Kermit the Frog took up permanent residence on
a piece of driftwood beside an epoxy pond at the Leland, Mississippi Chamber
of Commerce thanks to Jane Nebel Henson, widow of Muppets' creator Jim
Henson. The tableau with the banjo-strumming Kermit sits in a showcase
near a three-sided montage of photographs from Henson's career.
First black Ole Miss graduate donates papers to library
Meredith and Ole Miss Vice Chancellor of Marketing Ed Meek.
Meredith, the first African American to enroll at the University of
Mississippi in Oxford in 1962, donated his personal papers to the J.D. Williams
Library at the university on March 21, 1997. The James H. Meredith papers
is a collection of more than 250 linear feet of clippings and printed material
from Meredith's personal appearances and book manuscripts dating back to 1962.
W. F. Minor was a journalist at the Emmett Till
murder trial in Tallahatchie County, Mississippi, in 1955, at which two white
men were found not guilty, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary,
for the murder of Till, a 14-year-old black boy visiting from Chicago who
was killed because he dared to whistle at a white woman. Writing for the New
Orleans Times-Picayne at the time, Minor reported the sham of a trial
objectively. Since then, Minor, who turned 75 on May 17, has continued to
write about Mississippi, and recently he became the first recipient of the
John Chancellor Award for Excellence in Journalism by the Annenberg Public
Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.
A minister in Jacksonville, Florida, has asked
a local school board to ban Richard
Wright's 1945 memoir, Black Boy, as inappropriate for high
school students. Wright's widow, Ellen Wright, has written a letter to a Florida
newspaper calling the attempted ban "an American tragedy."
'Lost' Tennessee Williams play to be staged in U.K.
10 June 1997
A "lost" play by U.S. dramatist Tennessee
Williams is to get its world premiere in London next year, the Royal
National Theater said Tuesday. The play Not About Nightingales was
written in the 1930s when Williams was at the start of a career that made
him one of the 20th century's most successful playwrights. It is set in a
men's prison and deals partly with homosexual relationships but does not appear
in any Williams' collections. It was discovered by British actress Vanessa
Redgrave during a search of Williams' papers. London's Royal National Theater
said Tuesday it would stage the play in the spring of 1998.
Larry Brown is first two-time winner of Southern Book Award for fiction
William Faulkner's 100th birthday celebrated in Oxford,
around the world
25 September 1997
The 100th birthday of William
Faulkner was celebrated in both the town of his birth, New Albany,
Mississippi, and his hometown, Oxford, on September 25. In New Albany, a three-day
festival celebrated its most famous son, while in Oxford, a controversial
bronze statue of Faulkner was unveiled in front of City Hall on the town square,
with fellow Mississippi writers Shelby
Foote and Willie
Morris present for its dedication.
University of Mississippi Professor William
R. Ferris was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate on November
9 as chairman of the National Endowment for
the Humanities. He leaves behind the directorship of the Center
for the Study of Southern Culture at the University of Mississippi. His
publications include a number of anthropological studies on southern and African-American
art, crafts, and music as well as the massive Encyclopedia of Southern
Culture which he helped edit. Nominated by President Bill Clinton to head
the agency, he was championed in the Senate by Majority Leader Trent Lott,
a fellow Mississippian.