Oral History Center - UC Berkeley Library

An Oral History with Ericka Huggins [Donated]

Huggins, Ericka
Thompson, Fiona
An Oral History with Ericka Huggins [Donated]
This series of four interviews with Ericka Huggins was conducted in the fall of 2007. They cover her life from her childhood through the late 1970s, and focus primarily on her work with the Black Panther Party. Ericka Huggins has been an activist for her entire adult life – longer considering that she attended the March on Washington on her own at age 15. A few years later she was dropping out of college to join the Black Panther Party in Los Angeles, where she quickly became a leader within the Party's chapter there. In 1969, Ericka's husband John Huggins was shot dead by members of the US Organization, a Black Nationalist group. Tensions between the Black Panther Party and US were later shown to have been fomented by an FBI counterintelligence campaign. Shortly after John's death, Ericka traveled with their infant daughter to John's family's home in New Haven. In Connecticut she helped to found a new Party chapter, but within a few months she found herself a defendant (along with Party Chairman Bobby Seale) in an internationally notorious murder trial. When the trial ended and the judge dropped all charges against her and Seale, Ericka moved to Oakland, California where she continued her work, at first at the Party newspaper, and then at the Party's Oakland Community School, where she was the director for almost ten years.
Subject area(s):
Politics, Law, and Policy
Advocacy and Philanthropy
Community and Identity
Interview date(s):
Advocacy and Philanthropy - Individual Interviews
Huggins, Ericka. "An Oral History with Ericka Huggins [Donated]." Interview by Fiona Thompson in 2007. Oral History Center, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 2007.