Great Black Men in HistoryStaying informed is half the battle...

Fred Hampton
Fred Hampton Fred Hampton


An African-American activist and deputy chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party (BPP) He was killed while sleeping in his apartment during a raid by a tactical unit of the Cook County, Illinois State’s Attorney’s Office (SAO), in conjunction with the Chicago Police Department (CPD) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Hampton’s death was chronicled in the 1971 documentary film The Murder of Fred Hampton, as well as an episode of the critically acclaimed documentary series Eyes on the Prize To members of Chicago's African American community in the late 1960s, no leader was more inspiring, more articulate, or more effective than Fred Hampton He organized food pantries, educational programs, and recreational outlets for impoverished children, and he helped bring about a peaceful coexistence among the city's rival street gangs To civic leaders in Chicago, the FBI, and many others, however, he was a dangerous revolutionary leader, committed to the violent overthrow of the white-dominated system Hampton was killed in a 1969 raid on the headquarters of the Illinois Chapter of the Black Panther party, in what was almost certainly a planned assassination orchestrated by Federal agents and city leaders, who feared that Hampton's influence could lead to an all-out armed uprising by the city's most disenfranchised residents Hampton was born in 1948 in Chicago, and grew up in Maywood, a suburb just to the west of the city His parents had moved north from Louisiana, and both held jobs at the Argo Starch Company As a youth, Hampton was gifted both in the classroom and on the athletic field.

To those who knew him, he seemed a likely candidate to escape the ghetto and "make it" in the white-dominated world outside At Proviso East High School in Maywood, Hampton earned three varsity letters and won a Junior Achievement Award He graduated with honors in 1966 Following his graduation, Hampton enrolled at Triton Junior College in nearby River Grove, Illinois, majoring in pre-law He also became active in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), assuming leadership of the Youth Council of the organization's West Suburban Branch In his capacity as an NAACP youth organizer, Hampton began to show signs of his natural leadership ability From a community of 27,000, he was able to muster a youth group 500-members strong, an impressive size even for a constituency twice as large Hampton considered it his mission to create a better environment for the development of young African Americans He worked to get more and better recreational facilities established in the neighborhoods, and to improve educational resources for Maywood's African American community Through his involvement with the NAACP, Hampton hoped to achieve social change through nonviolent activism and community organizing.

At about the same time that Hampton was successfully organizing young African Americans for the NAACP, the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense started rising to national prominence Hampton was quickly attracted to the Black Panther approach, which was based on a ten-point program of African American self-determination Hampton joined the Black Panther Party and relocated to downtown Chicago, where he launched the party's Illinois chapter in November of 1968 Over the next year, Hampton and his associates recorded a number of significant achievements in Chicago Perhaps his most important accomplishment was his brokering of a nonaggression pact between Chicago's most powerful street gangs By emphasizing that racial and ethnic conflict between gangs would only keep its members entrenched in poverty, he was able to forge a class-conscious, multiracial alliance of black, Puerto Rican, and poor white youths In May of 1969, Hampton called a press conference to announce that a truce had been declared among this "rainbow coalition," a phrase coined by Hampton and made popular over the years by Rev Jesse Jackson Equally important was Hampton's work as a developer of community service programs His leadership helped create a program that provided free breakfasts for schoolchildren, a program the Panters had initiated in several cities.

Hampton was also instrumental in the establishment of a free medical clinic, and other programs accessible to poor African Americans By the tender age of 20, Hampton had become a respected community leader among Chicago's black population Meanwhile, Hampton was growing more militant in his political views One factor in the increasing intensity of his rhetoric was his 1969 arrest for the strong-arm theft of $71 worth of Good Humor bars, which he then allegedly gave away to neighborhood children Hampton was initially convicted and sentenced to two to five years in prison before the decision was overturned He came away from the experience with a reinforced distrust of the American legal system, and a renewed conviction that it must be completely overhauled Although he was still more of an organizer than a revolutionary, Hampton's commitment to non-violence seemed to weaken He began carrying guns, and, in a 1969 interview with the Chicago Sun-Times, openly declared that "I'm not afraid to say I'm at war with the pigs" Still, his position on violence was that it was necessary for self-defense; African Americans needed to protect themselves against the brutal tactics of the police and other white-dominated institutions "What this country has done to nonviolent leaders like Martin Luther King--I think that objectively says there's going to have to be an armed struggle," he was quoted as saying in the Sun-Times article.

