Mississippi Valley State University

December 19, 2014

University News

MVSU HOSTS COTTON KINGDOM SYMPOSIUM AND AMERICAN ANCESTRAL CELEBRATION

October 08, 2012

ITTA BENA (October 8, 2012) – Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU) will host the “Inaugural Sweat Equity Investment in the Cotton Kingdom Symposium and American Ancestral Celebration”, October 11 and 12, 2012 on the campus of MVSU.  The two events are a collaboration between Khafre, Incorporated and MVSU. 

 

The “Sweat Equity Investment in the Cotton Kingdom Symposium” will have stimulating discussions and historical presentations on leading-edge research, innovative practices, and foundational values of the cotton industry and lifestyle.  

 

Some confirmed presenters include: Dr. Jo Baldwin, Associate Professor, Department of English, MVSU; Dr. Luther Brown, Director of the Delta Center for Culture and Learning; monument developer Ed Dwight; internationally acclaimed economist Dr. Julianne Malveaux; Dr. Micah Rueber, Assistant Professor of History, MVSU; retired Vice President University of Massachusetts system and Mississippi Blues Commissioner Dr. Edgar E. Smith; national spokesman Clifton Taulbert; and Mississippi Blues Foundation Board Member Dr. Joseph Martin Stevenson.

 

Khafre, Inc. is an organization whose mission is to build monuments and memorials, develop educational workshops, and programs that focus on topics that preserve the quality of life within the Mississippi Delta.  

 

"The partnership with “The Valley” validates the notion that a tribute and monument to sharecroppers and cotton pickers are not just timely, but is significant on many levels. Honoring the legacy of “grandmamma-nem” in an academic arena gives license to further scholarship and international acceptance,” said C.Sade Turnipseed, executive director, Khafre, Inc.

 

“Congratulations to Ms. Turnipseed and the board members of Khafre, Inc.  Their mission to honor the legacy of those who have made the Mississippi Delta an American treasure is commendable,” said University President Donna H. Oliver.  

 

 

Oliver also said, “The University wishes the organization future success, and looks forward to partnering to create innovative educational opportunities for students, faculty, staff, and the community. The University is always looking for ways to expose students, faculty, staff and the Delta community to academic and historical programs.

 

The two-day events are as follows:

 

·         Thursday, October 11, 9:00 a.m. in the MVSU Business Education Auditorium

will be the “Sweat Equity Investment in the Cotton Kingdom Symposium”

 

·         Friday, October 12, 12 noon the official groundbreaking ceremony of “The Cotton Pickers of America Monument and Sharecroppers Interpretive Center” will be held on the Brown-Shirley family historical property in Mound Bayou, (Bolivar County) Mississippi, just off Highway 61

 

·         Friday, October 12, 6:00 p.m. on MVSU campus (pond across from Harrison Complex) will be the “American Ancestral Ceremony: A Tribute to Cotton Pickers and Sharecroppers”

 

·         Friday, October 12, 7:00 p.m. in the Lackey Auditorium will be the “Cotton Pickers Ball”

 

The symposium and ground breaking are free to the public.  Tickets for the Cotton Pickers Ball are available at the MVSU cashier’s window for $25, da’ House of Khafre, Inc. 105 Main Street Indianola, and online at: www.ticketriver.com (search: cotton-pickers-ball). Student tickets will be available at the door for $5 with valid picture student ID.

Initially created by the state legislature in 1946 to train teachers for rural and elementary schools in the Mississippi Delta, Mississippi Valley State University is one of eight state supported institutions for higher education in the state of Mississippi’s consortium of Institutions for Higher Learning (IHL). 

Mississippi Valley State University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award bachelor's and master’s degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Mississippi Valley State University.

