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Mississippi Moments Podcast

These are the stories of our people in their own words. From sharecroppers to governors, the veterans, artists, writers, musicians, leaders, followers, all those who call Mississippi home. Since 1971 we've collected their memories. The technology has changed, but our mission remains the same: to preserve those wonderful stories. Listen to Mississippi Moments Monday through Friday. at 12:30pm on MPB think radio.
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Now displaying: 2011
Dec 8, 2011

The Mary Queen of Vietnam Community Development Corp. was established in 2006 to assist area Vietnamese-Americans after Hurricane Katrina.  Known as the CDC, they were called on once again to assist the Gulf Coast Vietnamese fishing community after the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

Dec 6, 2011

Here is our gift to you, our loyal listeners: 30 minutes of our annual Roots Reunion Show recorded live Saturday, December 3rd at the historic Saenger Theater in downtown Hattiesburg. The show features traditional music from Mississippi and the surrounding area.  This month's show included bluegrass byour house band, The Patchwork String Band, the traditional music of Doug and Rhonda Webb, Irish folk singer Jim Flanagan, Jazz by Heather and the Monkey King, and more bluegrass by Delta Reign.  You can get a CD of the entire show FREE with your paid membership to the Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage by going to http://www.usm.edu/oral-history/become-member .

Dec 1, 2011

Historic Mobile Street in downtown Hattiesburg was for many years the hottest strip for live music outside of Bourbon Street in New Orleans.  It was on Mobile Street in 1947 a young guitarist named Tommie Pruitt began a career that has lasted 64 years and counting.

Pruitt recalls learning to play on a homemade guitar and how his father earned money as a street musician.

Taken from an interview provided by the Mississippi Arts Commission's Folklife Archive.

Nov 16, 2011

In the early sixties, NASA decided to construct a rocket engine test facility in Hancock County 

Lee Paul of Bay St. Louis was part of a team of engineers sent to test how the noise would affect the surrounding area. He recalls the massive horn they used and the community’s reaction to the tests. Paul also recounts how area wildlife inspired the names of some of the roads.

Nov 16, 2011

As a boy in Nesbit, Kenny Brown had a hard time learning to play the guitar.  That changed when blues legend, Mississippi Joe Callicott, moved next door.

Years later, Brown befriended another blues legend, R.L. Burnside. Brown recalls playing with Burnside and his first trip to a juke joint.

Brown also demonstrates the difference between the Hill Country blues of North Mississippi and the Delta blues. This interview courtesy of the Mississippi Arts Commission's Folklife Archive.

Oct 28, 2011

In 1894, a group of African American men from the Bay St Louis area formed the One Hundred Members Benevolent Debating Association. In 1922, the Association constructed a meeting hall as place to conduct fundraising events.  Known as the Hundred Men Hall, it became a regular stop for many of the greatest musical acts of the day.

Oct 28, 2011

Walter Biggins and Anna Kline are newly weds from Jackson brought together by a love of Mississippi foods and culture. They detail how an article Kline was writing on ways to prepare watermelon became an annual party. The couple also belong to a "Soup Club", a group of friends that meet regularly to share good food and conversation.

Sep 30, 2011

As a boy, Hattiesburg resident, Jimmy Swan dreamed of performing on the Grand Ole Opry. He tells the story of how he ran away from home at the age of 13 and a young man he met named Hank Williams.

Sep 21, 2011

Randy Yates of Oxford is co-owner of the Ajax Diner on the Square.  He recalls growing up in Jackson and the restaurants that influenced his decision to go into food service.  He also details the foods offered at the Ajax Diner and why he feels it's important to have a wide variety.

Sep 9, 2011

Elsie McWilliams of Meridian loved to write plays for her church's you group, but had never tried to write a song. That changed after she received a phone call from her famous brother-in-law, country singer, Jimmie Rodgers

Sep 9, 2011

When Monica Williams flad her home city of New Orleans, after Hurricane Katrina, she decided to make Jackson her new home. Soon, Williams became the cafeteria chef for Saint Therese Catholic School. She discusses adapting her traditional New Orleans dishes to meet the nutritional needs of the children.

