[Mississippi History Newsletter Online.]

A MDAH Publication  |  Volume 47 No. 1  |  January 2005

H. T. Holmes: Sixth Director of MDAH

H. T. Holmes begins his term as the sixth director of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History on January 1, 2005. Holmes succeeds Elbert R. Hilliard, who served thirty-one years in the position.

Holmes, director of the department's Archives and Library division since 1988, began his association with MDAH in 1969 as a college intern. He went on to serve as oral historian, archivist, records analyst, manuscript curator, map curator, and head of the special collections section. A native of Winona, Holmes earned his B.A. in English from Millsaps College in 1973 and a master's degree in library science from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1982.

"I cannot think of a more appropriate choice for director than Hank Holmes," said William F. Winter, MDAH board president. "I know that under Hank the department will continue to meet the high standards set by Elbert Hilliard."

Holmes, shown above at Winter Building construction site, was active in the planning of the new archives building.

Julia Young To Succeed H. T. Holmes

The former head of Special Collections and Archives at Georgia State University has been named the new director of the Archives and Library division of MDAH. Julia Marks Young, who succeeds H. T. Holmes, assumes her duties January 1.

Young earned a B.A. in history from Emory University in 1972, an M.A. in history from Auburn University in 1978, and a master's degree in library science from the University of Michigan in 1981. Young was employed by the University of Southern Mississippi from 1983 to 1990, first in the School of Library Service, and later as senior manuscripts processor at the McCain Library and Archives.

"During her years in Mississippi, Julia contributed greatly to the development of archival administration at MDAH and other state archives," said Holmes. "She returns with a wealth of new experience that will be of great benefit to the department."

Young has worked as assistant archivist at the University of Michigan; head of special collections for the Superconducting Super Collider Laboratory, Dallas; head of Special Collections and Archives, Pullen Library, Georgia State University; and director of development and external affairs, University Libraries and Information Technology Division, Emory University. Young is also the former editor of American Archivist, the journal of the Society of American Archivists.

MHS Annual Meeting: Transforming Medicine in Twentieth-Century Mississippi

James Hardy, M.D., performs pioneering transplant surgery at University Medical Center, Jackson. Photograph courtesy UMC.

Alan M. Kraut, American University, Washington, D. C., will be the keynote speaker at the annual meeting of the Mississippi Historical Society March 3-5 in Jackson. In commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, the meeting has as its theme "Transforming Medicine in Twentieth-Century Mississippi."

The meeting is open to the public. The Old Capitol Inn in downtown Jackson will serve as the headquarters and location for the lectures and workshops. A reception at the Governor's Mansion on Thursday, March 3, will welcome participants. Society president Donna Dye, Ridgeland, and program chair Charles Reagan Wilson, University of Mississippi, have scheduled prominent scholars including Kraut; Daniel W. Jones, dean, School of Medicine, University of Mississippi; Alton B. Cobb, M.D., former director, Mississippi Department of Public Health; William Turner, M.D., professor and chair, Department of Surgery, University Medical Center; Harrell Weathersby, Southeastern Louisiana University, Hammond; Kaye Bender, dean, School of Nursing, University of Mississippi; and Thomas Ward, Jr., Rockhurst University, Kansas City, Missouri.

The annual Federation of Mississippi Historical Societies workshop this year, "Prescriptions for a Healthy Historical Society," will be directed by MDAH staff members Cheryl Branyan,Todd Sanders, and Anne Webster. Charles Reagan Wilson, Ted Ownby, and Andrea Odom, all of the University of Mississippi, will report on the progress of the "Mississippi Encyclopedia."

A luncheon, banquet, and awards luncheon are planned, as well as a reception honoring outgoing MHS president Dye. A tour of the Mississippi State Hospital Museum is scheduled, and prestigious MHS prizes, including the McLemore Prize for best book of 2004, the Bettersworth Award for best history teacher of 2004, and more, will be presented.

Registration for MHS members is $15 individuals, $20 couples; for nonmembers $40 individuals, $55 couples (includes membership). Registration for the Federation of Mississippi Historical Societies Workshop is $10 members, $25 nonmembers. A block of rooms is being held at the Old Capitol Inn until February 3. To reserve a room, call 888/359-9001 or 601/ 359-9000; specify the MHS rate of $105 plus tax. Additional rooms have been booked at the Marriott (601-969-5100, ext. 315); specify the MHS rate of $85 plus tax. For a registration form or more information, call Betty Kearney, 601/ 576-6849.


Windows Workshop

Windows of historic buildings are significant, character-defining features, yet too often historic windows are lost during building rehabilitation due to a lack of understanding regarding their repair and maintenance as well as concerns about energy efficiency.

On Friday, January 14, at the Old Central High School in downtown Jackson, MDAH, through a grant from the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training, will offer a one-day workshop on maintaining and restoring historic windows.

For more information, contact Michelle Jones at 662/325-2520 or gmwj@ra.msstate.edu.

Reception To Honor Hilliard

The Board of Trustees and staff of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History cordially invite the public to attend a reception honoring Elbert R. Hilliard on the occasion of his retirement. The reception will be held at the Old Capitol, Jackson, at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 27, 2005, and is sponsored by the Mississippi Historical Society, the Mississippi Genealogical Society, and Communication Arts Company, Inc., of Jackson.

Mark February Calendars: NLLC

The 16th annual Natchez Literary and Cinema Celebration will be held February 23-27. The theme, Between Two Worlds: Free Blacks in the Antebellum South, marks the occasion of the National Park Service's opening of the restored home of free black Natchezan William Johnson. A special reception will honor former MDAH director Elbert R. Hilliard and new director H. T. Holmes at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 23. To order a brochure, call 601/ 446-1289 or to see the entire program online, visit their web site.

Larry Brown, 1951-2004

Larry Brown, a firefighter and largely self-taught writer, died November 24 at his home in the Tula community near Oxford at the age of 53.

Born in Oxford in 1951, Brown briefly attended the University of Mississippi. Years later he returned to attend classes taught by writers Ellen Douglas and Barry Hannah. Brown's first book was a collection of stories called Facing the Music, published in 1988, followed in 1989 by his first novel, Dirty Work, inspired in part by his father's experiences in World War II.

Brown's other works included a collection of stories, Big Bad Love (1990), Joe (1991), Father and Son (1996), Fay (2001), and The Rabbit Factory: A Novel (2003). He also wrote several nonfiction works, including On Fire (1993) about his work as a firefighter and Billy Ray's Farm (2001), a collection of essays about his life and work as a writer. Brown was the recipient of the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Award for Literature, the Southern Critics Circle Award for Fiction, the Thomas Wolfe Award, and the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Award. A documentary, "The Rough South of Larry Brown," premiered at the Center for Documentary Studies, Duke University, in 2000.


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Published by the Mississippi Department of Archives and History • H. T. Holmes, director • Chrissy Wilson, editor
Please send correspondence to: MHN, P.O. Box 571, Jackson, MS 39205 or email to pubinfo@mdah.state.ms.us