MISSISSIPPI STATE, MISS. – February 4, 2016 – Mitchell Memorial Library’s current exhibit, “Honoring Civil Rights in Mississippi” highlights some of Mississippi’s Civil Rights leaders on both a state and local level throughout various times in Mississippi’s history. The exhibit features items from the Douglas Conner Papers, Robert and Sadye Weir Papers, Dr. Richard Holmes Papers, Dorothy Bishop Papers and vertical file ephemera from various organizations at Mississippi State University. The exhibit consists of photographs, newspaper clippings, awards, pamphlets and other ephemera documenting the work of these leaders and organizations around the state, Starkville and Mississippi State University.
Dr. Conner, the second African-American to set up a general practice in Starkville, was both a leading physician in Starkville and an active member of the Democratic Party. Dr. Conner was also instrumental in organizing the Oktibbeha County chapter of the N.A.A.C.P in 1969.
Richard Holmes became the first African-American to enroll at Mississippi State University in 1965, earning both a B.A. and an M.A. at MSU. In 1991, Dr. Holmes also became the first African-American to have a campus building named in his honor, Holmes Cultural Diversity Center. Dr. Holmes returned to MSU as a full time doctor at Longest Student Health Center in 2003. Dorothy Bishop was a legendary civil rights advocate in the Starkville community until her death in 2014. A lifetime member of the N.A.A.C.P., she served as the Oktibbeha County Chapter president for many years and won numerous awards, including the Fanny Lou Hamer award for her dedication to civil rights in her community and the state of Mississippi.
Robert Wier was the first African-American to own and operate a business in Downtown Starkville, The City Barbershop. His wife, Sadye, served the African-American community as a teacher and a home economist with the Mississippi Cooperative Extension Home Services. Together they were one of the Starkville Community’s leading Civil Rights families.
The exhibit is located on the 2nd floor atrium of Mitchell Memorial Library and will be available for viewing from February 1 through March 5, 2016. For information on this exhibit, please contact Jana Hill at 662-325-7723 firstname.lastname@example.org or Elizabeth Pickle at 662-325-7675 email@example.com.
For more information regarding the Connor, Holmes, Weir, or Bishop Papers and campus organizations, please contact MSU Libraries’ Special Collections at 662-325-7679 firstname.lastname@example.org
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