Speakers Announced for Black History Month

February 9, 2022

A professor whose research assisted on recent documentary films about the deadly 1921 Tulsa race massacre, will speak at Marshall University later this month to celebrate Black History Month.

John W. Franklin, who will appear Feb. 18, at 4 p.m. in the Shawkey Dining room at the Memorial Student Center, has been a specialist in the history and traditions of communities of the African Diaspora for nearly 25 years.

He is recognized for his research on the 1921 attack against the Tulsa, OK, Greenwood District known as the wealthy “Black Wall Street.” Last spring Oklahoma State University-Tulsa presented Franklin with an honorary doctorate of humane letters.

“John W. Franklin has dedicated his life and career to the progression of truth and healing,” said Pamela Fry, president of OSU-Tulsa. “I find it especially important to honor Mr. Franklin, who has spent decades shining a light on a neglected dimension of the African American experience in the nineteenth and early twentieth century.”

Dr. Carter G. Woodson Lyceum also announced two more Black History Month speakers. Physicians Elsy Caldwell of Cincinnati and Leonard White, assistant dean of Marshall’s Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, will discuss black physicians during the Civil War. They will speak Feb. 25 at 4 p.m. in BE5 at the Memorial Student Center.

The Woodson Lyceum kicked off Black History Month last week with announcement of the winners of Marshall’s annual poster competition dedicated to Black history.

“You are creating art. One of the strong reasons for art is the effect it has on people, how they react to it and how it stirs them and make them think,” Dr. Teresa Eagle, dean of Marshall’s College of Education and Professional Development, said during the virtual program. “Maybe it inspires them to do something about something they will feel passionate about.”

The Black History Month annual poster competition originally only accepted entries from Marshall students. The competition then broadened its scope to accept entries from elementary, middle and high school students.

This was the sixth annual competition for Marshall University students and the fifth year for K-12 students. The posters were graded for their adherence with the theme, the overall design and the potential to impact on race relations.

“I’m excited to see the art and creativity and the magic that you see, that you have brought forth in this program today,” said President Brad Smith. “I am also excited about the theme, and the reason why I am excited about the theme of Black History Month because it reminds us what happened in the past but what’s possible in the future.”

This year there were 59 entries among all the different age categories. The theme for this year was Black Health and Wellness, fitting well with the ongoing pandemic. The first-place award received $200 while second and third received $100 or $50 accordingly.

The elementary competition had a tie for first place: Nevaeh Hayes, a fourth grader at Meadows Elementary School, and Ashton Schultz, a fifth grader at Southside Elementary School.

The middle school merit winner was Jillian Castle, a seventh grader from Barboursville Middle School. Harper Armentrout, an eighth-grade student also from Barboursville Middle School, won first place.

The high school merit recipient was Stevie Culbreth, a 10th grader from Huntington High School. The high school first place winner was Lyric Smith, a ninth grader also from Huntington High School.

The Marshall University student merit winners were Nicole Carey and Peyton Dolin. Jacob Wood won first place overall and his entry will become the official Black History Month poster for

Marshall.

This program is only the beginning of all the different events Marshall University will be having to celebrate Black History Month. More information on the upcoming events can be found at https://www.marshall.edu/blackhistorymonth.

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