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Dianne Hudson

Television producer and executive, Dianne A. Hudson was born on July 13, 1954 in Georgetown, South Carolina to William Atkinson and Pansye Atkinson. Hudson attended St. Cyprian’s Elementary School in Georgetown and, after her family moved to Baltimore, Maryland in 1963, she attended Our Lady of Lourdes Grade School. In 1972, she graduated from Bishop Walsh High School in Cumberland, Maryland. Hudson earned her B.A. degree in broadcast journalism from Ohio University in Athens, Ohio in 1976.

Hudson began her career in 1976 as a broadcast news writer for the Associated Press at its Detroit Bureau. In 1977, she served as a news bureau coordinator for the J.L. Hudson Company. Hudson went on to become a television producer at several stations in Detroit, Michigan, including WXYZ-TV, WDIV-TV, and the PBS affiliate, WTVS-TV. She then became a producer for the Detroit Black Journal in 1984. In 1986, Hudson joined The Oprah Winfrey Show in Chicago as an associate producer, where she was later promoted to supervising senior producer. In 1994, she began serving as The Oprah Winfrey Show’s executive producer. Hudson helped create, and was in charge of implementing Oprah’s Book Club, as well as the viewer-driven public charity, Oprah’s Angel Network. She was the executive producer of ChristmasKindness, during which Oprah Winfrey distributed Christmas gifts of toys and clothing to children in South Africa. Hudson also served as vice president of Harpo Productions and as president of The Oprah Winfrey Foundation and Oprah’s Angel Network, where she negotiated an agreement with the South African government and supervised the building of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls, a boarding school for underprivileged girls in grades seven through twelve. In 2005, Hudson served on the board of Howard University. In 2010, Hudson co-founded Andre Walker Hair, LLC, selling beauty products to women.

During her eighteen-year career with Harpo Studios, she received nine Emmy Awards by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Hudson also received two Emmy Awards from the Detroit Chapter of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Hudson has one son, William “Burk” Hudson.

Dianne A. Hudson was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 6, 2017.

Accession Number

A2017.037

Sex

Female

Interview Date

03/06/2017

Last Name

Hudson

Maker Category
Organizations
Schools

St. Cyprian's School

Our Lady of Lourdes School

Bishop Walsh School

Frostburg State University

Ohio University

First Name

Dianne

Birth City, State, Country

Georgetown

HM ID

HUD07

Favorite Season

Summer

State

South Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

Anywhere tropical and warm, with a beach and calm water.

Favorite Quote

Life Rewards Action.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Florida

Birth Date

7/13/1954

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Miami

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Crab

Short Description

Television producer and executive Dianna A. Hudson (1954 - ) was a television producer for several Detroit news stations and served as executive producer of The Oprah Winfrey Show, president of The Oprah Winfrey Foundation and Oprah’s Angel Network.

Employment

Andre Walker Hair

Harpo Studios

WXYZ-TV

Favorite Color

Orange

Kojo Nnamdi

Broadcast journalist Kojo Nnamdi was born as Rex Orville Montague Paul on January 8, 1945 in Guyana. He emigrated first to Montreal, Canada in 1967 to attend McGill University, and then to the United States in 1968.

Nnamdi first lived in Brooklyn, New York, where he worked on Wall Street and joined the Black Panther Party. He then moved to Washington, D.C. in 1969, and became part of a new organization called The Center For Black Education, developed in large measure by former members of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). In 1970, Nnamdi was hired as the editor of the radio show “Sauti,” a news magazine program on WOL-AM. From 1973 to 1985, he served as news editor and then news director for WHUR-FM, and produced the award-winning local news program “The Daily Drum.” Then, from 1985 to 2011, Nnamdi hosted “Evening Exchange,” a public affairs television program broadcast by WHUT-TV at Howard University. He became host of WAMU-FM’s “Public Interest” in August of 1998. In 2002, “Public Interest” changed its name to “The Kojo Nnamdi Show.” In addition, he has served as the host of WAMU’s “The Politics Hour.”

Nnamdi has chaired the board of the Public Access Corporation of Washington, D.C. since 1997, and served on the board of the Library of Congress American Folklife Center from 2003 to 2008. He has also been active in Guyaid, an organization devoted to the welfare of children in Guyana.

Nnamdi was honored as a civil rights hero by the National Council for Community Justice in 2001; and in 2003, the Library of Congress selected Nnamdi as the keynote speaker for African American History Month. In 2005, he was named a "Washingtonian of the Year" by Washingtonian magazine. DCist named Nnamdi one of "DC’s Most Influential People" in 2007, and Washingtonian has listed Nnamdi as one of the “150 Most Influential People in Washington.”

Nnamdi has five sons and lives with his wife in Washington, D.C.

Kojo Nnamdi was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on January 30, 2014.

Accession Number

A2014.014

Sex

Male

Interview Date

1/30/2014

Last Name

Nnamdi

Maker Category
Schools

McGill University

Queen's College of Guyana

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Kojo

Birth City, State, Country

Georgetown

HM ID

NNA02

Favorite Season

Spring

Favorite Vacation Destination

Antigua

Favorite Quote

The Greatest Thing You Ever Learn Is To Love And Be Loved In Return.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Maryland

Interview Description
Birth Date

1/8/1945

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Baltimore

Country

Guyana

Favorite Food

Chicken (Grilled), Rice

Short Description

Broadcast journalist Kojo Nnamdi (1945 - ) has worked as a radio and television show host in the Washington, D.C. area for over forty years. His shows have included WHUT-TV’s “Evening Exchange,” and WAMU-FM’s “The Kojo Nnamdi Show” and “The Politics Hour."

Employment

WOL-AM

WHUR-FM

WHUT TV

WAMU-FM

Favorite Color

Brown

Timing Pairs
0,0:2512,18:12620,126:32978,357:33438,403:65715,758:84165,1016:88222,1069:88662,1075:116928,1391:117672,1400:142754,1798:148182,1856:151947,1897:155600,1952$0,0:6382,84:35960,432:39960,487:43768,506:44302,536:56200,683:76618,938:76948,944:77410,954:83999,1014:100460,1196:129970,1438:155060,1709:168163,1851:168964,1901:196760,2152:198272,2182:204730,2243:211590,2298:233554,2476:233994,2482:242350,2546
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Kojo Nnamdi's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Kojo Nnamdi lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about the African and East Indian populations in Guyana

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Kojo Nnamdi continues to describe his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his parents' engagement

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his likeness to his parents

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his childhood home in Georgetown, Guyana

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Kojo Nnamdi describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Kojo Nnamdi describes the music and culture of Guyana

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his elementary school and sports

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his childhood interest in conversation and stories

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about anti-colonial struggle

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about Forbes Burnham

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about Walter Rodney, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about Walter Rodney, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about Walter Rodney, pt. 3

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about the presence of radio in his childhood

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about attending high school at Queens College in Guyana, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about attending high school at Queens College in Guyana, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his time before and at McGill University in Montreal, Canada

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his political activity at McGill University in Montreal, Canada

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about living in New York City, New York

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his former wife and his move to Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about the Center for Black Education in Washington, D.C., pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about the Center for Black Education in Washington, D.C., pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about the Center for Black Education's radio projects

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his work at Howard University Radio

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Kojo Nnamdi reflects on Howard University Radio

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about black political convenings in the '70s

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about Melvin Lindsey's "Quiet Storm," pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about Melvin Lindsey's "Quiet Storm," pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Kojo Nnamdi remembers his time as news director at WHUR in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his transition into television work

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his television and radio shows, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his television and radio shows, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his television show, "Evening Exchange"

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his journalistic philosophy

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about surprising moments in his career

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Kojo Nnamdi reflects on conducting interviews