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The First Annual

SWEAT EQUITY INVESTMENT IN THE COTTON KINGDOM SYMPOSIUM

Mississippi Valley State University - Business Education Building

Thursday, October 11, 2012, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 

PROGRAM

8:30 am          

Registration opens                 

Monroe Golden’s “The Cotton Pickers” historical exhibit (on display in lobby)

9:00                            

Welcome                                

Dr. Donna H. Oliver, MVSU President

9:10                

Symposium Overview            

C. Sade Turnipseed, Khafre, Inc., Executive Director

9:15-9:45                    

SESSION I: COTTON, BLUES AND DELTA HERITAGE

Dr. Anna Hammond, Provost and Executive V.P. MVSU, Moderator

Mr. Willie Shepard, former Cotton Picker, veteran and entrepreneur                       

Dr. Edgar Smith, Director Mississippi Blues Commission’s Benevolent Fund

Dr. Luther Brown, Director of the Delta Center for Culture and Learning, and Manager of the Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area during the planning phase

9:45-10:15                              

DISCUSSION

10:15-10:25                

Break

10:25-10:30                

Traditional Spiritual, Jaribu Hill, Esq.

10:45-11:30                

SESSION II: UNCOMPENSATED LABOR AND COTTON AS CURRENCY RESEARCH PAPERS:

Dr. Kathryn Green, History Coordinator, Dept. Of Social Sciences, MVSU Moderator

Jaribu Hill, Esq., Mississippi Workers Center, “Badges and Incidents of Slavery—A Legacy of Uncompensated Labor and Exploitation”

Paul E. Spears, Sr. BSH, “The Effects of the Sharecroppers Farming System on the Education of African-American Youth in Northwest Sunflower County”

Dr. Micah Rueber, Asst. Professor of History, MVSU - “Folding Money: Cotton as Currency in 19th Century Mississippi”

11:30 - 11:50              

DISCUSSION                                   

Clifton Taulbert, “We Celebrate Their Survival!” (Read by Dr. Eulah L. Peterson)                       

12:00-1:00                  

LUNCH BREAK                              

Art Talk by Robert Ketchens                                     

“Sharecroppers Strike of 1939” 2010-11 Series (14 pieces)

1:00                            

Announcement of Awards    

Dr. Kathryn Green, MVSU History Professor, Dept. of Social Sciences

1:05                            

Introduction of Keynote                    

C. Sade Turnipseed, Ph.D. Candidate MTSU, Khafre, Inc.

KEYNOTE ADDRESS                    

Dr. Julianne Malveaux, Economist, former President Bennett College

“Sweat Equity Investment in the Cotton Kingdom” via Skype 

1:30-2:00                    

SESSION III: GLOBAL IMPACT OF COTTON—via Skype

RESEARCH PRESENTATIONS:

C. Sade Turnipseed, Ph.D. Candidate, MTSU, Executive Director, Khafre, Inc., Moderator

Dr. Alpha N’Thio Diarra, “The History of Cotton in Mali”

Mammadou Doucoure, Assistant PDG, Compagnie du Développement Malienne des Textiles, “The Contemporary Cotton Industry of Mali”

2:00                

DISCUSSION

2:15                            

Special Performance              

Dr. Alphonso Sanders, Chair, Fine Arts Dept. & Dr. Jo Baldwin, Assoc. Professor, Dept. of English MVSU - “Plain Notes on Emmett Till”                                               

2:45                            

SESSION IV: REALITY OF THE COTTON PICKIN’ LEGACY RESEARCH PRESENTATIONS:

C. Sade Turnipseed, Ph.D. Candidate, MTSU, Executive Director, Khafre, Inc., Moderator

Dr. Joseph Stevenson, Modernizing the Idiom “Cotton To” for Relationship Building in the Delta Economy: What We Must Do”

3:15                            

Helen Sims, Director, Delta Reenactment Society, “In the Spirit of Fannie Lou” PART I

3:30                             

CLOSING REMARKS                    

Dr. Anna Hammond, Provost and Executive V.P., MVSU

Hermon Johnson, Chair, Khafre, Inc. “The Cotton Pickers of America Monument and Sharecroppers Interpretive Center