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Donald Lyons, Sr.

Physicist and physics professor Donald R. Lyons was born in 1954 in Stamps, Arkansas. His father, Patrick Donald Lyons, Jr., was a bricklayer; his mother, a housewife. After attending J.L. Jones Elementary School and J.A. Phillips Jr., High School, Lyons graduated from, Webster High School in 1972. While in high school, Lyons enrolled in the Upward Bound program. With his parents unable to pay for college, the Upward Bound program provided Lyons with the opportunity to earn college credit prior to graduation, gain experience working in a university laboratory, and earn a full academic scholarship to attend Grambling State University. Lyons graduated from Grambling State University in 1976 with his B.S. degrees in physics and mathematics. He then enrolled in Stanford University where he studied under Nobel Laureates Arthur L. Schawlow and Theodor Hansch and received his M.S. degree in physics in 1978 and his Ph.D. degree in physics in 1982.

From 1975 to 1976, Lyons served as a research fellow at Bell Telephone Laboratories in the Solar Physics Group, and as a researcher at Argonne National Laboratory in the Solid State Physics Department. He then joined Corning, Inc. in 1982 and was appointed as a senior scientist in the Applied Physics Department. Lyons moved to California in 1985 and was hired as a physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in the Applied Technology Section until 1990. Lyons continued his career in industry as scientist for Grumman Aerospace Corporation where he directed the Sensor Sciences and Materials Structures Groups at the Grumman Corporate Research Center. In 1993, Lyons joined the faculty of Hampton University and was named the University Endowed Professor of Physics. At Hampton University, Lyons also served as the director of the Research Center for Optical Physics.

Lyons has successfully applied for and received several U.S. Patents and fifteen research grants and contracts related to the use of distributed Bragg reflection sensors for commercial applications. In addition, he has created projects for the Department of Defense, the National Aeronautic and Space Administration, and the National Institutes of Health. Lyons was recognized by the Upward Bound program for directing successful programs that center on mentoring undergraduate and graduate students in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields. The American Physical Society and the Virginia Business Observer have both featured Lyons and recognized his contributions to science and technology.

Donald R. Lyons was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on May 20, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.135

Sex

Male

Interview Date

5/20/2013

Last Name

Lyons

Maker Category
Middle Name

R.

Occupation
Organizations
Search Occupation Category
First Name

Donald

Birth City, State, Country

Stamps

HM ID

LYO02

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Arkansas

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Virginia

Birth Date

4/2/1954

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Hampton

Country

United States

Favorite Food

None

Short Description

Physicist Donald Lyons, Sr. (1954 - ) is the University Endowed Professor of Physics and director of the Research Center for Optical Physics at Hampton University.

Employment

Bell Laboratories

Corning Incorporated

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Grumman Corporation

Hampton University

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:403,3:807,8:3231,59:6195,69:12415,174:12820,180:15770,201:27070,355:28726,394:29158,402:31606,458:35814,472:38550,494:45004,561:49886,600:57371,749:57655,754:59927,863:64542,940:74546,1102:74986,1109:79298,1184:83346,1250:83874,1258:93566,1308:93822,1313:97178,1345:97522,1350:101700,1406:105660,1432:105992,1437:118076,1560:119748,1580:122104,1619:122712,1626:131536,1686:142416,1780:143892,1821:145122,1840:147886,1863:148402,1870:152852,1902:155171,1946:155645,1953:157580,1972:157928,1979:162976,2008:163531,2014:166639,2054:167194,2063:167749,2069:175161,2135:178318,2189:178780,2200:192772,2302:201236,2332:201500,2337:201830,2343:202622,2356:203876,2385:204140,2390:204536,2397:212490,2493$0,0:838,11:1324,19:1729,25:19545,325:19861,330:29008,432:29398,558:52834,833:53536,845:73128,1132:75585,1162:76972,1189:77264,1194:110500,1786:117200,1858:121360,1969:125695,2035:126120,2041:139715,2190:140170,2198:140430,2203:144184,2255:156686,2419:156994,2424:157379,2430:169462,2589:169984,2600:170506,2610:170738,2615:171086,2627:171608,2639:172594,2672:179897,2777:182263,2835:184993,2860:188448,2888:193432,2989:193877,2995:197488,3008:199760,3045:207348,3121:207750,3129:208085,3135:215254,3290:216527,3317:219274,3369:219542,3374:230753,3496:231167,3504:231719,3514:233390,3530
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Donald Lyons' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons describes his mother's family

