William “Preacherman” Fesperman

was the field secretary of the Young Patriots Organization (YPO).

Young Patriots at the United Front Against Fascism Conference (1969)

Young Patriots at the United Front Against Fascism Conference (1969)

The YPO was a Chicago-based group of poor, white, and rev­o­lu­tion­ary south­ern trans­plants, who played a cru­cial role in found­ing the orig­i­nal 1969 Rain­bow Coali­tion, a ground­break­ing alliance ini­ti­ated by the Illi­nois chap­ter of the Black Pan­ther Party. But on what grounds could the Patri­ots see them­selves as specif­i­cally white rev­o­lu­tion­ary nation­al­ists?