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by tcwhitington
Last updated 7 years ago

Social Studies
World Culture

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Jefferson Historical Society& Museum

Multi-Culturalism Immersion ProjectTami WhitingtonLamar University

Francis Black

Charlie Young

New Zion Baptist Church

Union MissionaryBaptist Church

One of the historic African-American locations that I learned about at the museum was the Union MissionaryBaptist Church, which was founded just after the Civil War. It became a place of African-American pride because in the post-war period of Jefferson, the members were willing to die to defend it. To listen to a part of the letter written from Marion County Chief Justice Donald Campbell to Governor E.M. Pease in 1868, click on the play-link below the letter. The Union Missionary Baptist Church is no longer an operating church, but is now a historic site, marked by the Texas Historical Commission.

For my Immersion Dialoge, I chose Ms. Melanie Howard. She is a teacher in the Jefferson ISD, a member of a local African-American church, and a mother of two children. I felt that these factors would together make for an interesting and insightful dialogue.

My principal and I attended a meeting at the New Zion Baptist Church, a rural African-American congregation served by the Jefferson ISD. We each spoke as part of the program and took questions. It was an enlightening experience - some of the congretation members were the parents of students that I had worked with, others had children who were currently in the high school, while others' kids would be coming into JHS in the coming years. I was not only able to answer their questions and concerns, but it was a learning experience for me as I heard first-hand the issues that concerned them.

The Jefferson Museum contains displays of the city's history dating back before the Civil War. I visited the museum to explore and study their displays of African-American history in Jefferson and Marion County. I found two profound individuals from the artifacts, and from the Texas Slave Narratives in the archive room, that of Francis Black, and of Charlie Young. Both had been born into slavery, and their live went from there into two completely different directions. Excerpts from their lives are featured in audio below their photos.


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