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Kojo Nnamdi reflects on the differences between WAMU and his broadcasting career at Howard University, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Kojo Nnamdi reflects on the differences between WAMU and his broadcasting career at Howard University, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Kojo Nnamdi reflects on the differences between WAMU and his broadcasting career at Howard University, pt. 3

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his plans for his future

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his experience in Ethiopia

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Kojo Nnamdi describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Kojo Nnamdi reflects on his life

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Kojo Nnamdi reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about his family

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Kojo Nnamdi talks about how he would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$5

DAStory

5$3

DATitle
Kojo Nnamdi describes the music and culture of Guyana
Kojo Nnamdi talks about his television and radio shows, pt. 1
Transcript
Well, speaking of music, I mean that's, that's--what kind of music was played? I mean, what kind of music music was played?$$There was the local music, which was calypsos and local folk music. The music that we heard on the radio was generally music coming from either the United States or England, which was the colonial power there at the time, popular music generally. In my father's era it would have been one kind of music. By the time we came along is when R&B started to dominate in the airways, but in their day they were listening to Bing Crosby, and Duke Ellington, and Count Basie. In my day we were listening to more R&B artists and the like. But because Guyana was the only English speaking country in South America, we were located right next door to Dutch Guiana, which is now Suriname. And our radio stations could pick up the music coming from those stations. So merengue music, which they like to play on that station, was also very popular in Guyana, and we listened to all kinds of other music that influenced our local music. But the, the local music that we generally listened to and enjoyed the most was of the calypso variety.$$So Guyana just, just for the sake of those who don't know where it is, I mean, it's in the--it's on the, the--$$Northern--$$--northern--$$It's on the northern tip of South America, bordered by Brazil, Venezuela, Suriname, and the Atlantic Ocean to the north.$$It's the--it's the I guess the eastern most part of South America that comes out--(simultaneous)--$$Kind of northeast--$$North--okay.$$--part of South America. It kind of looks--the shape of it looks like a, a lion if you look at it on a map. But it's a country of 83,000 square miles with a population of less than a million people--three quarters of a million people. And that population has been stable for at least four or five decades, 'cause so many people leave the country, and the population hasn't been growing at all.$Okay.$$"Evening Exchange" was a live one-hour television broadcast that took phones that aired from seven to eight every evening, so it was a lot like "Insight" except with cameras. And of course, I was to discover that the cameras made all the difference in the world. Coming from a background where, as I began by saying, in a country where people listened to the radio, it became apparent to me when I started doing television that people don't listen to television as much as they watch it, and that things are said on talk radio that people hear you can say them on television. But unless you say them two or three times, people may not hear them at all because they're busy watching television. So it was a new experience and a new challenge for me, doing "Evening Exchange." It was every night, five days a week, much like what I'd been doing before, except it was an hour long and it was television. And so from 1985, I was doing that, and then as the television station began to have some financial difficulty, instead of doing the show live nightly, we started prerecording it; and instead of doing five nights a week, we were there two or three nights a week. And that's what I essentially was doing up until--from, from about nineteen--we started recording the show I guess around 1992--1993 maybe--about '93 [1993]--and that's what I was doing up until 1998. The show gave me an identity and I was able to give it an identity that I may not have had before as an individual. I'd always been associated with the "Daily Drum," but then "Evening Exchange" gave me an identity to the point where they changed the name of the show and called it "Evening Exchange with Kojo." And it was that that I was doing in 1998 when a guy I knew from WAMU Radio [American University Radio] approached me and asked me if I would be interested in doing the "Politics" program. It was called "The Politics Hour with Mark Plotkin" here at WAMU, and I agreed to have a conversation with the program director at WAMU Radio about doing that. After that conversation, I agreed not just to do the "Politics Hour with Mark Plotkin," but the entire show, which was then called "Public Interest," ten hours a week from noon to two, Monday through Friday in addition to continuing my work with "Evening Exchange." And so from June--from June of 1998 until I retired from Howard University [Washington, D.C.] in 2011 I did both jobs--the radio station ten hours a week, and two or three hours of "Evening Exchange" every week--wore me out. And then--

H. Mitsy Wilson

Corporate executive H. Mitsy Wilson was born on December 13, 1950 in Georgetown, Guyana. She grew up in New York, where she spent her formative years. Wilson graduated from the College of Mount Saint Vincent with her B.A. degree in sociology and social work.

In 1972, Wilson worked as a commercial coordinator for the New York broadcast station WPIX-TV. In 1973, she was hired as a social worker for the Seamen’s Society for Children and Families. Wilson went on to work for the New York Board of Education as director of counseling and special projects. In 1981, she was hired at New York Airlines, where she worked as both manager of training and consumer relations and manager of consumer affairs and baggage services until 1986. Continental Airlines acquired New York Airlines in 1986 and Wilson was promoted to director of consumer affairs and training.

In 1988, Wilson was hired as manager of management training and diversity at Times-Mirror Cable Television. She was promoted to director of leadership development and diversity at Times-Mirror Company in 1995; and, in 1999, she was named corporate vice president of leadership and organizational development. Then, in 2000, Fox Entertainment Group hired Wilson as senior vice president of diversity development, where she was responsible for development, execution and evaluation of all diversity initiatives. The appointment made her the highest-ranking African American female executive at the company. In 2005, she assumed responsibility for all diversity efforts for News Corporation. In 2011, Wilson became a founding partner of ForAfrica, an international consultancy firm specializing in leadership development solutions.

Wilson has received numerous awards, including the New York Governor’s Award in 1980, the Minorities in Broadcasting’s Phoenix Award in 2003, the 2006 NAACP President’s Award, and the 2010 Corporate Executive of the Year Award from the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York. She is the Chairperson of Workplace Hollywood, a non-profit organization dedicated to developing, training and placing a diverse workforce in entertainment, and is a former member of the UCLA Medical Affairs Board, Nielsen Media Research African American Advisory Council, and Howard University School of Communications Board.

Wilson lives with her husband, Greg James, and has two daughters, Meisha and Alia; a stepdaughter, Shermian; and three granddaughters, Sherine, Shermika and Esther.

H. Mitsy Wilson was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on December 20, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.355

Sex

Female

Interview Date

12/20/2013

Last Name

Wilson

Maker Category
Marital Status

Common Law

Middle Name

Eloise

Schools

University of California, Los Angeles

Queens College, City University of New York

College of Mount Saint Vincent

St. Nicholas Of Tolentine High School

St. Nicholas of Tolentine Elementary School

P.S. 91- Bronx School

St. Philip's School

First Name

Hazel

Birth City, State, Country

Georgetown

HM ID

WIL70

Favorite Season

Christmas

Favorite Vacation Destination

Costa Rica

Favorite Quote

That's Phenomenal.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Interview Description
Birth Date

12/13/1950

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Los Angeles

Country

Guyana

Favorite Food

Roti And Curry Chicken

Short Description

Corporate executive H. Mitsy Wilson (1950 - ) was a founding partner of ForAfrica and worked in diversity management for over twenty-five years. She became the Fox Entertainment Group’s first senior vice president of diversity development in 2000.

