the Highlander Research and Education Center


The Highlander Research and Education Center, formerly known as the Highlander Folk School, is a social justice leadership training school and cultural center in New Market, Tennessee.

Highlander Research & Education Center - Folk Alliance International Lifetime Achievement Award 2012 by FolkAlliance


Founded in 1932 by activist Myles Horton, educator Don West, and Methodist minister James A. Dombrowski, it was originally located in the community of Summerfield in Grundy County, Tennessee, between Monteagle and Tracy City.

Methodism, or the Methodist movement, is a group of historically related denominations of Protestant Christianity which derive their inspiration from the life and teachings of John Wesley.

Not to be confused with the Canadian hockey player Miles G.'

Pete Seeger on Highlander's 75th Anniversary by highlandercenter


It was featured in the 1985 documentary film, You Got to Move.

You Got to Move is a 1985 documentary by Lucie Massie Phenix and Veronica Selver that follows people from communities in the Southern United States in their various processes of becoming involved in social change.


Much of the history was documented in the book Or We'll All Hang Separately: The Highlander Idea by Thomas Bledsoe.


Highlander provides training and education for emerging and existing movement leaders throughout the South, Appalachia, and the world.

Appalachia is a cultural region in the Eastern United States that stretches from the Southern Tier of New York to northern Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia.


Some of Highlander's earliest contributions were during the labor movement in Appalachia and throughout the Southern United States.

The labour movement or labor movement consists of two main wings, the trade union movement or labor union movement, also called trade unionism or labor unionism on the one hand, and the political labour movement on the other.

The Southern United States, commonly referred to as the American South, Dixie, or simply the South, is a region of the United States of America.


During the 1950s, it played a critical role in the American Civil Rights Movement.

The Civil Rights Movement was a human rights movement from 1954–1968 that encompassed strategies, groups, and social movements to accomplish its goal of ending legalized racial segregation and discrimination laws in the United States.


It trained civil rights leader Rosa Parks prior to her historic role in the Montgomery Bus Boycott, as well as providing training for many other movement activists, including members of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, Septima Clark, Anne Braden, Martin Luther King, Jr., James Bevel, Hollis Watkins, Bernard Lafayette, Ralph Abernathy and John Lewis in the mid- and-late 1950s.

Martin Luther King Jr. was an American Baptist minister and activist who became the most visible spokesperson and leader in the civil rights movement from 1954 through 1968.

The Montgomery bus boycott was a political and social protest campaign against the policy of racial segregation on the public transit system of Montgomery, Alabama.

Civil and political rights are a class of rights that protect individuals' freedom from infringement by governments, social organizations, and private individuals.


Backlash against the school's involvement with the Civil Rights Movement led to the school's closure by the state of Tennessee in 1961.


Staff reorganized and moved to Knoxville, Tennessee, where they rechartered Highlander under the name "Highlander Research and Education Center."

Knoxville is a city in the U.S. state of Tennessee, and the county seat of Knox County.


Highlander has been in its current home in New Market, Tennessee, since 1971.


Highlander's archives reside at the Wisconsin Historical Society and the Louis Round Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The Wisconsin Historical Society is simultaneously a state agency and a private membership organization whose purpose is to maintain, promote and spread knowledge relating to the history of North America, with an emphasis on the state of Wisconsin and the trans-Allegheny West.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, also known as UNC, or simply Carolina, is a public research university located in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States.

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