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Oral Histories
Interviews with Sam H. Bowers, Jr.

Sam H. Bowers, Jr., was convicted in 1998 for his role in the 1966 firebombing death of Mississippi civil rights activist Vernon Dahmer. Bowers died November 6, 2006, in the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman.

The Mississippi Department of Archives and History conducted three interviews with Bowers, on October 24, 1983, at MDAH; on January 30, 1984, in Florence, Mississippi; and on November 5, 1984, at MDAH.

Select from the links below to listen to audio recordings of the interviews, view transcripts, and view a handwritten manuscript submitted by Bowers on December 9, 1984, in which he clarifies his answer to the "Philosopher-King" question in an earlier interview. Neither the audio recordings nor the transcripts offer a complete version of the interviews. Sentences missing from the recordings appear in the transcripts, and a few segments of audio were omitted from the transcripts. The transcripts also reflect changes requested by Bowers, such as the consistent substitution of "rebel" for "Bolshevik."