Employment

ForAfrica

News Corp. Fox Entertainment

Times Mirror Company

Continental Airlines

New York Airlines

Board of Education

Society of Seaman's Children

Favorite Color

Bright Colors

Timing Pairs
0,0:2932,19:10452,222:20788,357:38020,619:44740,781:45300,790:54972,955:66290,1092:79978,1341:100234,1642:100538,1647:106542,1792:136926,2308:146279,2417:152160,2486$0,0:2236,81:8256,199:13432,274:21712,445:25261,507:25625,512:29902,641:37458,720:42925,857:43387,865:54380,990:55290,1020:56070,1035:57825,1071:61400,1185:61660,1190:64650,1273:80910,1436:83404,1481:99506,1711:99902,1748:100496,1759:103466,1816:103796,1822:105116,1859:106304,1891:114078,1977:116886,2042:119766,2122:137580,2444:143949,2485:145812,2536:150366,2655:152574,2709:153402,2738:164036,2861:179932,3133:181210,3158:181565,3164:184334,3231:184973,3242:185612,3278:187955,3336:195980,3360:197770,3399
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of H. Mitsy Wilson's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Slating of H. Mitsy Wilson's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her mother's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her mother's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about her mother's career

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about her father's role in her upbringing

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her father's immigration to the United States

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers her paternal family's legacy in the sciences

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her parents' personalities and who she takes after

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - H. Mitsy Wilson lists her siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her earliest childhood memories

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers moving with her family to the Bronx, New York

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about her early experiences of religion

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her early education

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers her early influences

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls her athletic achievements during high school

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her academic success

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls her favorite television programs

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers her social activities

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers the assassination of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls her college applications

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her experiences at College of Mount Saint Vincent in the Bronx, New York

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers her professors at College of Mount Saint Vincent

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her social activities at College of Mount Saint Vincent

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about her decision not to attend law school

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls her position at WPIX-TV in New York City

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers working at the Seamen's Society for Children and Families in Staten Island, New York

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about learning martial arts

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers working at a drug prevention program in Queens, New York, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers working at a drug prevention program in Queens, New York, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her role at New York Air in Queens, New York

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers New York Air's merger with Continental Airlines

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls joining Times Mirror Cable Television, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls the start of her career in diversity development

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her work in management development at the Times Mirror Company

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers her promotion to corporate officer at the Times Mirror Company

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls the Times Mirror Company's hostile takeover by Tribune Media

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers becoming the senior vice president of diversity at Fox Entertainment Group

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls creating the diversity division at Fox Entertainment Group

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about Peter Chernin's support for diversity development

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls developing relationships with the presidents of Fox Entertainment Group

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers creating the diversity advisory board at Fox Entertainment Group

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes the diversity and development staff at Fox Entertainment Group

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her apprenticeship and mentorship programs

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls presenting her accomplishments to Rupert Murdoch

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers receiving the NAACP President's Award

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about her retirement from News Corporation

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls the start of her activism in Africa

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers founding ForAfrica

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - H. Mitsy Wilson recalls meeting with African leaders to develop programs for ForAfrica

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes ForAfrica's early leadership development programs

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - H. Mitsy Wilson remembers traveling to Africa with Ramsey Jay, Jr.

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about ForAfrica's international studies program

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about ForAfrica's potential impact on African Americans

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - H. Mitsy Wilson reflects upon her life, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - H. Mitsy Wilson reflects upon her life, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - H. Mitsy Wilson reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes her relationship with her second husband

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - H. Mitsy Wilson talks about her second husband's relationship with her daughters

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes the challenges faced by African Americans in Corporate America

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - H. Mitsy Wilson describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - H. Mitsy Wilson narrates her photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - H. Mitsy Wilson narrates her photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$4

DAStory

7$8

DATitle
H. Mitsy Wilson recalls her position at WPIX-TV in New York City
H. Mitsy Wilson remembers becoming the senior vice president of diversity at Fox Entertainment Group
Transcript
I have a note here that you worked at WPIX-TV [New York, New York]?$$Yes (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) In--okay.$$(Laughter) Channel 11. I know, like, I did- didn't even know anything then. I, you know, graduated from school [College of Mount Saint Vincent, Riverdale, New York] and went in this for interview. And there was a woman who was heading up commercials at the time. And she needed an assistant, and they were only taking college grads. And she interviewed me and said, "Fine." The wonderful thing about it is--and who is the African American woman that was on Channel 11? Alma, oh, Alma Johnson, I think it was. She actually had a program on Channel 11 ['Black Pride'], and I had a wonderful opportunity to meet her. She kind of mentored me along the way in terms of understanding TV. But I, you know, I started out typing, you know, being an assistant to the head of commercial insertion. And then one day, I looked at the folks that were working and said, "Look, I can do more than this." So I became a commercial inserter. And that was interesting at that point because everything was done by typewriter. So you'd get a show, and they'd say the show is twenty-three minutes. And you'd have to fill the rest with commercials and public service announcements. So they tell you, "Okay, the show starts at eight o'clock, and the first break is at 8:01, 8:07." So then I'm typing in 8:07:00:00 to eight--and if it's ten seconds, fifteen seconds, it's got to be exact. So, and you're doing this by--manually. You know, you're not, there's no program there to help you do it. And I would sit back--and they were kind enough to give me the daytime programs because you couldn't screw up the evenings. If you screwed up the evenings with commercials, you were in trouble. So I got the daytime programs. And on Channel 11, I did kid programs, 'Howdy Doody' ['The Howdy Doody Show'] and all of that, Captain Joe Bolton and, so it wasn't that bad if you, you know, you were blank in those areas. But I will tell you, I used to sit there and watch, and my heart used to pound. Because if it went to black, it meant you messed up, and you didn't, you didn't allow enough time, or you may--had too much time in there. And the next day you'd just have your ops meeting, and, "What happened?" So I did that for a while. I enjoyed it, but my heart wasn't into it. And again, I didn't know what opportunities they had at TV. Had I known, I would have stayed.$So I got a phone call. Bonnie Hill [Bonnie Guiton Hill], who was corporate vice president of com- community and public affairs for Times Mirror [Times Mirror Company], a ver- a wonderful woman--she worked in the Reagan [President Ronald Wilson Reagan] White House and then came to us--called me on the phone and said, "Mitsy [HistoryMaker H. Mitsy Wilson], I just got a phone call from a headhunter. You know, Fox [Fox Entertainment Group] is looking for a head of diversity for their company. They have just signed an MOU, a memorandum of understanding with the NAACP [National Association for the Advancement of Colored People]. And I think you'd be perfect for the job." And I said, "Fox, the Fox," (laughter)? That was the only thing I could say. "Rupert Murdoch's Fox," (laughter)? And I said, "(Makes sound)." She said, and she was so good. This is where it helps to have mentors and people who can help you move through your journey. The first thing she said to me is, "I hear what you're saying. But before you sit back and say, 'I don't think so,' I think what you need to do is hear them out. Find out what the company's about, find out, find out what they want they want you do to. I think you'd be great at it, anyway." So I said, "Okay, I'll do that." I met with the headhunter and went through a series of interviews. I then went to Fox and had about eight interviews at Fox--legal, the president of this company, president here--I mean I was, I was meeting everyone. And then I finally got a phone call saying that my--I'm a finalist and that I will now meet with the president of Fox, who was Peter Chernin at the time, and I might also be meeting with Rupert Murdoch. And at that point, they said to me, "And if you're not interested, please let us know now. Because I don't, we don't want to put you up for this and then have you go into, you know, the president and you know, the chairman, and say no." So I spent quite a bit of time to looking at, you know, what's this organization about, you know? What are some of the things they're doing, you know? And I had to separate--at that point, Fox Entertainment was its own stand alone company, and it was not connected to News Corp [News Corporation; News Corp]. So Peter ran Fox Entertainment as their chairman. And then Rupert ran News Corp. Peter was the CEO of News Corp, but they were stand alone units. So I sat back and I said to myself, "If it's Fox, I can do it." You know, and I looked at what the memorandum of understanding was asking for, and it's everything I've done in my career. So I felt comfortable with that. Now it was just a matter of going in and meeting with Peter Chernin and see do we agree? How is this going to work? I went in, met with him, had a wonderful interview, wonderful meeting with him. I was so impressed with him, and I think part of it is because he was a New Yorker (laughter). So you've got to understand, you know, the New York [New York] mentality. But he sold me on the job. Gail Berman, who I reported to when I got there--a go getter, definitely another New Yorker, who saw things outside of the box. You could tell she was committed to diversity in some of the work she'd done before she came to Fox. But Peter was the one that sold me on that, on, on the position. So I took the position as senior vice president of diversity and development.