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons talks about his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons talks about his father's growing up

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Donald Lyons talks about his father's club

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Donald Lyons talks about his parents

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Donald Lyons describes when he decided to become a physicist

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Donald Lyons talks about his father's talents

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons talks about his father's building projects

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons describes his parents' personalities and who he takes after

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons talks about living with his neighbor growing up

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons talks about the church he attended as a youth

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons describes the sights, sounds and smells of growing up

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons talks about his elementary school

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Donald Lyons talks about the disturbances in his schools

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Donald Lyons describes segregation in Minden, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Donald Lyons talks about being in the band in middle and high school

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons describes his experience with Upward Bound in high school

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons describes his approach to learning while at Grambling State University

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons talks about his discipline in learning at Grambling State University

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons describes his time at the Bell Summer Internship Program

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons talks about the African American physicists he met at the Bell Summer Internship Program

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons talks about his work at the Bell Summer Internship Program

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons talks about his time at Grambling State University

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons describes his summer working at Argonne National Laboratory

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons describes why he chose Stanford University for graduate school

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons describes becoming a Xerox Fellow at Stanford University

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons describe how a laser is formed

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons talks about his graduate research on intermodulation and polarization modulation

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Donald Lyons talks about his first talk before the American Physical Society

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons describes why he chose to concentrate on optical physics

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons discusses his doctoral dissertation

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons describes being hired by Corning

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons describes how he designed and built his laboratory at Corning

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons describes learning the patent development process at Corning

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons describes writing the patent on the Braggs grating wavemeter

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Donald Lyons talks about his research on nerve fibers

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons talks about the transition from Corning to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons talks about being demoted at Livermore National Laboratory for his research

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons describes the transition from Livermore National Laboratory to Grumman Aerospace Corporation

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons talks about his patent at Grumman Aerospace Corporation

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons describes the transition from Grumman Aerospace Corporation to Hampton University

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons talks about the physics department at Hampton University

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons talks about historically black colleges and universities

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons talks about his grants and projects at Hampton University

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons talks about professors at Hampton University

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons explains why he chose to become a professor at Hampton University

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons describes his work on fiber optic artificial nerves

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons describes how artificial fiber optic nerves interact with human nerves

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Donald Lyons talks about his inability to procure funding for his research on artificial fiber optic nerves

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons talks about his mentoring of students at Hampton University

Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Donald Lyons talks about teaching and research at Hampton University

Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Donald Lyons describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Donald Lyons reflects on his legacy

Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Donald Lyons reflects on his life

Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Donald Lyons talks about his family

Tape: 8 Story: 7 - Donald Lyons talks about the mother figures in his life

Tape: 8 Story: 8 - Donald Lyons talks about how he would like to be remembered.

