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FBI File on the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee

Location: Microfilm E 185.61 F355


The FBI maintained a file on the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) because Communists were believed to be infiltrating its leadership. This file is comprised of field reports from nineteen cities, including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and several others. The national offices of the SNCC were in Atlanta and represents the largest of the documents.

“The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) was organized in 1960 as a nonviolent civil rights movement devoted to direct-action, voter-registration campaigns for blacks in the Deep South. Comprised mostly of Southern black college students upon its inception, SNCC later attracted both black and white students into its membership. . .In 1965, SNCC shifted its emphasis from civil and voting rights to the empowerment, both economic and political, that those rights bring.” From the introduction of the print guide to the collection

How to search the collection

The collection is contained on two rolls of microfilm and is accompanied by a print guide that includes “Roll Notes.” The material has been filmed in the order in which it was released from the FBI. The reports are organized by the reporting field office and then chronologically within the report.

According to the guide, each field report is organized as follows:
1) basis for investigation
2) address of SNCC chapter
3) characterization and membership
4) principal officers
5) activities
6) results of activities
7) appendix

The guide describes the appendices as “noteworthy” as they provide descriptions of related organizations that the FBI deemed important, such as the Nation of Islam, the Young Socialists, Students for a Democratic Society, Committee on Racial Inequality and others. The roll notes provide basic information; in most cases simply the originating city of the report and the dates that the field reports were made. Some additional information is provided in the notes to Section 1 and 2 of Roll 1.

You can also view this FBI file at http://foia.fbi.gov/foiaindex/sncc.htm in PDF format.


Guide to the Microfilm Edition of the FBI File on the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). Wilmington, Del. : Scholarly Resources, 1991. (Microfilm E 185.61 F355 1991 Guide)

For more information about this subject in our Library Catalog, check out these
Subject Categories:

Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (U.S.)

Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (U.S.) -- Biography

African Americans -- Civil rights -- History -- 20th century -- Sources.

Time Period: 20th Century  

Subject keywords: FBI Documents, African American Studies, Civil Rights