Godfrey Gumbs

Research physicist and physics professor Godfrey Gumbs was born on September 7, 1948 in Georgetown, Guyana to Mary Teresa Gumbs, a homemaker and Charles Alexander Gumbs, a postal worker. After graduating from Queen’s College of Guyana, he received a Guyana scholarship to attend Trinity College, Cambridge University where he earned his B.A. degree in applied mathematics in 1971. From 1971 to 1972, he sat Part III of the Mathematics Tripos which is a natural first step for the doctoral degree at Cambridge. Gumbs went on to earn his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in theoretical condensed matter physics from the University of Toronto in 1973 and 1978, respectively.

From 1978 to 1982, Gumbs served as a Research Associate at the National Research Council of Canada in Ottawa. Then, from 1982 to 1989, he worked as a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada Fellow, a Canada University Research Fellow at Dalhousie University and the University of Lethbridge. As an NSERC Fellow, Gumbs held the position of Assistant Professor of physics at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia and as Professor of Physics at the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada. In 1992, he was hired by Hunter College, City University of New York and was duly appointed the Chianta-Stoll Chair and as a University Distinguished Professor. Gumbs received the Eugene Lang Student-Faculty Research Fellowship at Hunter College in 1993 and the Presidential Award for Excellence in Research from Hunter in 2003. He has served as a vising professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a J. William Fulbright Senior Scholar and a visiting fellow at his alma mater, Trinity College, Cambridge University. His research interests in theoretical condensed matter physics include: nanoscale semiconductor structures and electronic properties of mesoscopic systems. He has over 300 publications in leading scientific journals and co-wrote the textbook Properties of Interacting Low-Dimensional System, in 2011.

Gumbs is a fellow of the Institute of Physics, the New York Academy of Sciences and the American Physical Society (APS). He was an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow, a United States Air Force Faculty Fellow and a Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics Scholar (KITP) at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Gumbs is a member of the Sigma-Xi Honorary Scientific Research Society. In 2005, he received APS’ Edward A. Bouchet Award for his significant contributions to physics and his mentoring of students. Gumbs and his wife, Jean have three adult sons.

Godfrey Gumbs was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on May 17, 2012.

Accession Number

A2012.106

Sex

Male

Archival Photo 1
Interview Date

5/17/2012

Last Name

Gumbs

Marital Status

Married

Schools

University of Toronto

Queen's College of Guyana

University of Cambridge, Trinity College

Rumveldt Anglican School

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Godfrey

Birth City, State, Country

Georgetown

HM ID

GUM01

Favorite Season

Christmas

Favorite Vacation Destination

Panama

Favorite Quote

That's all it takes.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

New York

Interview Description
Birth Date

9/7/1948

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

New York

Country

Guyana

Favorite Food

Curry

Short Description

Research physicist and physics professor Godfrey Gumbs (1948 - ) is a distinguished professor at Hunter College of the City University of New York and an expert in the field of nanophysics.

Employment

CUNY- Hunter College

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

University of Lethbridge, Canada

Dalhousie University

National Research Council (NRC)

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:1254,17:1788,27:11843,104:18775,192:36180,290:36990,301:41185,360:42181,374:42928,403:56646,512:57576,523:66790,600:67240,606:68140,617:89621,887:90331,898:97986,995:102121,1033:103363,1047:105157,1080:108624,1101:109086,1109:109350,1114:116104,1219:116464,1225:122296,1330:133754,1430:137200,1444:139048,1488:139378,1494:139972,1504:140698,1521:141424,1535:141952,1544:150100,1625:150444,1630:156136,1682:158440,1739:160424,1777:165635,1847:167858,1859:171580,1888:172872,1907:178952,2004:179560,2013:187680,2101:188310,2110:189210,2122:189660,2129:192020,2138:196637,2218:197690,2237:199634,2277:202388,2315:203603,2334:208870,2356$0,0:3120,11:3876,32:7041,59:9018,74:10550,82:12200,103:15974,132:18200,141:22589,232:23205,241:23744,249:28587,316:30433,349:30717,354:31001,359:32066,379:32492,387:32918,395:34835,430:35474,441:44111,527:44775,532:47431,575:49340,604:54964,635:55276,640:55588,645:55900,651:56212,656:62859,747:63151,752:66290,801:66582,806:67020,814:68918,845:70597,870:75310,898:77310,934:80350,981:80670,986:80990,991:81550,1000:82670,1020:83150,1028:97776,1219:102936,1246:103332,1251:104223,1305:110416,1338:110764,1343:112243,1361:113287,1374:113635,1379:114505,1391:116767,1437:117376,1442:128213,1596:128797,1605:129308,1614:129600,1619:130257,1629:134199,1709:138423,1714:138990,1722:140124,1737:141015,1755:148595,1843:150128,1864:151953,1898:152245,1903:153559,1924:154070,1932:154362,1937:163201,2161:182976,2368:183366,2374:183990,2384:185628,2407:189528,2478:191244,2505:198392,2574:198736,2579:199080,2584:199682,2593:201746,2721:211838,2829:219700,2863:220420,2875:221212,2892:224164,2918:226828,2969:232348,3038:235310,3055:235690,3060:236450,3071:244432,3173:244822,3179:251270,3242
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Godfrey Gumbs' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Godfrey Gumbs lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about trade in Georgetown, Guiana

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his mother's upbringing in Georgetown, Guiana

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Godfrey Gumbs describes how his parents met and their personalities

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his neighborhood in Georgetown, Guiana and the sights, sounds, and smells of growing up

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his days at St. Thomas Moore Roman Catholic School

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his childhood illnesses

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about Wrungfield Anglican School

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his early education

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his childhood interests and activities

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about the social and political climate of Guiana

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his family's educational background

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his graduation from Queen's College

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Godfrey Gumbs describes the influence of religion on his family

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his experience going to London for the first time

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Godfrey Gumbs describes the student body of Cambridge University

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about the faculty at Cambridge University

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about solid state physics and his decision to attend the University of Toronto

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Godfrey Gumbs describes how he met his wife

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about the University of Toronto

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his doctoral research

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his postdoctoral research

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his work at the University of Lethbridge

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his work during his sabbatical

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about the use of carbon and carbon nanotubes

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his move to Hunter College

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Godfrey Gumbs discusses the future of nanotechnology

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Godfrey Gumbs describes the discovery of graphene

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about honors he has received

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Godfrey Gumbs describes Trinity College and his work with single electron transfer

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his research on graphene

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Godfrey Gumbs describes the challenges of attracting more minority students to physics

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about the future of nanotechnology

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his experience in Toronto as a minority STEM student

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Godfrey Gumbs discusses New York's efforts to attract minority students to physics

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Godfrey Gumbs reflects upon his career

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Godfrey Gumbs describes his efforts to help students in Guiana

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about his family

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Godfrey Gumbs talks about how he would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$5