Tape: 9 Story: 1 - Donald Lyons describes his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$3

DAStory

3$2

DATitle
Donald Lyons talks about living with his neighbor growing up
Donald Lyons describes his approach to learning while at Grambling State University
Transcript
At what juncture did you go to live with Mrs. [Trillie B.] Jones?$$I think I went to live with--I'm going to call her Mama from here on out I think I went to live at Mama's house when I was about six years old. I didn't live there all the time, I would stay at my house and I would stay at mama's house and I would go back to my house, you know, and be back and forth up to a point. But the thing I remember about being at Mama's house was that it was so peaceful. No noise, you know, very quiet and like I said she actually got me when she was about sixty years old. She had had-- I had stayed with her when I was a baby but I didn't remember. She took care of me when I was a baby for a little while. My mother [Ethel Bell Pearson] went to stay with her for while because of the domestic problems.$$I was going to ask if that was kind of-(simultaneous)$$That was, that was the motivation.$$--the gauge of when you were going to be there was the domestic issues.$$Right. So I was a baby, she had to leave in a hurry, she felt she had to leave in a hurry so she went and stayed with my mama, I mean I went and stayed with mama. She took me, She took me up there and she took care of me.$$Your other brothers and sisters too or just you?$$No just me because I was a baby, the older ones were able to some extent fend for themselves, not that much but more so than I was.$$Tell us about Mrs. Jones, what was she like and--?$$Very interesting personality. She had, she was-- Before she was a Jones she was a Smith. She outlived both of her husbands. I never met Mr. Smith because he was already deceased by the time I knew him, by the time I was conscious of knowing Mama. Mr. Jones, we called him grandfather, he was her second husband and so the thing I could tell you about her personality was that she was a very strong willed Christian woman. Very strong physically at age sixty she was still seemingly to have as much energy as a twenty year old. She was always working; she would get up at three o'clock in the morning and go to bed at seven or eight o'clock at night.$$So did she work at home or did she--?$$She had retired by the time I knew her. She said she used to work on an aircraft, so I don't know the history of that but she was born in 1892 and she had seen a lot of life before she had me there. The main thing about her is that, like I said, she was a very strong Christian and so we lived in church and so that was a big part of my life when I was growing up.$So did you stay in touch with the Upward Bound teacher at Grambling [State University, Grambling, Louisiana]?$$I did for some years but after awhile it started to fade--once I finished Grambling and went to Stanford [University, Stanford, California] there was no time to do anything. I mean just no time, you know. We can talk about that a little bit more.$$So Grambling--Emmett Johnson taught you precalculus. Is this when you first start at Grambling?$$No this was in high school.$$Oh you are still in high school.$$I'm still in high school and then I started learning calculus. Then when I took calculus, you know, it was "A" in all the math courses. So calculus and took linear algebra and took differential equations under Emmett Johnson and I told somebody the other day because they were asking me, I don't know who was asking this question I said you know, one of the--another profound turning point for me was we took linear algebra we had done, the three of us those three high school students, we stayed together all the way through. They both ended up being math majors and then they got married and then I was a physics major, but I actually started to outperform them just because we had one cal [calculus] class where the guy would come in and just give a pop quiz every time. And so, gave a pop quiz I always failed it, you know. I said, "Wait a minute, so he says he's going to give a pop quiz." I say," I don't how to pass a pop quiz," the only way I could pass is to just do all the problems, so I just did all of the problems, all of them. So when he would give a quiz I could just fly through those problems in my head, I would be finished in no time perfect scores from then on out. But that was the trick, the trick was to do all the problems before he even gave them to you. So he could pick any problem it wouldn't matter because once you do them there was a technique for solving calculus problems; there are techniques for solving everything. You know, once you do them, I mean people had worked these things out centuries ago. He would give a pop quiz and they would say, "How do you do so well on them?" And I said, "Do all the problems."$$Now did anybody else catch on to your techniques and do the same thing?$$Nobody did it, I'm sure they understood it but I don't know why they didn't do it, I don't know why. Because sometimes there was no--they would have examples then they would have the problems and there is something about math that after awhile you start seeing a pattern. I can't really explain past that but there is a pattern. A pattern is something that people have laid out in terms of theorems and stuff like that, but in your head it's a pattern and so I caught the pattern by doing all the problems.$$Now that's essential to my learning math. We've been told by people that involved in math is that you have got to-- it's sequential, you have got to learn one thing before you can another and as you go on you-- You can't start with algebra without knowing fractions, you know, that sort of thing. So you're going ahead and doing the whole problem, so this is labor intensive, of course, so even if somebody knew how to do it, it's not a trick, it's labor intensive.$$It's not a trick.$$You have to do all the problems.$$It's labor intensive and I still ask, sometimes I ask my son, I say, you know, they have a lot more to do, I think, in high school than we had but I said, you know, "What else do you have to do? You're in school, school is about learning."

