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Mississippi - Indianola: David Mathews Interviewee
Dent, Thomas C.
Tom Dent interviews David Mathews in Indianola, Mississippi. Mathews states that his family was originally from Hinds County and his parents moved to Indianola. Mathews served in the army during WWII and returned to Indianola afterwards. Mathews attended Morehouse College in Atlanta. He came back to Indianola after graduation because he felt he was needed. Once there, he taught in the public elementary school for 8 years and the high school for 25 years. He was also a Baptist pastor at the same time at Belgrove Church. Since retirement he has been focusing on his work with the church. Mathews talks a little about how it felt to live in a segregated community. School Principal was the highest official position a Black man could aspire to. They discuss a School Supervisor positon that was open to some Blacks and women. Mathews states that the voting rights act created a lot of change. Mathews says that one of the buildings belonging to the church was burned down in 1964 because it was used for Head Start programing and to hold meetings on Race related issues. Mathews talks about the process of de-segregation and Black election campaigns. They discuss Black women who were active in Civil Rights and the movements they spearheaded. Mathews discusses Greenville and Indianola, stating Greenville is a behind in terms of de-segregation. They discuss a new middle school being built in Indianola. Mathews expresses some surprise that the White community was so supportive of the school because a majority of White students attended a private academy. They discuss Greenville, which Mathews states is not doing well economically. They discuss a catfish farm in Greenville that went on strike. He says the main exports of the region are rice, beans, catfish and cotton.
David Mathew's family can be heard in the background, particularly a young child
World War II
Hinds County (Ms.)
Tulane University Digital Library
Box 153, Item 6, Tom Dent collection, Amistad Research Center at Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana
Physical rights are retained by the Amistad Research Center. Copyright is retained in accordance with U.S. copyright laws.