The Eutaw Housing Authority Advisory Board swore in new officials at its regular meeting held February 23, 2016. The ceremony was conducted by City of Eutaw Municipal Judge Grace Stanford. This event was followed by a Black History Program with a special focus on Greene County.
LaTarsha Johnson served as mistress of order, followed by a greeting from Jacqueline Davis. Faye L. Tyree recited a reading on Shirley Chisom as a pioneering African-American politician. Chisom was the first African American woman to serve in Congress and the first African American woman to run for President of the United States.
A panel consisting of Sara Duncan, Ovetta Smith, Leo Branch, Lorenzo French and Derrick Hall reflected by on history. Mrs. Ovetta Smith recalled times pass when she, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Julian Bond worked together to get people registered to vote. She also recalled an incident where Rev. Gilmore was beaten on the side of the head. She felt the injustice of it all just for standing up for what was right.
Leo Branch recalled the sit-in under the Oak Tree in Forkland singing We Shall Over Come. He recalled when there was a time when we were not allowed to get an education. Now you can. Every child can get the education they need.
Derrick Hall stated as a young man, his mother instilled in them to put God first, go to school and get the best education you can and respect your elders.
Ms. Sarah Duncan remembered that Gilmore and Branch where two main pioneers in the Greene County movement. They had the community support back then. Everyone loved one other; helped one other. “Only when we come together on one accord can we move forward as we did back then. It is important our children know where we came from and why it is important to vote and know our history to make things better for our livelihood,” she stated.
Lorenzo French recited a Martin Luther King Jr. speech, his last one addressing the garbage workers in Tennessee. The youth present were asked questions and received prizes. Refreshments were served. The Black History program was enjoyed by all.