Florida Senate - 2018                            (NP)    SR 1934
       By Senator Hukill
       14-02103E-18                                          20181934__
    1                          Senate Resolution                        
    2         A resolution recognizing December 15, 2018, as “Harry
    3         Tyson Moore and Harriette Vyda Simms Moore Day” in
    4         Florida.
    6         WHEREAS, Harry Tyson Moore, born on November 18, 1905, and
    7  his wife, Harriette Vyda Simms Moore, born on June 19, 1902,
    8  were educators and civil rights activists, and
    9         WHEREAS, in 1934, Harry Tyson Moore established the first
   10  Brevard County branch of the National Association for the
   11  Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and became its president,
   12  and
   13         WHEREAS, the couple traveled throughout the state
   14  organizing branches of the NAACP, and, in 1941, Harry Tyson
   15  Moore organized and became president of the NAACP Florida State
   16  Conference, and
   17         WHEREAS, in a quest for equal rights, Harry Tyson Moore
   18  investigated lynchings and police brutality, fought against laws
   19  obstructing people of color who sought to participate in our
   20  government by voting, and, in 1945, organized the Progressive
   21  Voters League, and
   22         WHEREAS, during this time, the Moores succeeded in
   23  increasing the registration of black voters in Florida to 31
   24  percent of those eligible to vote, markedly higher than in any
   25  other southern state, and
   26         WHEREAS, in July 1949, after four young black men were
   27  falsely accused of raping a white woman in Groveland, a white
   28  mob went on a rampage through Groveland’s black neighborhood,
   29  and the National Guard had to be called out to restore order,
   30  and
   31         WHEREAS, after uncovering evidence that the “Groveland
   32  Four” had been brutally beaten, Harry Tyson Moore publicly
   33  accused notorious Lake County Sheriff Willis McCall of
   34  orchestrating the beatings, and
   35         WHEREAS, on November 6, 1951, while Sheriff McCall was
   36  transporting two of the defendants, Walter Irvin and Sammy
   37  Shepherd, back to Lake County for a retrial hearing, he shot
   38  them, killing Shepherd and critically wounding Irvin, and
   39         WHEREAS, Harry Tyson Moore organized a campaign against
   40  what he saw as the wrongful convictions of the three surviving
   41  men and worked with attorney Thurgood Marshall to successfully
   42  appeal their convictions before the United States Supreme Court,
   43  and
   44         WHEREAS, on Christmas night 1951, the Moores’ home in Mims,
   45  Florida, was bombed, and Harry Tyson Moore died en route to a
   46  hospital in Sanford, while Harriette Vyda Simms Moore clung to
   47  life until after her husband’s funeral, and she died January 3,
   48  1952, and
   49         WHEREAS, the protests over the Moores’ deaths caused a
   50  nationwide reaction, with dozens of rallies and memorial
   51  meetings around the country, and President Truman and Florida
   52  Governor Fuller Warren were inundated with telegrams and protest
   53  letters, and
   54         WHEREAS, Harry Tyson Moore and Harriette Vyda Simms Moore
   55  were the first and only husband-and-wife civil rights activists
   56  to be murdered during the civil rights movement, and
   57         WHEREAS, Harry Tyson Moore and Harriette Vyda Simms Moore
   58  were inducted into the Florida Civil Rights Hall of Fame, and
   59  their bravery, sacrifice, and achievements are recognized in the
   60  Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and
   61  Culture, and
   62         WHEREAS, the legacy of Harry Tyson Moore and Harriette Vyda
   63  Simms Moore is honored at Harry T. and Harriette V. Moore
   64  Memorial Park, located at their homesite in Mims, Florida,
   65  through the implementation of community outreach programs and
   66  educational exhibits located inside the museum dedicated to the
   67  couple and their sacrifice, NOW, THEREFORE,
   69  Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of Florida:
   71         That December 15, 2018, is recognized as “Harry Tyson Moore
   72  and Harriette Vyda Simms Moore Day” in Florida.