DAStory

6$5

DATitle
Godfrey Gumbs describes his doctoral research
Godfrey Gumbs describes the challenges of attracting more minority students to physics
Transcript
All right, well, tell us. What was your dissertation title and what was it about in the simplest terms that you can describe it in?$$Okay, so, I was doing a couple of problems for my, for my dissertation but then decided to write just one of them. One was on the phase transitions in, in restricted systems, in low dimensional systems in films. And a phase transition is something as follows, namely that, if you have a piece of ice and you, you place it out in the, in the sun, then it melts. So there is a transition from solid, the ice phase, to a liquid phase or if you boil water, there's a phase transition from the liquid phase to the gaseous phase which is steam. And this is a very complicated problem. I mean phase transitions occur, for example, if you, if you have a magnet, and you, you heat, you warm the magnet up, then it could lose its magnetization. So the, the transition from being magnetized to not being magnetized, that's known as a phase transition. And so I was considering phase transitions and the behaviors of, what plays a role? The thing is what plays a role in causing this transition. And so I was, I did, I did a couple of problems on this, but my thesis advisor wanted me to write something up for the dissertation, so I can defend it (laughter), to become a doctor. And so I wrote up something on, on the second problem which is entitled, 'Surface Spin Wave Modes.' So if you have a surface, then it's quite, the behavior of the material is quite different from if you look inside of the material itself. So that's one. That's the operative word, "surface". A spin wave is a wave which involves a spin, and the spin in an intrinsic property. For example, you know that the electron has a charge, you know. There's a positive charge or a negative charge. The electron has a negative charge, but also it has something which is due to an internal degree of freedom known as its spin, like a spinning top. And this spin is what couples the electron to a magnetic field. For example, if you do an MRI, when there's only, the only way you could get an image is because you have a material which couples to this external magnetic field. And the material must have this internal degree of freedom known as the spin. So I did my work on this, on this extra degree of freedom and how it behaves in, on a film.$Okay, now, what are some of the challenges in bringing new students along today?$$Money. It's usually funding, funding. So, it is expected that if you are in physics, and you take a graduate student, then you should help, help at least to support that student. The only way you can support that student is if you have external funding or funding from some source. And so you have to write a proposal, get it reviewed, get the funding to support a student. And it is vital, I think, as you are, as you're getting older, to have students who you can mentor and with their energies be able to complete some of the projects which you have some idea, some vision how to do it, but, you know, you need man power. So this is a challenge which, not only faces me, but as a theorist, an experimentalist, even more so because then they have to find funding for equipment or supplies and they must have multiple hands, you know, doing the research. So it's a struggle, it's a struggle from that point of view. But when the work is done, and the results are, and the results are out, then it's very rewarding because then, you know, you get to share your knowledge. And you're able to contribute and, and participate in a very dynamic field.$$Is it more difficult to attract funding for theoretical research than for--$$Well, you need a lot more funding for doing experimental work because you need equipment, and you need supplies and you need students to help you out. And theory, if you, if you are out of funding, then you could still make do for a while until you get funding. But funding is becoming more and more difficult because there's less and less funding available. So you have to spend a lot of time forming alliances with people who are in research labs, who know about funding or just, you just have to keep looking. So it's, it's difficult, it's difficult now, but it was, it was also difficult when I got started many years ago.$$Okay, is part of the difficulty educating a funding source as to what you're actually doing?$$Say it again. I'm sorry.$$Is part of the difficulty educating the funding sources of what--$$Identifying the funding sources?$$I mean, well, yeah, well, not just identifying, but educating them in terms of what you're actually gonna do with the money?$$Oh, (laughter), yes. So you have to write a proposal, telling how you would spend the money and telling them what problems you will do. So the problems must be of interest to the referees or to the funding agency. So you must write a good proposal which would tell them how your work would be able to contribute in the, to the field. So in some way, you're educating them or trying to.$$Right, that's what I would guess that--$$Yeah, yeah.$$--make some of the projects not be as easily understood in physics as they would be in some other field.$$Well, they are supposed to send them out to experts in the field. So you're not really working alone in the field. You have all the competitors or you have colleagues or so, and they--the proposal must be such that it is interesting for funding. So you must write it in a way which they understand and appreciate, and the topic must be worthwhile funding because, you know, it's money, yeah.

Shirley James

Shirley James was born in Georgetown, South Carolina on September 5, 1946. Her mother, Camille Barber, was a schoolteacher and her father, Eli Baxter Barber, was a mail porter. In 1964, James graduated from Howard High School. She continued her education at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, where she received her B.A. degree in psychology in 1968. She went on to receive her M.A. degree in education from Harvard University in 1970.

In 1971, James became a counselor and administrator for Savannah State University. She also held positions as Director of Testing, Vice President of Student Affairs and Counselor Orientation Director. During her tenure, James developed Peer Counselors, a committee to support the students of Savannah State University.

James also became a publisher and editor for The Tribune, a weekly newspaper founded by James’ husband, Robert Earl James, that focuses on the issues of African Americans.

In 2002, James left her position at Savannah State University to become the Coordinator of the Savannah Black Heritage Festival. Between 2004 and 2005, she served on the Board of Directors of the Savannah Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, and in 2005, she was appointed to a five year term for Savannah’s Airport Commission. James is a member of several professional organizations as well as owner of the Education Testing Services in Savannah.

James and her husband Robert live in Savannah, Georgia. They have three adult children.

James was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on January 17, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.013

Sex

Female

Interview Date

1/17/2007

Last Name

James

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Howard High School

Howard Adult Center & Optional School

Spelman College

Harvard Graduate School of Education

J.B. Beck Middle School

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Shirley

Birth City, State, Country

Georgetown

HM ID

JAM02

Favorite Season

Fall

State

South Carolina

Favorite Quote

You Live, You Learn, And You Pass It On.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Interview Description
Birth Date

9/5/1946

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Savannah

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Bread

Short Description

Academic administrator and newspaper publishing chief executive Shirley James (1946 - ) was the owner and former publisher and editor of the Savannah Tribune. As a Licensed Professional Counselor, James held positions as Director of Testing, Vice President of Student Affairs and Counselor-Orientation Director at Savannah State University.

Employment

Savannah State University

The Savannah Tribune

Favorite Color

Winter White

Timing Pairs
0,0:1128,54:11374,270:12596,289:18332,329:19222,342:40246,757:41338,779:41758,785:42514,795:43270,809:44530,822:51922,960:57972,1000:61883,1036:63016,1049:64149,1063:67960,1111:73934,1187:74449,1193:84180,1239:86326,1271:87066,1283:87806,1295:88546,1306:88990,1314:89508,1322:96834,1456:97278,1463:111928,1626:114447,1637:115790,1652:120214,1729:121162,1744:122979,1769:124085,1784:142184,1996:145538,2041:147602,2063:148032,2069:148720,2078:151300,2121:155190,2133:174426,2477:179305,2543:180257,2553:181209,2562:182042,2570:183340,2582:184006,2592:193058,2731:193742,2743:196098,2783:196706,2792:198378,2813:198910,2821:199442,2829:199898,2836:201190,2858:203546,2902:205370,2933:212590,3033:218017,3047:218649,3056:220229,3079:222915,3117:223942,3135:225048,3152:225759,3162:226549,3175:226944,3181:229156,3236:229946,3248:230973,3269:232553,3298:234844,3343:243232,3434:243562,3440:244770,3451$0,0:552,9:1012,15:3036,46:3864,100:9476,187:13708,245:14076,250:21252,347:32654,475:35565,546:36559,564:36914,570:42820,612:50020,671:50384,676:53023,714:53842,725:56117,773:56481,802:74442,974:82268,1060:86363,1156:90458,1224:90822,1229:91186,1234:93916,1279:112500,1439:115904,1552:138006,1860:139242,1873:157758,2017:159153,2032:159525,2037:163368,2066:165490,2077:170892,2175:171336,2182:172372,2201:173112,2219:179180,2336:181030,2384:181474,2391:182140,2401:199264,2601:200056,2611:202976,2621:205568,2675:205928,2681:215370,2847
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Shirley James' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Shirley James lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Shirley James describes her maternal grandmother, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Shirley James describes her maternal grandmother, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Shirley James describes the history of her family's home

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Shirley James remembers her maternal grandfather

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Shirley James describes her mother

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Shirley James describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Shirley James remembers her father

