What was it like to live through the Sixties? The writers of these 27 memoirs offer the essence of life and youth in the period. In first-person narratives that range from poignant reminiscences to dramatic adventures, the writers convey what it felt like to land a helicopter in the middle of a firefight in Vietnam, to be beaten and jailed for trying to integrate restaurants in the American South, to run for cover when soldiers opened fire on a campus peace rally in Ohio. Other stories describe the writers' experiences organizing farm workers with Cesar Chavez, campaigning to elect Barry Goldwater, striking for Free Speech at Berkeley, living in a commune, joining the women's liberation movement, becoming caught up in a religious cult, or camping in the rain at Woodstock.
Karen Manners Smith and Tim Koster, the editors of "Time it Was," created this book to make the Sixties accessible and alive for today's students, who may know only that the period was unique and exciting, but have few resources to help them see beyond the stereotypical “sex and drugs and rock-n-roll.” The editors felt there was a lot that today's students could identify withidealism, commitment, risk, hard work, fear, hope, disappointmentif they could read the stories of people who, at their age, did important things with their own lives during a volatile historical period.
The stories in “Time it Was” focus on events and experiences consistent with the "Sixties" as historians understand that termi.e., it is broadly interpreted to include a span of years from the 1950s through the mid-1970s. Readers who are not students will enjoy the chance to reconnect with their own memories or learn more about this important period in American history.