“Rozier’s personal and family ties, that he says go back to the county’s founding in 1793, add an insight and compassion that an outside researcher could never achieve.”
John McCown was a black civil rights worker who achieved great political power and whose career, and life, ended in a swirl of controversy. In 1968, Georgia’s Hancock County became the first county in the United States since Reconstruction to come under black political control, in large part because of the charismatic leadership of McCown, who secured millions in grants from the Office of Economic Opportunity, the Ford Foundation, and the East Central Committee for Opportunity.
Eight years later, McCown’s regime ended with his dramatic death and indictments against McCown and his associates on various charges of defrauding the government. Black Boss details the rise and fall of McCown and the continuing effects of his abuse of power on the people of Hancock County. It is a story that Rozier says shows “the good and evil that dwell in us all.”
Read more about Hancock County at the New Georgia Encyclopedia.
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