It’s a good article. Goes into what happened years later, when Elizabeth and Hazel meet again.
Three young girls, barely into their teens, fell in directly behind Elizabeth. They were clearly together, and clearly students; two of them, like Elizabeth, carried books. They wanted to be at the very centre of things. And they wanted to get really close to Elizabeth – close enough to let her know that they didn’t want her in their school. “Two, four, six, eight! We don’t want to integrate!” they chanted.
One girl, Hazel Bryan, looked livid, her face poisoned with hate. As Benjamin Fine of The New York Times later described her, she was “screaming, just hysterical, just like one of these Elvis Presley hysterical deals, where these kids are fainting with hysteria”. Her eyes narrowed, her brow furrowed, her teeth clenched, Hazel shouted: “Go home, nigger! Go back to A-”. Click. “-frica!” Will Counts, a photographer for the Arkansas Democrat, had his picture.
When it comes down to it, Counts’s famous photograph of Elizabeth Eckford is really more of Hazel Bryan: it is on Hazel that the eyes land, and linger.
photo credit: Will Counts