Barbara Wright-Pryor

Classical soloist, educator, and music critic Barbara Wright-Pryor was born Barbara Wright in Stamps, Arkansas, to Bernyce Eleanor Hayes Wright and Joseph Dudley Wright. Growing up in Chicago’s Ida B. Wells Projects, she idolized Marian Anderson. Wright-Pryor attended Willard School and graduated from Wendell Phillips Elementary and High Schools in 1951. A mezzo-contralto, Wright-Pryor studied voice as she pursued an undergraduate degree from Roosevelt University, Chicago State University, and the Chicago Conservatory of Music, where she majored in vocal performance. She received her M.A. degree, magna cum laude, from Roosevelt University.

As a mezzo-contralto recitalist and soloist of oratorio, her first performance was with the Dorian Choral Ensemble. In 1961, she performed with Irving Bunton’s Chicago Concert Chorale. Duke Ellington featured the group in his 1963 My People musical revue, celebrating the accomplishments of Blacks in the one hundred years since Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. In 1968, Wright-Pryor was choral director for Ellington’s Sacred Concert. Over the years, Wright-Pryor has performed with the members of Chicago’s Lyric Opera, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Civic Orchestra of Chicago, South Shore Philharmonic, Southside Family Chamber Orchestra and String Quartet, and the Chicago Park District Orchestra. Her concert stage performances have featured Sir Michael Tippett’s A Child of Our Time; Rossini’s Stabat Mater; J. S. Bach’s Cantata No. 54 for Contralto and Orchestra, Christmas Oratorio, and Mass in B Minor; Handel’s Messiah and the works of Mozart, Mendelssohn, and Verdi. Wright-Pryor has performed Saul of Tarsus by Betty Jackson King, and in addition to Betty Jackson King, composers Rollo Dilworth, Barry K. Elmore, Robert L. Morris and Howard Savage have dedicated compositions to her. For the 1998 Sixteenth International Duke Ellington Conference, Wright-Pryor served as producer/director and vocalist to restage Ellington’s lost 1963 My People musical revue. Her musical accomplishments were achieved while serving for thirty-five years as counselor-educator with the Chicago Public Schools and adjunct professor at DePaul University.

A charter member of the Community Advisory Council of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO), Wright-Pryor helps monitor the CSO’s progress in achieving its diversity agenda. She also serves on the Artistic Planning Committee of the Chicago Symphony. Wright-Pryor is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and for over a decade, she has been president of the Chicago Music Association, which was founded as the first branch of the National Association of Negro Musicians, Inc. in 1919. Wright-Pryor was honored by the Society for the Advancement of the Vivian G. Harsh Collection of Afro-American History and Literature of the Chicago Public Library in 1999, and they have requested her papers. She was inducted into Wendell Phillips Elementary and High Schools’ Hall of Fame and received an honorary Doctor of Music degree in 1999. An expert and critic of African American contributions to classical music, Wright-Pryor serves as the classical music critic for the Chicago Crusader.

A soloist at Northfield Community and St. Mark United Methodist Churches, Wright-Pryor is married to organist George Williams.

