Arrest photo of young activist Bernie Sanders emerges from Tribune archives
Chicago police officers carry protester Bernie Sanders, 21, in August 1963 to a police wagon from a civil rights demonstration at West 73rd Street and South Lowe Avenue. He was arrested, charged with resisting arrest, found guilty and fined $25. He was a University of Chicago student at the time.(Tom Kinahan / Chicago Tribune)
A man and woman hold hands as they are surrounded by Chicago police officers during a protest at 74th Street and Lowe Avenue in Chicago on Aug. 2, 1963. The protesters were against mobile classrooms, known derisively as Willis Wagons, being brought to Englewood.(Steve Marino / Chicago Tribune)
While Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) members picket, police guard mobile school units at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in Chicago on Aug. 13, 1963.(Al Phillips / Chicago Tribune)
A woman holds onto a child as they are carried by Chicago police officers during a protest at 74th Street and Lowe Avenue on Aug. 2, 1963. The protesters were against mobile classrooms being brought to Englewood.(Steve Marino / Chicago Tribune)
Clergymen join the picket line at a mobile classroom site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhod Aug. 15, 1963.(Ed Wagner Sr. / Chicago Tribune)
Chicago police officers carry a protester to a police wagon from the mobile classroom site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood Aug. 13, 1963.(Tom Kinahan / Chicago Tribune)
People protest at 74th Street and Lowe Avenue on Aug. 2, 1963, in Chicago. The protesters were expressing their anger over mobile classrooms being brought into Englewood to accommodate black students instead the city integrating those students into nearby white schools.(Steve Marino / Chicago Tribune)
Chicago police officers stare at Wayne Yancey and Sibylle Bearskin as they perch atop telephone poles after climbing ladders unattended by workmen during a protest Aug. 13, 1963, at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in Chicago.(Al Phillips / Chicago Tribune)
A child holds onto a woman as they are surrounded by Chicago police officers during a protest at 74th Street and Lowe Avenue on Aug. 2, 1963. The protesters were fighting for desegregated schools.(Steve Marino / Chicago Tribune)
Chicago police officers arrest two protesters as they demonstrate at a mobile classroom site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue on Aug. 13, 1963.(Tom Kinahan / Chicago Tribune)
CORE demonstrators gather and wait for the construction to begin at an empty lot Aug. 5, 1963, at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue. The Board of Education intended to install mobile classrooms to accommodate black students instead of integrating them in white schools.(Joe Mastruzzo / Chicago Tribune)
Demonstrators, chained together are carried to a patrol wagon by Chicago police officers on Aug. 13, 1963, at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in the Englewood neighborhood. The group was protesting school segregation.(George Quinn / Chicago Tribune)
Children, parents and clergymen picket a mobile classroom site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in Chicago on Aug. 15, 1963.(Ed Wagner Sr. / Chicago Tribune)
Congress of Racial Equality leader Charles Smith, second from left, and Parent Committee President Rosie Simpson, second from right, seek permission from Chicago police Capt. William McCann, right, to hold a prayer meeting at a mobile school site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue on Aug, 16, 1963. McCann told them they would need a permit from the Chicago Board of Education, and when none was issued, they held a kneel-in anyway.(George Quinn / Chicago Tribune)
People picket the use of mobile classrooms Sept. 3, 1963, that were placed next to Guggenheim Elementary School at 7146 S. Sangamon St. in Chicago.(Al Phillips / Chicago Tribune)
A young girl holds rosary beads at the mobile classroom site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in the Englewood neighborhood of Chicago on Aug. 15, 1963.(Ed Wagner Sr. / Chicago Tribune)
A young man turns to shout at policemen forcing him into patrol wagon at the scene of a South Side disturbance prompted by the arrival of mobile classrooms on Aug. 12, 1963. The demonstrators had previously been lying in front of trucks and cars trying to enter the school construction site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue in the Englewood neighborhood.(John Bartley / Chicago Tribune)
One of the demonstrators who was lying in front of a truck yells and kicks while police officers take him to a patrol wagon at the mobile classroom site at 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue on Aug. 12, 1963.(John Bartley / Chicago Tribune)
Rosie Simpson, president of the 71st and Stewart group, shows the 1,300 signatures on a petition pertaining to segregated schools at the mayor’s office Aug. 20, 1963.(Tom Kinahan / Chicago Tribune)
Luberda Bailey, head of the 71st and Sangamon Block Club, leads children from Guggenheim Elementary School to the Freedom School held in the basement at New Friendship Baptist Church on Oct. 22, 1963. The students boycotted their regular school as a protest against segregated schools in Chicago.(Tom Kinahan / Chicago Tribune)
Student teacher Cheryl Warren and the Rev. John R. Porter teach students from Beale, Lowe and Kershaw schools at a Freedom School at 64th and Sangamon streets during a boycott of their regular schools Oct. 22, 1963.(Frank Berger / Chicago Tribune)
A Chicago Tribune archival photo of a young man being arrested in 1963 at a South Side protest is Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, his campaign has confirmed, bolstering the candidate’s narrative about his civil rights activism.
The black-and-white photo shows a 21-year-old Sanders, then a University of Chicago student, being taken by Chicago police toward a police wagon. An acetate negative of the photo was found in the Tribune’s archives, said Marianne Mather, a Chicago Tribune photo editor.
“Bernie identified it himself,” said Tad Devine, a senior adviser to the campaign, adding that Sanders looked at a digital image of the photo. “He looked at it — he actually has his student ID from the University of Chicago in his wallet — and he said, ‘Yes, that indeed is (me).’” Sanders, a U.S. senator from Vermont, was traveling Friday near Reno, Nev., on the eve of the state’s Democratic presidential caucuses.
Sanders’ activism at the University of Chicago has been in the news recently, after questions arose about a different photo that appeared to show Sanders addressing students at a 1962 campus sit-in. At first, several alumni identified the speaker as another man, according to the University of Chicago Library’s Special Research Center. The other man is no longer alive.
However, photographer Danny Lyon, who took that photo, contacted the research center and made available more photos from the same sequence, confirming Sanders’ identity, the center said.
Devine called those questions about the sit-in photo “unfair and unfounded.”
“His activism and when it occurred, as a young college student, set in motion the direction of his life,” Devine said.
Information with the negative indicated that the Tribune arrest photo was taken in August 1963 near South 73rd Street and Lowe Avenue, which is in the Englewood neighborhood.
In the mid-1960s, protests over segregation in the area raged over mobile classrooms dubbed “Willis Wagons,” named for then-Chicago Schools Superintendent Benjamin Willis. The phrase “Willis Wagons” was believed to have been coined in 1963 by Rosie Simpson, a leader in education reform in Chicago. She was describing the trailers that Willis set up for black children instead of sending them to white schools.
Sanders was arrested Aug. 12, 1963, and charged with resisting arrest. He was found guilty and fined $25, according to a Tribune story about the protests.
Sanders graduated from the University of Chicago in 1964. He transferred there in January 1962 after studying at Brooklyn College, according to a story in the University of Chicago magazine.
At the University of Chicago, he was a leader of the Congress of Racial Equality, a major civil rights group. News accounts from the time had Sanders leading protests over racial inequality.
Twitter @Katherine Skiba
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