A MDAH Publication | Volume 44 No. 4 | April 2002
Mississippi Historical Society Awards Prizes and Elects Officers
At its annual meeting, held in Hattiesburg from February 28 through March 2, the Mississippi Historical Society honored distinguished friends of Mississippi history and elected new officers for 2002-2003.
Yasuhiro Katagiri, associate professor of American history and government at Tokai University in Kanagawa, Japan, was awarded the McLemore Prize for his book The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission - Civil Rights and States' Rights. The McLemore Prize goes to the best book on a subject related to Mississippi history published during the previous year and carries a $700 cash award. Martha Swain, a native of Starkville and professor of history at Mississippi State University, won the Dunbar Rowland Award for her lifelong contributions to the study of Mississippi history, including noted biographies of Pat Harrison and Ellen S. Woodward; great dedication as a professor of history, most recently at MSU; and active involvement in the Mississippi Historical Society.
The B.L.C. Wailes Award for national distinction in the field of history went to D. Clayton James for outstanding contributions to the study of military history, including the highly acclaimed three-volume biography The Years of MacArthur, and great dedication as a professor of history, most recently at the Virginia Military Institute.
Bonnie C. Feig, who teaches at Starkville High School, won the John K. Bettersworth Award ($100), presented annually to an outstanding high school or middle school history teacher. The Hattiesburg Area Historical Society received the Frank E. Everett, Jr., Award ($300) for its exemplary contribution to the preservation and interpretation of the history of Hattiesburg and its surroundings.
The City of Jackson was chosen to receive the James T. Dawson Award for its outstanding local government records program. Tom Ward, professor of history at Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri, won the Willie D. Halsell Prize ($200) for the best article published in the Journal of Mississippi History, for his article "Medical Missionaries of the Delta: Dr. Dorothy Ferebee and the Mississippi Health Project, 1935-41."
Todd A. Herring, Lincoln University, Pennsylvania, won the Franklin L. Riley Prize ($500) for the best doctoral dissertation on Mississippi history, for his work titled "Natchez, 1795-1830: Life and Death on the Slavery Frontier."
Newly elected officers of the Mississippi Historical Society are David Bowen of Jackson, president; Ken McCarty, University of Southern Mississippi (USM), vice president; Elbert R. Hilliard, director of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History (MDAH), secretary-treasurer.
New members of the Society's Board of Directors for 2002-2005 are Bradley Bond, USM; Carl Butler, School for Math and Science, Mississippi University for Women; Bill Hanna, director of Local Government Records Office, MDAH; Ted Ownby, University of Mississippi; Eloise Quackenboss, Greenwood; and Patricia Young, Oxford.
Passionate Observer: Eudora Welty
Opening April 6 at the Mississippi Museum of Art is Passionate Observer: Eudora Welty, Among Artists of the Thirties. In this new innovative exhibition, Eudora Welty's photographs of the 1930s Great Depression are presented together with paintings, drawings, prints and photographs by notable American artists of the era-offering comparisons between Welty's artistic motivation and other visual interpretations of the times.
She once said that her purpose in photography was ". . . not to point the finger in judgment but to part a curtain, that invisible shadow that falls between people, the veil of indifference to each other's presence, each other's wonder, each other's human plight."
More than just a chronicle, Welty's photographs, like her celebrated fiction, reveal the courage and dignity of American people during this pivotal era.
Artists Walter Anderson, Thomas Hart Benton, William Hollingsworth, Marie Hull, William Hopper, John McCrady, Grant Wood, and Karl Wolfe are included in the exhibition along with photographers Berenice Abbott, Margaret Bourke-White, Walker Evans, and Dorothea Lange.
The exhibition is organized by Patti Carr Black, former director of the Old Capitol Museum and author of Art in Mississippi: 1720-1980, volume one in the Heritage of Mississippi Series, and Rene Paul Barilleaux, MMA deputy director for programs. Special consultant was Suzanne Marrs, Welty scholar and professor at Millsaps College. For more information, call the Museum at (601) 960-1515.
The Old Capitol Shop has photographic prints from Eudora Welty's 5 Photographs: Home Places portfolio available for purchase singly or in sets. For more information, call the Old Capitol Shop at (601) 359-6921.