Accession Number

A2006.106

Sex

Female

Interview Date

9/24/2006

Last Name

Wright-Pryor

Maker Category
Schools

Wendell Phillips Academy High School

Wendell Phillips Elementary School

Roosevelt University

Chicago State University

Chicago Conservatory of Music

Willard Elementary School

First Name

Barbara

Birth City, State, Country

Stamps

HM ID

WRI02

Favorite Season

Fall, Spring

State

Arkansas

Favorite Vacation Destination

Southern California

Favorite Quote

You Can Do Anything That You Want To Do. It Takes Work.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Birth Date

5/30/1934

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

United States

Favorite Food

None

Short Description

School counselor and classical singer Barbara Wright-Pryor (1934 - ) was a classical mezzo-contralto soloist. In addition to her singing career, Wright-Pryor taught in the Chicago Public Schools, was a member of the Board of Trustees for the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, served as president of the Chicago Music Association, and was a music critic for the Chicago Crusader.

Employment

Chicago Public Schools

Chicago Crusader

DePaul University

Favorite Color

Green, Pink

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Barbara Wright-Pryor's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Barbara Wright-Pryor lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her mother's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her mother's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her mother's education in Hope, Arkansas

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her mother's education at Arkadelphia Presbyterian Academy

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describers her maternal uncles

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her family's connection with Maya Angelou

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes Maya Angelou's family in Stamps, Arkansas, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes Maya Angelou's family in Stamps, Arkansas, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes how her parents met

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her family's musical heritage

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her family's move to Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Barbara Wright-Pryor reflects upon the negative portrayal of Stamps, Arkansas

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Barbara Wright-Pryor recalls her homes in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her parents' separation

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her parents' professions in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers the community in the Ida B. Wells Homes, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers the community in the Ida B. Wells Homes, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers Chicago's Wendell Phillips Elementary School

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers Chicago's Wendell Phillips High School

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her high school extracurricular activities

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Barbara Wright-Pryor reflects upon her high school experience in Chicago

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers hearing William Warfield sing

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her marriage and college education

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers Marian Anderson and Leontyne Price

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes how voices change with age

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Barbara Wright-Pryor recalls her performances in the Chicago church circuit

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers working with Duke Ellington, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers working with Duke Ellington, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Barbara Wright-Pryor recalls recreating Duke Ellington's 'My People', pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Barbara Wright-Pryor recalls recreating Duke Ellington's 'My People', pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Barbara Wright-Pryor shares the history of the Chicago Music Association, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Barbara Wright-Pryor shares the history of the Chicago Music Association, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Barbara Wright-Pryor recalls her work with Theodore Charles Stone

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes Theodore Charles Stone's career

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes the history of African American composers

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes how African American composers were ignored

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Barbara Wright-Pryor explains the differences between jazz and classical music

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Barbara Wright-Pryor lists her favorite composers and genres of music

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Barbara Wright-Pryor reflects upon her life

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Barbara Wright-Pryor reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Barbara Wright-Pryor talks about her children

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Barbara Wright-Pryor recalls a former student at George T. Donoghue Elementary School

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Barbara Wright-Pryor describes how she would like to be remembered

