By Jackie Hampton,
Members of Beta Gamma Boule and the National Grand Boule of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity presented a joint donation to the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum September 12 at the museum located at 222 North Street in Jackson.
The organization’s name, ‘Boule,’ means ‘a council of noblemen.’ Members of the organization filled the room while social distancing and wearing masks, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They had an opportunity to tour the museum, with Pamela Junior, executive director of the Two Mississippi Museums, guiding the tour.
The organization presented a very generous check for $55,150 as a donation from funds they raised, in order to support the museum’s mission of shedding light on Black History and to inspire children.
Four members of Beta Gamma Boule are featured in the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum: Gilbert Mason, physician and leader of the wade-in campaign to desegregate the beaches of the Mississippi Gulf Coast; John Peoples, the sixth president of Jackson State University; Robert Smith, physician and civil rights activist and Jack Young, a civil rights attorney.
Pam Junior, director of Two Museums stated, “What a proud moment it is to accept this amazing gift.” She said, “In this storehouse lies the stories of brave men, women and children who faced adversarial bigotry, inhumane treatment, Jim Crow laws, lynching and a host of other tragedies, but they stood firm.” She said, these complex stories have helped us to understand what greatness, integrity and strength look like.”
Junior accepted the donation on behalf of Katie Blunt, executive director of the MS Dept. of Archives & History, Robert Benson, deputy director, MS Dept. of Archives & History, Reuben Anderson, chair of the Board of Trustees, MS Dept. of Archives & History, Cindy Gardner, Museum Division director and the citizens of Mississippi.