By all accounts, Hampton was one of the most articulate and persuasive African American leaders of his time His quiet demeanor and restrained speaking style belied the abrasive image most people attached to the Black Panthers The Rev Thomas Strieter, a member of the Maywood village board who knew Hampton from his earliest days as an organizer, was quoted in a 1994 Chicago magazine article as saying that Hampton "had charm coming out his ears My impression of the Black Panthers in Oakland (California) was that they were thugs Fred was not a thug" Former Chicago corporation counsel James Montgomery called him "one of the most persuasive speakers I've ever heard" Dr Quentin Young, a member of Chicago Mayor Harold Washington's inner circle, went even further "He (Hampton) was a giant, and this is not some idle white worship of a black man," he was quoted in Chicago as saying "This is a terrible way to put it, but the people who made it their business to kill the leaders of the black movement picked the right ones".

Indeed, while Hampton impressed many of the people with whom he came into contact as a great leader and talented communicator, those very qualities marked him as a major threat in the eyes of the FBI and other concerned agencies The FBI began keeping close tabs on his activities, and subsequent investigations have shown that FBI chief J Edgar Hoover was determined to prevent the formation of a cohesive Black radical movement in the United States Hoover saw the Panthers, and gang coalitions like that forged by Hampton in Chicago, as frightening stepping stones toward the creation of just such a revolutionary body Urged on by the FBI, the Chicago police launched an all-out assault on the Black Panthers and their allies, characterizing the group as nothing more than a criminal gang Over the course of the escalating conflict in 1969, eleven black youths from Chicago's South Side were killed in separate skirmishes with police During that year alone, shoot-outs killed or wounded a dozen Panther members and almost as many police officers Over 100 Black Panthers were arrested during the year, and Panther party headquarters at 2337 West Monroe Street on the city's West Side were raided by police and FBI agents four separate times The last of these four raids was the one in which Hampton was killed One of the individuals who spent a lot of time at Panther headquarters in Chicago was William O'Neal.

It turned out that O'Neal, a convicted car thief, had been recruited out of the county jail to be a paid informant for the FBI One of O'Neal's chief contributions to the FBI's infiltration of the Black Panthers was to provide them with a floor plan of the building O'Neal's information was key to the December 4, 1969, police raid that killed Hampton and fellow party member Mark Clark Four other Panthers were seriously injured Chicago Police entered the building at 4:45 in the morning The police version of the raid claimed that the Panthers began firing guns at them the moment they began knocking on the door According to this version of events, a ten-minute shootout ensued, resulting in the deaths of Hampton and Clark Subsequent investigations suggest otherwise; it is likely, in fact, that the raid more closely resembled an execution than a legitimate police action For example, ballistic evidence showed that at most one shot could have been fired by a Panther The police did virtually all of the shooting that took place.

Hampton died in bed There is strong evidence that he had been drugged that night, probably by O'Neal, and it is likely that he slept through the entire ordeal Hampton's funeral was attended by 5,000 people, and he was eulogized by such black leaders as Jesse Jackson and Ralph Abernathy, Martin Luther King's successor as head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference In his eulogy, Jackson noted that "when Fred was shot in Chicago, black people in particular, and decent people in general, bled everywhere" The officers involved in the raid were cleared by a grand jury of any crimes The families of Hampton and Clark filed a $477 million civil suit against the city, state, and federal governments More than a decade later, the suit was finally settled, and the two families each received a large but undisclosed sum In 1990, the Chicago City Council passed a resolution declaring "Fred Hampton Day" in honor of the slain leader Since Hampton's death, the Black Panthers have faded from the limelight, thanks in large part to the concentrated efforts of the FBI and various other police agencies.

Hampton's memory lives on, however, in part due to a scholarship fund set up in his name by Jackson and Abernathy Education may be a less dramatic path to social change than armed revolt, but Hampton's idea of revolution was broad enough to include it As Hampton often said, according to The Nation, "You can kill a revolutionary, but you cannot kill a revolution You can jail a liberation fighter, but you cannot jail liberation" .

