastor; college years working for at minority recruitment, South Africa, and affirmative action at Oberlin College; experience as head of the black student association and chair of the student finance committee and learning how to do community organizing; Garrett Evangelical Church and views on black scholarship ; life in Chicago working as a chaplain in the Air Force ; learning from Henry Young; influences by Howard Thurman. Carlton’s pastoral work in Winston-Salem and political organizing with other ministers in North Carolina; views on Dr. King and Obama; and leaders of Black community round table service organization

Carlton Eversley - On his family, church, and participation in civil service organizations

Oral history interview of Eversley, Carlton conducted by Stephens, Rob on March 27, 2007 at Winston Salem, NC. Processed by Kleber, Selena.

Citation: Marian Cheek Jackson Center, “Carlton Eversley - On his family, church, and participation in civil service organizations,” From the Rock Wall, accessed April 18, 2024, https://fromtherockwall.org/oral-histories/carlton-eversley-3.

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