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Shirley James describes her older brother

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Shirley James talks about her brother's U.S. Army career

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Shirley James remembers her younger brother

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Shirley James describes her earliest childhood memories

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Shirley James remembers her community in Georgetown, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Shirley James describes her grade school teachers

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Shirley James describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Shirley James recalls her activities during high school

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Shirley James remembers President John Fitzgerald Kennedy's assassination

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Shirley James describes her early work experiences

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Shirley James remembers applying to Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Shirley James describes her experiences at Spelman College

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Shirley James recalls her influences at Spelman College

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Shirley James remembers the Civil Rights Movement in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Shirley James recalls participating in a student exchange program

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Shirley James describes her experiences of racial discrimination

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Shirley James describes her social activities at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Shirley James recalls her activities after graduation from Spelman College

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Shirley James recalls becoming a counselor at Savannah State College in Savannah, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Shirley James describes the peer counseling program at Savannah State College

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Shirley James remembers retiring from Savannah State College

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Shirley James describes the history of The Savannah Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Shirley James talks about her presidency of The Savannah Tribune

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Shirley James talks about Jack and Jill of America, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Shirley James describes her organizational involvement

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Shirley James talks about her activities during retirement

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Shirley James shares a message to future generations

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Shirley James describes her children and their professions

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Shirley James talks about her husband and grandchildren

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$2

DAStory

1$7

DATitle
Shirley James recalls becoming a counselor at Savannah State College in Savannah, Georgia
Shirley James describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood
Transcript
Both you and your husband [HistoryMaker Robert James] graduate in 1970 from Harvard [Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts] and you moved to Atlanta [Georgia], is that right?$$Yes.$$Okay. And how long did you stay in Atlanta?$$We were in Atlanta approximately a year. Right after graduation in June we moved here and he worked for a year at Citizens and Southern Bank [The Citizens and Southern National Bank of Georgia]. I got to be a housewife and a mom, and then we moved to Savannah [Georgia] in August of '71 [1971].$$Okay. And you took a position, administrative counseling position at Savannah State University [Savannah State College; Savannah State University, Savannah, Georgia] (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Yes, I did.$$So, tell me about that position.$$Well, something that I loved, because that counseling, you know, was my area, my field, and Dr. Prince A. Jackson [HistoryMaker Prince Jackson, Jr.] was president at Savannah State University at the time, and he actually hired me. During that period I was probably the first trained counselor that they had on the campus, and as a result of that, he kind of challenged me within about a year or, within the first year, and it was twofold. One was to look at establishing or getting a grant together to establish a counseling center, because that was not anything that we had had. I worked initially out of what you call a student affairs office with the dean. His name was Nelson Freeman, so student affairs you know, encompasses everything that's outside of the academic area, and, but we didn't have anything specifically to address, like a center for counselors, so that was one of the challenges, and he paired me with Hinton Thomas [ph.], a person who was working in one of the, a federal funded program that had been housed at Savannah State University at the time, and the two of us got together and wrote the grant through Title III, so by 1972, we were able to get the counseling center started, and the second challenge that he had given me was to start an organization where students could be almost like paraprofessional peer counselors, because there was Dr. Lucy Cutlive [ph.]. I'm not sure what her married name is, her name now, but at the time it was Lucy Cutlive, and she was at Tennessee State University [Nashville, Tennessee].$$Cutlive? How do you spell that (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Cutlive. I think it's C-U-T-L-I-V-E.$$Okay.$$But I'll have to check that to be sure.$$Okay.$$But she did an address at Savannah State and talked about the students helping students at Tennessee State, and Dr. Jackson heard and he said, "Oh, this is something I'd like to have happen at Savannah State," so as a result of that, I was able to put together what we call a peer counseling program, which they served as student leaders during orientation, but they also served as peers and student-to-student counselors like throughout the year, so you selected upper classmen and we paired them, well not paired them, they would work with groups of new students coming in, so they may have two or twenty-five students that they were kind of responsible for, assisting through that first year of college to help them become acclimated to what college was about, so they would help him academically from a social side just all the way around. So, to this day and it is now 19--2007, the peer counseling program is still thriving at Savannah State University.$When you think about growing up, what sounds, sights, and smells come to your mind?$$(Laughter) The smells would be the smell of the International Paper Company; (laughter) the odor from that. I don't know if you've grown around, grown up in a town where you get this odor from pulp and from paper being made, so that is a pungent kind of sound, smell, and even to this day if you're driving into Georgetown [South Carolina], you know, even with all the new things with the environment and trying to control the atmosphere and all that, there's still that little thing that's there, so that's one of them. The other is like Christmastime; the kind of smells, you know, from making fruitcake and hog head cheese, turkey and dressing, you know, those kinds of smells, just from the kitchen, are things that I still can relate to or reminisce about and seemingly can still, you know, kind of smell chitlins (laughter), which I do love. Okay. You talk about sights. One of them is the beach, because we went to Pawleys Island [South Carolina] and to Atlantic Beach [South Carolina], but on Pawleys there was a beach called Frank's beach [McKenzie Beach], which was specifically for African Americans, and so it was kind of very well developed for that period of time and in the summers we would go to Frank's Beach for swimming. After we got older my Uncle Freddie [Fredrick Bessellieu], who grew up on Pawleys Island and from that area, would take us crabbing and clam hunting, and whatever we caught, you know, a lot of times we would eat it at the creek, eat a certain amount of it at the creek and then the rest of it we had to take back to the block to the neighborhood, because then we had this crab boil at night. Whatever, you know, we got we shared it with the neighbors, and so just the sight of the beach was one thing, and just the neighborhood, really. You know, just the sight of my neighborhood, really, was a good thing. Sound? That's kind of difficult, but what comes to mind right now that I'm thinking of is high school with the band and the orchestra, because I was able to participate in both; in the marching band, and we also had an orchestra. I played clarinet and I was able to ascend to first clarinet, so I'm listening to some of the things that we played as an orchestra, and going, like to state band competitions and actually winning. You know, a little school in Georgetown, South Carolina, Howard High School, but the band instructor that we had there, Mr. Ephraim [ph.], really just did so much for us and carried us so far and helped us to appreciate a lot of classical music. I still remember some of the symphonies and some of the parts that the clarinet would play in the symphonies and when I hear them now, I said, oh, you know, it's a good thing (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) And remember.$$Um-hm.

Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant

Jacquelyn Grant was born in Georgetown, South Carolina, on December 19, 1948. Attending Catholic school at an early age, Grant then moved on to public schools, graduating from Howard High School in 1966. From there, she attended Bennett College, the Turner Theological Seminary in Atlanta, Georgia, and earned her Ph.D. from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

Grant became involved with the Women's Studies Program at the Harvard Divinity School within the Women's Research Program in 1977. Her involvement there led to the creation of the Women's Studies in Religion Program, and she remained there until 1979. Grant founded the Center for Black Women in Church and Society at the Interdenominational Theological Center in 1981, where she continues to serve as director and professor. As a practicing minister, Grant has served as the assistant minister at Flipper Temple African Methodist Episcopal Church from 1980 to 1982. She is presently the assistant minister at the Victory African Methodist Episcopal Church in Atlanta.

A successful author, Grant has written or edited several books, including White Women's Christ and Black Women's Jesus: Feminist Christology and Womanist Response, the all-time best selling book released by Scholars Press, and her most recent book, Perspectives on Womanist Theology. Grant was the recipient of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Ministry Award in 1986 and has been nominated as the Woman of the Year in Religion by the Iota Phi Lambda Sorority. She also appears in Who's Who Among African Americans. Grant and her husband, the Reverend John Collier, live in Atlanta.

