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In January 1954, about eighteen months prior to young Emmett Tills' murder and only forty miles away, a young black man named Eddie Noel shot and killed a white honky-tonk operator named Willie Ramon Dickard. Dickard's killing by Noel led to formation of perhaps the largest posse in Mississippi history, its members fueled by hatred, outrage, and in some cases, white lightning. Noel took on elements of the posse in two gunfights, killing two more white men and wounding three others. Noel was never caught, never tried, never convicted, and never went to prison. This is the story of how and why these things happened. It is the story of a time and a place and a social system that are long past. And it is the story of a young man, who defied extraordinary odds and a system that had condemned him to a certain death from the moment he stood up to a white man. The Time of Eddie Noel is a rich history filled with colorful details of a time and a place when the Deep South stood at the threshold of the civil rights movement, which would forever change both the region and the social system that governed the lives of its people, both black and white.