Aug 26, 2011

After not playing guitar for many years, John Arnold was inspired to by the re-release of Jimmie Rodgers' catalog in the mid-sixties. He began performing Rodgers' music across the state for fairs and other events.

Aug 26, 2011

For Greek Americans, traditional foods provide an important link to culture and family. Kris Gianakos recalls a recent family reunion and the role that food played at the gathering. He also details how Greek foods are combined with traditional American foods during the holidays.

Aug 17, 2011

As the son of an army officer, Julian Brunt of Biloxi, was exposed to different cultures and foods at a young age. He recalls a dinner party his mother gave for some German friends while in Europe.He also remembers his first Barq’s root beer and soft shell crab poor boy. When writing about food for the Sun Herald or other publications, Brunt likes to include stories that tie a particular dish to its parent culture.

Aug 11, 2011

Retired Lt. General Russell Honoré lead the recovery operation in his home state of Louisiana and Mississippi following Hurricane Katrina. He discusses his decision to make Camp Shelby his base of operations. Honoré points with pride to the recovery that’s been made in the years following the storm. He has decided to go on a personal crusade to help establish a culture of preparedness in the U.S.

Jul 22, 2011

Born in 1900, LeGrand “Doc” Capers witnessed many changes to his home town of Vicksburg. These included changes in technology, commerce and transportation. Capers recalls the first phonograph and the fire station next door.

Capers also describes a visit to the Vicksburg Cotton Exchange.

Jul 22, 2011

Sarah Carter of Greenville, was 10 years old during the great flood of 1927. She remembers watching the waters rise as people searched for a place to keep their livestock.

Carter recalls the decision to remain at home during the flood as boats became the only means of transportation.

Jul 22, 2011

Following WWII, advances in modern farming methods meant fewer jobs for rural Mississippians.  In response, the Tupelo Community Development Foundation was formed to bring industrial jobs to Lee County. Harry Martin of Tupelo explains. Martin also details how the Community Development Foundation unified the efforts and resources of the cities with those of the rural communities.

Jul 22, 2011

Before the advent of the self-service filling station in the 1970s, there was the full-service gas station.  Here, uniformed attendants pumped gas, checked your car’s fluids, and even washed the windshield.  

James and Ruby Wentworth of Meadville operated such a station during the 1940s. She recalls the demands of being a working wife and mother.

Jul 22, 2011

In 1955, director Elia Kazan came to Beniot, Mississippi to film the Tennessee Williams movie, Babydoll.  Kazan hired several locals to play small parts in the film. Brodie Crump, of Greenville, describes the character he played and his mother’s reaction to his new job.  Crump also recalls some of the actors he met while filming and upsetting a member of the crew.

Jun 27, 2011

During WWII, Japanese-Americans were forced to live in “relocation” camps by the government.  Despite this harsh treatment, many of them served with distinction in the armed forces. Herbert Sasaki recalls coming to Camp Shelby to join an all Japanese-American combat unit. Sasaki explains the purpose of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team and reflects on the heavy cost the 442nd paid in becoming on of the Army’s most decorated combat units.

Jun 6, 2011

In December of 1941, with war in the Pacific looming, a series of Naval Construction Battalions were established. Known as Seabees, they were responsible for building the bridges, airstrips, roads and buildings needed by our troops.  Dr. Patrick Gill of Macon, Mississippi explains how he became a Seabee. He remembers the hot and difficult conditions of the Philippines.

May 23, 2011

Like many blues musicians, Willie Jordan of Rose Hill, was taught how to play by family members. Jordan discusses the impact music has had on his life and the universal truths contained within the blues.

May 10, 2011

Blues Musician, Melvin Stacks of Picayune, recalls growing up poor and talks about his early influences. He also discusses his vocal techniques and the importance of warming up.

May 3, 2011

Broadcasting pioneer, Jobie Martin, was discouraged from playing sports as a child by his mother. He recounts the remarkable story of how he began playing football for Jackson State University (then Jackson College) at the age of 40--a feat that earned him a place in the JSU Sports Hall of Fame!

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