Accession Number

A2003.183

Sex

Female

Interview Date

8/12/2003

Last Name

Grant

Marital Status

Married

Organizations
Schools

Howard High School

Howard Adult Center & Optional School

Bennett College for Women

Interdenominational Theological Center

Union Theological Seminary

First Name

Jacquelyn

Birth City, State, Country

Georgetown

HM ID

GRA02

Favorite Season

Spring

State

South Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

San Francisco, California

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Interview Description
Birth Date

12/19/1948

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken

Short Description

Academic administrator, minister, and theology professor Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant (1948 - ) is the founder of the Center for Black Women in Church & Society.

Employment

Women's Studies in Religion Program, Harvard Divinity School

Black Women in Church and Society

Flipper Temple A.M.E. Church

Victory A.M.E. Church

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about her maternal grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes her mother's beauty shop

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about lessons her mother learned while running her beauty shop in South Carolina

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes her mother's training as a cosmetologist

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls her paternal grandfather's work

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant states her parents' names and talks about where they lived

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about her father's occupation, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about her father's occupation, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about her siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes the Geechee/Gullah dialect she heard growing up in the Lowcountry of South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant reflects upon efforts to preserve Geechee/Gullah culture

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls her early memories of segregation and finding refuge in the church

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls the neighborhood community center she grew up near and games she played as a child

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls her elementary school years and controversy around the name of her high school

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls spending her lunch time with her best friend or reading alone during lunch

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls various teachers and receiving encouragement in her studies

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls her responsibilities at Arnett A.M.E. Church in Georgetown, South Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes the importance of the A.M.E. church in her childhood

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about attending a summer science program at Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina as a high schooler

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about her studies and extracurricular activities at Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about deciding to pursue work in the church

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains why she was interested in pursuing studies at seminary

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant argues that the A.M.E. Church was founded on theological differences

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains why she decided to study theology over Christian education

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls her professors at Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls beginning to consider questions about gender in theological study

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about HistoryMaker James Cone

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s lived religion

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant recalls beginning to consider questions about gender and theology

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about the role of black women in the black church and challenging patriarchy through theological inquiry

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about black women's full participation in the black church, particularly as bishops

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about the Center for Black Women in Church and Society

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about programs within the Center for Black Women in Church and Society

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains womanism, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains womanism, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about divisions between black and white women in the abolitionist and women's suffrage movements

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains the need to articulate a specifically black feminism

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes her first book, 'White Women's Christ and Black Women's Jesus,' pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes her first book, 'White Women's Christ and Black Women's Jesus,' pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant challenges the notion of white theology as being normative

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant reflects on prosperity and faith

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant reflects on the relationship of womanism to black art and Afrocentric aesthetics

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about black people's reactions to seeing themselves in religious art

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant remembers a positive change in how black children viewed black religious art

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains the different arguments about the place of people of African descent in Christianity

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant reflects on a summit on black religion that she participated in in Detroit, Michigan

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant reflects on the need for interfaith and intra-faith dialogue

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes her hopes and concerns for the black community

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant encourages viewers to learn the histories of unsung black women

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant talks about gay rights and the black church

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes how West African traditions have survived in black religion in South Carolina

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains her personal religious philosophy, pt. 1

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains her personal religious philosophy, pt. 2

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant lists and describes books she was developing at the time of the interview

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes how she would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$5

DAStory

1$3

DATitle
Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant describes the Geechee/Gullah dialect she heard growing up in the Lowcountry of South Carolina
Reverend Dr. Jacquelyn Grant explains the need to articulate a specifically black feminism
Transcript
Just off camera we were saying your family could be what we would call Geechees, right?$$Well we come from the area of--it's called Lowcountry, Lowcountry, South Carolina. Now we're from the City of Georgetown [South Carolina], but as I always say, all of Georgetown really is country, but technically, we come from the city, the town--in city area. But the areas, outlining areas, you know, the islands, Pawleys Island [South Carolina], Murrells Inlet [South Carolina], you know, right there on the--Sandy Island [South Carolina]. When I was growing up, the impression was that people from those areas were--the word that was used was Geechee, Geechee, Geechee. Now, to me what that has referenced to is a dialect though, a way of talking, a way of being. The dialects are quite clear, you know. I really think it's a--and you know, the Charleston area, particularly the John Island area, sea island area where you get the very heavy dialect that comes out of those areas. You know there are some who would say that you get some of that even in the towns, even in a place like Georgetown. But there's a heavy dosage of it that comes out of the--out of those islands You know, I don't know how to, I mean, outside of that context, there may be many who would say, you know, that you're all categorized in that. I recall my eighth grade teacher, English teacher, asking me where did you get your accent, where did you learn how to talk? I said, what do you mean, where I--I got it from my mother, I guess. And I said what did she mean, she said well, you don't sound--you don't talk like you come from this area. Well, at that point, eighth grade, I had never been out of South Carolina. And so I really had no idea what she was talking about. But she said, you don't talk like you came from this area. I'm assuming that that meant that I did not have the heavy dialect that you would find from persons coming from, you know, the surrounding areas, or even have some persons who are in the Georgetown context themselves. So it's really interesting too because there--I think when most people--when I was growing--when most people talk about that it's not--it's certainly not considered to be something to emulate. It's considered something to get away from. But the fascinating thing about it is that I really think that that dialect is one of the most beautiful--beautiful songs that you could hear anyway. I went to school at Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina, and there was a classmate of mine from the Charleston area and she had such a beautiful melodic voice that was described as Gullah, you know.$$Now that's another word for that, Gullah, Geechee.$$Gullah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And I don't understand how anybody could laugh at that. It was--it's so beautiful, you know, but of course you know, we live in a context where our culture is not always appreciated because we're taught so much that there's nothing of value in our own culture so we got to always seek to be like the other. But I think when we attempt to devaluate those aspects of our culture, we do ourselves a disservice. We can't see the beauty that's within our own culture.$You know, as I always say if the women's movement did not solve the woman question, certainly not for African American--for black women. If that were the case there would never have been a need for folks like Septima Clark or Fannie Lou Hamer or Dorothy Cotton or any of those African American women who were involved in voter registration movement or the freedom school movement in South Carolina or any of the other board of registration movements that were established throughout the south. Woman suffrage in 1920s meant white women's suffrage. It did not mean black women's suffrage, and so you still had in the decades to follow the very basic struggle for the right to vote for not only African American men but also African American women. You know so the tension has always been there. And it persisted even throughout the '60s [1960s] as the new wave of feminism got its start. Still toward the end of the '60s [1960s] and beginning of the '70s [1970s] you did not find a lot of participation of non-white persons in the feminist movement. During the Civil Rights Movement, yes, you did have the involvement of some white women in that movement then many of whom became disgruntled because of the sexism practices in the Black Power Movement itself. But even after some of those women made their exit, you know, there was still tension because many minority women interpreted the work and activity of these white women as basically middle class, white women seeking to advance the agenda of middle class white women, you know. And so the tension was always there. There were always problems with white women that women defined their movement and then coming back and backing up, you know, get some black--initially black then later on, you know, Asian and Hispanic women government, you know, to provide some color into the movement. But minority women never really participating at ground level in terms of defining the movement. That theory was always there and that why you had folks even when Black Women in Church and Society was initially established who were still in the "I'm not a feminist", but mode, you know. They would persistently say I'm not a feminist but and everything that comes after but are feminist issues. But the point is to make a distinction between what African American women were concerned about and what white women were addressing in their "white middle class movement."

Florida Yeldell

Educator Florida Jackson Yeldell lived out her father's dream in her life and career. Born in Georgetown, South Carolina, on January 2, 1915, Yeldell grew up in the town until she went to boarding school at Morris College at age fifteen. Yeldell remained until she earned her A.B. in English from the school in 1936 before moving to Andrews, South Carolina, where she taught fifth- and sixth-graders for two years.