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DATitle
Barbara Wright-Pryor remembers working with Duke Ellington, pt. 1
Barbara Wright-Pryor shares the history of the Chicago Music Association, pt. 1
Transcript
In 1961, Irving Bunton, who is now, he's a retired supervisor of music with the Chicago Public Schools, but he formulated, called together singers and colleagues of his to form a musical unit called Chicago Concert Choral and we did sacred works, Poulenc [Francis Poulenc] 'Mass,' ['Mass in G Major'] we did various, Mozart [Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart] 'Requiem,' we did various oratorios and classical works similar to what the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Chorus does, but this was an opportunity for blacks who were classically trained or interested in seeing classical music, for a great number of them to come together in music. At that time, in 1962, Duke Ellington was in the process of, he had been commissioned to write a show to commemorate the centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation and our organization, our Chicago Concert Choral was one of the choral groups that went to audition to be the chorus in this particular work and Duke selected us as the choral group to appear in his musical revue entitled 'My People.' And, as I said, it commemorated the hundredth anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and it showed the progress that Negroes had made. That was the terminology of the day in that one hundred years in the arts, in literature, in science, in, in all arenas, but especially in music. And, as a result of that, being in that, in the chorus and being part of the cast because the chorus was used to depict various scenes and the like, in 1968, when Duke came to do his sacred concerts that he had begun at that time, he said that, you know, the first, that first portion of his life he had done jazz and, in fact, he didn't call it jazz. Music is a beyond category. Those are his words. Music is, there are only two kinds of music, good music and bad music, and so, and that was his terminology as well. But he said he was going to spend the rest of his life because he had been so blessed in doing sacred music, so then he did these sacred concerts one [A Concert of Sacred Music], two [Second Sacred Concert], and three [Third Sacred Concert]. Well, he was contracted to come to Chicago [Illinois] to do a sacred concert at the Auditorium Theatre [Chicago, Illinois] and I was sought as the choral director to train the chorus for this performance. It was November 8, I think, 1968. I was only five years old. I was just a prodigy (laughter) and that was the, the 1963 experience with 'My People' and the 1968 experience of being his choral director were the highlights of my life, to work with this genius who had composed more than three thousand pieces in his lifetime, and (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) I remember from that period seeing him on television, on Sunday morning, on CBS, with, I think the New York Philharmonic, or something, you know.$$Yes. He was an amazing person. I just adored him. In fact when Mercedes [HistoryMaker Mercedes Ellington], his granddaughter, and I worked together at later years. I told her, you know, "I was in love with your grandfather," (laughter) and we had a big laugh about that. And, in love as far as being, adoring him and seeing him for, as the person he was. He was a magnificent person. He was a humanitarian. He was truly America's cultural ambassador. They designated that he was and he was. I mean, he did state department tours and the like, and just spread, he was just full of love, just full of it and embraced all sorts of humanity, gave dignity to people in all walks of life. He was a magnificent person.$Tell us about the, about the, I'm still trying to get the name right, like I had it wrong earlier, but the Chicago Music Association and its origins in 1919; that's a long time ago (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) It's a long time ago. Yes, for the very reasons that we were talking about, the discrimination against blacks and the performing arts, Nora Douglas Holt, who was the music critic for the Chicago Defender, called together musicians, black musicians here in Chicago [Illinois], and they were all professionally trained and to form an organization in which blacks could perform on stage concerts and classical music and create music themselves, and to promote the use of a Negro spiritual as indigenous form of music to this country. She called musicians up around Chicago and they established this organization called Chicago Music Association. It was to provide performance venues for blacks who were traditionally left out when it came to performing on major concert halls and opera, opera stages. At the same time, or in fact prior to 1919, these series of meetings took place before 1919, but Chicago Music Association was officially formed on March 3 of 1919. At the same time that all of this was going on, Henry Grant [Henry L. Grant] in Washington, D.C. was attempting to form an organization composed of black musicians nationally, Negro musicians, that was the terminology then, Negro musicians nationally, for the same reason. Incidentally, Henry Grant was Duke Ellington's high school music teacher in Washington, D.C. And he actually was the first president of the National Association of Negro Musicians [NANM] after it was formed. Well, they heard about this fledging, fledgling group in Chicago and they contacted Nora Douglas Holt, and said we'd like to come and meet with you, and so musicians came from all around the country and met in Chicago during the last of July and the first of August 1919, during the most horrendous race riot that ever occurred here in Chicago. They met at the Wabash Avenue YMCA [Chicago, Illinois], and from accounts of the recording secretary that we have in our archives, they could hear the noise of the riot that was going on further to the north, the shots and various things that were going on. They met and they hammered out and they saw and were led by Chicago Music Association as to how they came into formation and the purposes and what they did, their constitution and the like, and out of these meetings, the National Association of Negro Musicians was formed and Chicago became the first chapter, even though it preceded, so NANM was formed like August 9th. Earl [HistoryMaker Earl Calloway] can correct me. He remembers those dates. It was either August 8th or August 9th of 1919, and Chicago Music Association was formed March 3, 1919.