The reason you don't hear about it? It doesn't fit the image of the South as backwards & obedient to its masters. Labor activism has been sold as all about white guys in northern factories and it's just NOT.
Loray Mills in 1929: strikes fizzled after key organizers were murdered. But they set the stage for ramped-up labor activism & victories across the entire US. You're welcome!
There's a looooot more to working-class activism than white guys in factories. And the South is really good at that too.
Its leaders were harassed, attacked, and many ultimately killed.
It was her work that tipped the Democratic Party from its century-plus tradition of support for slavery & segregation, into the party of civil rights that it is today.
Hence, the Poor People's Campaign.
Why were voting rights so important in the first place? In large part, to secure better labor conditions for black and working class Americans in the South.
He & other civil rights leaders hung out with a lot of Communists. A lot of them WERE Communists. Because the Civil Rights Movement was a labor movement.
The South wasn't a backwards, underdeveloped, proto-modern regime waiting to become a fully capitalist society.
It WAS a fully capitalist society.
That's what MLK was up against.
It's the reason that the modern, mainstream US protest customs revolve around peaceful marches, civil disobedience, and getting arrested on purpose.
There's a TON of progressive activity down here. White northern progressives don't see it because they're too damn racist to notice Black activism right in front of them.
So my suggestion for: if the South being
1. an activist powerhouse and
2. the cradle of US protest culture
is news to you, take some time to do some reading! This thread's got some links. Start there, & keep going.