Fred Hampton Documentary
Fred Hampton Documentary.
Watch Video
Fred Hampton - On The Importance Of Education Prior To Action
Hampton founded the Chicago chapter of the Black Panther Party in November 1968 where he immediately established a community service program. This included the provision of free breakfasts...
Watch Video
Fred Hampton - Political Prisoner [1080p remastered]
Remastered the audio to the 1990s television broadcast standards for USA. Under these standards of the 90s: Audio shall not exceed levels of -6DB (Full Scale) for excessive periods of time....
Watch Video
The Assassination of Fred Hampton How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther 1 of 3
Today marks the fortieth anniversary of the death of Black Panther leader Fred Hampton. On December 4th, 1969, Chicago police raided Fred Hamptons apartment and shot and killed him in his bed....
Watch Video
Fred Hampton BPP Eyes on the Prize 12 A Nation of Law?, 1967 1968 2
Fred Hampton BPP Infiltration.
Watch Video
Fred Hampton on solidarity and why the Black Panther Party was targeted
In this clip from "The Murder of Fred Hampton," Fred Hampton participates in a mock people's trial. In it, he articulates why the Black Panther Party, and he as a leader within the party,...
Watch Video
The Murder of Fred Hampton - 1971 - Black Panther Party - Black Lives Matter - COINTELPRO
The Murder of Fred Hampton is a 1971 documentary film which began with the intention of portraying Fred Hampton and the Illinois Black Panther Party. During the film's production, Hampton...
Watch Video
The Assassination of Fred Hampton: How the FBI and Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther
Click here to join the movement by supporting this channel and receive rewards when you make a pledge. Your pledge means I don't have to worry about blocked ads, and getting...
Watch Video
Fred Hampton: Not About Race
Not About Race.
Watch Video
Fred Hampton Sr and Bobby Rush Interview Part 1
This is an interview featuring Fred Hampton Senior and Bobby Rush explaining how the Panthers fought fascist capitalism being used to destroy the Black Community with progressive organized Socialism!
Watch Video
*Must Watch | Chairman Fred Hampton Jr. Talks War, Government, & Truth | Shot By @TheRealZacktv1
Watch Video
Fred Hampton - Guns
"You can jail a revolutionary, but you can't jail the Revolution" "You can murder a freedom fighter but you can't murder Freedom Fight"
Watch Video
Fred Hampton Speech: Why dont you die for the people
Final scene from: "The Murder of Fred Hampton" (1971) == Transcript == If you ever think about me, and if you think about me niggers, and if you...
Watch Video
The Assassination of Fred Hampton How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther 2 of 3
"The Assassination of Fred Hampton: How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther" Today marks the fortieth anniversary of the death of Black Panther leader Fred Hampton. On...
Watch Video
Fred Hampton: You Can Jail A Revolutionary, But You Cant Jail A Revolution
Outtake from the 1971 documentary film 'The Murder of Fred Hampton', featuring an excerpt from a speech by Brother Fred Hampton, in which he emphasizes his political views and priorities. Brother...
Watch Video
WATCH: Black Panther Party Activist Fred Hamptons 1960s Speech On Race & Class
Majority Report Contributor Michael Brooks is hosting the show today. In this clip, we watch activist Fred Hampton, chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party and deputy chairman...
Watch Video
Fred Hampton Interview Part 5
Videofreex interviewed Black Panther Party Chairman, Fred Hampton in Chicago in 1969 while covering the Conspiracy Trials. In this segment, Hampton is asked about the possibility that he could...
Watch Video
When A Black Panthers Informant Got Fred Hampton Killed
Follow our platform, which promotes economic, social & racial equity: --------------- Follow our social media: Facebook:
Watch Video
Black Panther Party On Leadership & Assassination With Comrade Chairman Fred Hampton, Sr.
LINKS to official BPP pages are in the description below. *** The Black Panther Communist Party For Self-Defense (BPP) (1966-1982) #Illinois Chapter Chairman Fred Hampton, Sr. discusses...
Watch Video
Fred Hampton....A True Revolutionary
We want to create content MORE FREQUENTLY and keep this information FREE TO THE PUBLIC/MASSES. You can help make that possible with as little as $5 per month. CLICK ON THE LINK and help us...
Watch Video

More Video