Charles Bolton on Tour

Referred to by President Bill Clinton as “one of the great, unsung civil rights heroes of our age, and one of the finest men I know” William F. Winter lived a remarkable life in service to the public. For more than six decades, Winter (b. 1923) has been one of the most recognizable public figures in Mississippi. 

The first biography of this pivotal figure, William F. Winter and the New Mississippi is available from UPM. The book traces Winter’s life and influences from his boyhood days in Grenada County through his service in World War II through his long career in public service. Author Charles C. Bolton shines new light on one of Mississippi’s best known and least understood public policy heroes.
Winter's political career spanned the 1940s through the early 1980s, from his initial foray into Mississippi politics as James Eastland’s driver during his 1942 campaign for the United States Senate, as state legislator, as state tax collector, as state treasurer, and as lieutenant governor. Finally, Winter served as governor of the state of Mississippi from 1980 to 1984. 

During the tumultuous civil rights battles that dominated Mississippi life in the post–World War II decades, Winter was a voice of reason and compromise. He represented the earliest embodiment in Mississippi of the white moderate political leadership that emerged throughout the “New South” in the aftermath of the civil rights reforms of the mid-1960s. His leadership played a pivotal role in ushering in the New Mississippi: a society that moved beyond the racial caste system that had defined life in the state for almost a century. 

Winter has remained active in public life in the years since retiring from politics. During the last twenty-five years, Winter has worked with a variety of organizations to champion the issues that have always been central to his vision of how to advance the interests of his native state and the South as a whole: improving the economy, upgrading the educational system, and facilitating racial reconciliation.

William F. Winter and the New Mississippi serves as a testament to one of Mississippi’s greatest leaders and one of the most important politicians in twentieth-century. 

Charles Bolton will be talking about and signing copies of his book at the following times and locations: