Registration still open for FREE webinar!

  • 1.  Registration still open for FREE webinar!

    Posted 2 days ago

    Greetings, all!

    The Society of Mississippi Archivists is excited to announce its upcoming Virtual Table Talk, "'The Burial Ground is Common Ground': Researching and Presenting The Eighth of May Emancipation Celebration in Columbus, MS." This talk will be given by Chuck Yarborough, History Teacher for the Mississippi School for Math and Science, and Mona Vance-Ali, Archivist for the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library System. 

    In 2005, history teacher Chuck Yarborough launched the annual Eighth of May Emancipation Celebration, a project that asks high school students to utilize primary and secondary document research to develop public performances recounting the history and contributions of the African American community in Columbus, MS, during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. With help from archivist Mona Vance-Ali, students use resources found at the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library's Billups-Garth Archive to pinpoint local historical figures and expand upon the narrative of the local African American experience. The project's culmination is a public performance given in Sandfield Cemetery, Columbus's oldest African American cemetery, on May 8th -- the date in 1865 when Union troops arrived from Alabama and effectively freed the enslaved majority in Columbus and Lowndes County. Since its inception, the project has garnered local and national attention. It has been featured in The Chautauquan Daily, The Atlantic, and US News & World Report. It will also be featured in Our Towns, an upcoming documentary on HBO (spring 2021). In this talk, Yarborough and Vance-Ali will discuss the execution of the project, how their two organizations successfully collaborate on the program, and the project's impact on both the students and the community.

    Friday, February 26, 2021
    12:00 PM CT

    Visit to register for this event.

    For more information, contact Carrie P. Mastley at
    Twitter & Facebook: @SocMissArch

    Carrie Mastley
    Assistant Professor/Manuscripts Librarian
    Mississippi State University Libraries
    Mississippi State MS