Choctaw Celebration April 27
On Saturday, April 27, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., the Old Capitol Museum will present a Choctaw Celebration in conjunction with its current exhibit, Mississippi Choctaws: Traditional Life in a Modern World. A variety of crafts, music, and dancing will be offered on the Capitol Green.
Cultural demonstrations by Choctaw Indians will include stickball and drum, blowgun, beadwork, applique, basketry, and corn-grinding.
All events are free. For more information, contact the Old Capitol Museum, (601) 359-6920.
Grant's Campaign Trail Discovery Tour
Grant's Campaign Trail Discovery Tour Follow Grant's Vicksburg Campaign Trail using a map marking thirty-two sites including historic homes, churches, and cemeteries as well as bayous, fields, and country roads on the Discovery Tour April 12-14, sponsored by the Friends of the Vicksburg Campaign and Historic Trail. Special events include lectures, musical performances, and museum visits. To order the map and events schedule, call the Friends office, (601) 636-5010.
Wilkinson County Bicentennial Celebration April 18-21
Randy Sparks, author of Religion in Mississippi (Heritage of Mississippi Series) will be the featured speaker Thursday, April 18, in Woodville, Mississippi, as part of the Wilkinson County Bicentennial Celebration. A parade, tour of historic homes and churches, reenactment, cocktail buffet at Indian Fields Plantation, art show and sale on the square, and music festival celebrating the work of Woodville's native sons William Grant Still, Lester Young, and Scott Dunbar will be offered during the April 18-21 celebration. For more information, call David Smith at the Wilkinson County Museum, (601) 888-4808.
Winterville Mounds: Travel Treasure
Winterville Mounds, Greenville, has been selected as an offical AAA Southern Travel Treasure. The January/February issue of AAA Southern Traveler magazine contained a feature on the MDAH site, which was selected for its appeal to typical AAA members.
Johnny Cox Honored by DAR
Johnny Cox, Grenada Middle School, was presented the 2002 Mississippi State Society, Daughters of the American Revolution "Outstanding Teacher of American History" Award at the recent DAR state conference. Cox has been actively involved for many years with the Mississippi Junior Historical Society, and his students have been frequent participants in the National History Day Competition.
Mississippi History Day at USM Saturday, April 13, 2001
Call or email Mary Beth Farrell at (601) 266-4335.
Donna Dye, Sam McGahey Retire
Sam McGahey, MDAH chief archaeologist since 1974, retired January 30 after more than three decades of service to the Department. He oversaw every aspect of the Department's archaeology program and had done much to unite the amateur and professional archaeological communities. He participated in many important excavations over the years, including the search for Fort Maurepas on the Gulf Coast, the recording of the Sturdivant Fish Weir in southwest Mississippi, and, recently, the excavation of the Loosa Yokena site in Warren County. His numerous publications include the 2000 Mississippi Projectile Point Guide, which was the result of some thirty years' research. McGahey, also a talented artist and member of the Mississippi Craftsmen's Guild, is well known for his Native-American-inspired woodcarvings.
Donna Dye, director of the Old Capitol Museum since 1992, retired March 31 after twenty-six years of dedicated service to the Department. She held a number of positions before she was named director, including historian and programs coordinator. While she was director, the Old Capitol's new permanent exhibit Mississippi 1500-1800 was opened and the Old Capitol was selected as one of the nation's first Smithsonian Affiliates. Since the death of Eudora Welty in July 2001, Dye has been instrumental in coordinating the work of the Department and the Eudora Welty Foundation in anticipation of the opening of the Eudora Welty House museum. She has been closely involved in the planning for the new state history museum that has been authorized for planning by the state legislature. Over the years Dye has been active in the Mississippi Historical Society, the Mississippi Heritage Trust, the Mississippi Museums Association, and countless civic organizations in Jackson. Donna has assured members of the Welty Foundation, however, that she will continue as secretary after her retirement. She also plans to serve as a volunteer coordinator for the new history museum project.
by the Mississippi Department of Archives
and History Elbert R. Hilliard, director Chrissy Wilson, editor