Yeldell's father, a mail carrier, told his daughter of dreaming about returning to school to study history, which fascinated him because their Georgetown neighborhood was particularly rich in it. During the Great Depression, Yeldell did just that, receiving a scholarship from the National Youth Administration to study history at Howard University, where she earned an M.A. in 1941. She worked for the government during World War II and then embarked on a long career teaching at colleges in Texas. She first taught social studies at Butler College and taught U.S. history at Jarvis Christian College and Texas College. Yeldell finally settled down at Prairie View A&M, where she taught courses in Western civilization, U.S. history and social studies until retiring in 1979. Even after retiring, she continued to teach, working at Houston Community College, and lived in Texas for ten years before returning to her childhood home of South Carolina.

In retirement, Yeldell keeps active by volunteering to teach history. She gave guided tours at Brook Green Garden and worked with the Friends of the Library. Under the aegis of the Senior Scholars, Yeldell and David Drayton, principal of the last black-only school in Georgetown County, began teaching a course on the history of blacks in Georgetown County. For her work in teaching the history her father loved, Yeldell has been honored by Coastal Carolina University.

Yeldell passed away on May 25, 2006, with one son, five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Accession Number

A2002.221

Sex

Female

Interview Date

12/5/2002

Last Name

Yeldell

Maker Category
Marital Status

Divorced

Middle Name

Jackson

Occupation
Organizations
Schools

Howard High School

Morris College

California State University, Chico

Howard University

First Name

Florida

Birth City, State, Country

Georgetown

HM ID

YEL01

Favorite Season

Fall, Spring

Sponsor

Knight Foundation

State

South Carolina

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

South Carolina

Interview Description
Birth Date

1/2/1915

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Myrtle Beach

Country

USA

Favorite Food

All Food

Death Date

5/25/2006

Short Description

History professor Florida Yeldell (1915 - 2006 ) has taught history at a number of colleges throughout Texas, including Prairie View A&M University, Jarvis Christian College, and Texas College.

Employment

Butler College

Jarvis Christian College

Texas College

Prairie View A&M University

Houston Community College

Main Sponsor
Favorite Color

Pink

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Florida Yeldell's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Florida Yeldell lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Florida Yeldell talks about her great-grandfather's experience as a slave on the Hagley rice plantation

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Florida Yeldell describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Florida Yeldell describes her mother's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Florida Yeldell describes her father's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Florida Yeldell describes the sights, sounds, and smells of her childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Florida Yeldell describes her childhood experience as the only black family in her neighborhood

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Florida Yeldell describes her segregated neighborhood in Georgetown, South Carolina, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Florida Yeldell describes her segregated neighborhood in Georgetown, South Carolina, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Florida Yeldell talks about her teachers at The Howard School in Georgetown, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Florida Yeldell talks about enrolling at Morris College boarding school in Sumter, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Florida Yeldell talks about her experience at Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Florida Yeldell talks about her experience at Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Florida Yeldell describes the courses she enjoyed at Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Florida Yeldell describes her experiences learning about African American literature at Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Florida Yeldell describes social life at Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Florida Yeldell describes her interest in becoming a journalist

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Florida Yeldell describes her enrollment at Howard University in 1938

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Florida Yeldell describes enrolling in a history graduate program at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Florida Yeldell describes her history professors at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Florida Yeldell describes the history of slavery in Georgetown County, South Carolina, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Florida Yeldell describes the history of slavery in Georgetown County, South Carolina, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Florida Yeldell describes the history of Georgetown County, South Carolina during Reconstruction

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Florida Yeldell describes the beginning of her career as a professor

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Florida Yeldell describes her career as a professor

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Florida Yeldell describes the highlights of her teaching career

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Florida Yeldell talks about some of her favorite figures in American history

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Florida Yeldell shares her view on focusing on the positive aspects of history, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Florida Yeldell shares her view on focusing on the positive aspects of history, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Florida Yeldell reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Florida Yeldell describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Florida Yeldell narrates her photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$4

DAStory

2$1

DATitle
Florida Yeldell describes enrolling in a history graduate program at Howard University in Washington, D.C.
Florida Yeldell describes the highlights of her teaching career
Transcript
But after the first examination in the class, I got full admission to the graduate school because--I shall always remember it. This was a class in the French Revolution, and I did not have any money to buy books. So, what I would do, I would go to the congressional library [Library of Congress] and spend all day Saturday in the congressional library, go back again on Sunday and spend all day in the congressional library. And of course, that to me was exciting and fun, the congressional library. I didn't, I mean it didn't--it didn't even faze me that I didn't have books. They had everything, and I could read whatever I wanted to read there, in addition to the fact that Howard University [Washington, D.C.] had a good library, and during the week, I would use the library at Howard University. But that examination, the first examination in the class, when the professors gave our papers back, and this was in Dr. Logan's class, Dr. Rayford Logan's class, he taught that, the best mark in the class. And he, from that moment I think he was impressed with me as a student. And I don't know how my husband came. I don't know whether Dr. Logan said I had the best mark in the class, or whether John sat next to me and saw that he'd written it, "The best mark in the class. I've never had a woman to make a higher grade than I did in class." I didn't say anything. It wasn't necessary to say anything. And he looked at me, and I looked at him. And years later, we were married. And years later, we were divorced.$$Okay (laughter).$$But that's how I, that's how I met John; I met John in the French Revolution. But after that, I received a letter from the registrar's office saying that I had been given full admission to the graduate program at Howard.$So, what are the highlights of your teaching career? Do you have any... is there anything that really sticks out? Any--?$$I enjoyed teaching, because I was always learning. I enjoyed teaching because it brought me in contact with people, and I learned people. And I think I grew up in teaching. And I am very grateful that my father [Robert James Jackson] made the suggestion that he did, and very grateful that I did not have the opportunities to become the foreign correspondent for The New York Times; it could not have been as exciting as teaching. I've enjoyed everywhere that I have lived. I've met wonderful people, and in some instances have made very good friends. The course... I've taught... I laugh and say I grew up in a time when having a master's degree--at first for employment--the only thing they looked at was that you had the degree, and I did not always teach in my field. I remember when I went to Butler College [Tyler, Texas], on one occasion... what did I teach? Public speaking. What did I know about public speaking? And I remember when I went to Prairie View [Prairie View Agricultural and Mechanical College in Prairie View, Texas] to teach--it was either Prairie View or Butler. They wanted to give me Statistics. No way. Now that's when I really put my foot down. Now, government, I didn't mind. There was enough relationship between government and History to... And I welcomed those experiences, because for me they became learning experiences. But the only thing that I ever really refused to teach was Statistics. I... no, no. No, no. But I've taught English, History... and while I was at Prairie View, I went back to school at California State University when I was fifty-eight, and earned a master's degree in Geography. I love geography, because I always felt that you could never teach history without geography. The setting and time and the place to a considerable extent, determine what happens there. But the course that I enjoyed the most teaching was World History. And I feel it's unfortunate that we do not teach more of that. And I realize there's a great deal of research that needs to be done there, and I just wish I could live long enough to work at that. That is really the love of my life. All over the world man is intelligent, and has built civilizations, wherever he is, that reflect his geography, reflect what he comes to know. And that is just a part of the history of mankind. But we need to know the whole of the history of mankind before we can come to live in peace and with respect and appreciation for each other. What we are taught, and how we are taught are very important. And if we limit and continuously limit, we become smaller and smaller, and we need to become larger and larger. And I would make World History one of the required courses in the general education of all students. And I know they'd want to shoot me.$$Why would they want to shoot you?$$Students frequently don't like history. And sometimes they don't because we have taught dates. And dates are important, but they're only relatively important; it's the incidence and the quality of what is at a place, or what happens at a place that is important.