A group of New Jersey fifth-graders recently demonstrated the power of mail when they wrote letters to correct a racial injustice from 60 years earlier.
In 1957, newlyweds Gilbert and Grace Caldwell were turned away from the Mount Airy Resort in Poconos, PA — the place they planned to spend their honeymoon — because they are black.
The experience prompted Gilbert to join the civil rights movement, where he worked side by side with Martin Luther King Jr.
Gilbert now speaks about his experiences at schools and other venues. After a recent visit to an elementary school in Titusville, NJ, students were so bothered by his honeymoon story, they each wrote letters to Mount Airy to ask the resort to give the Caldwells a do-over.
Although the Mount Airy Resort was torn down years ago, the owners of the resort that replaced it were impressed by the students’ letters and gave the Caldwells an all-expenses-paid trip.
“It was really magnificent to know that kids cared that much,” Grace Caldwell told the “CBS Evening News with Jeff Glor” this month.
The students are glad they could give the couple a happy ending.
One said the Caldwells “made me think about not only standing up for myself, but standing up for others and fixing mistakes that were made in the world.”