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Stories

Roy Windham | Mapping a Modern MS

Roy Windham brings community and classically American food to Hattiesburg through The Porter, a pub that he opened after returning from Nashville. Windham’s vision centers on bringing people together and highlighting the talents of Mississippians. Whether showcasing local musicians or locally brewed beers, The Porter embodies and highlights Modern Mississippi.

“It’s taking what people have done for thousands and thousands of years, gathering together socially with people of likeminded—or even different mindedness—gathering together over food or over drink or over drink or song or art or whatever it is. They gather together, and they live life together. And I think that’s so important, and we lose that a lot, especially in our culture with the digital and everything else, we lose that togetherness, that moment that is art. I mean really, life is art, and this idea that is everything is unique; every moment is unique.”-Roy

This interview is part of the Museum’s Mapping a Modern Mississippi Initiative.

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Posted on Wednesday, August 17, 2016 by ModernMS

Phillip Rollins aka DJ Young Venom | Mapping a Modern MS

Phillip Rollins describes Offbeat as an alternative arts store, but it has been described as a culture store. A venue, shop, and gallery for minority artists, Offbeat has become a hub of artistic activity in the Jackson area.

“It’s exactly what I wanted it to be. It’s still the beginning that it hasn’t gotten to where there are ten people coming in a day just hanging out, but it’s people that are building a community and realizing ‘I can have this here.’”-Phillip Rollins

This interview is part of the Museum’s Mapping a Modern Mississippi Initiative.

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Posted on Wednesday, August 17, 2016 by ModernMS

Carey Varnado | Mapping a Modern MS

Carey Varnado is a Hattiesburg-based lawyer who has spent the past thirty-six years helping citizens of Mississippi, and in the last five years, he has become increasingly involved in advocating for the LGBT community.

“I feel that it’s really an obligation of mine to spend part of my time helping people who, for whatever reason, don’t really have an advocate. It’s part why I became a lawyer. Sure, I do a lot of my work simply because it’s routine type legal work, and it’s just like what any other lawyer does. But I have always helped both individuals and groups that I feel needed help for whatever reason, and it’s been a real pleasure doing some things for the LGBT community.”-Carey

This interview is part of the Museum’s Mapping a Modern Mississippi Initiative.

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Posted on Monday, August 15, 2016 by ModernMS

David Banner | Mapping a Modern MS

David Banner is a well-known rapper, record producer, and activist. In 2006, Banner was awarded a Visionary Award by the National Black Caucus of the State Legislature in recognition of his work during and after Hurricane Katrina.

“To be a visionary and to push forth, that means you have to be a trailblazer, you have to go before and let the followers follow. You don’t have nothing to blaze that trail before, but the thing is if you persevere, then you’re history.”

This interview is part of the Museum’s Mapping a Modern Mississippi Initiative.

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Posted on Monday, August 15, 2016 by ModernMS

Tammy Santos Brewer | Mapping a Modern MS

After spending the majority of her life in Brookhaven, Tammy Santos Brewer found a passion for the history of the area. One of the charter members of the Lincoln County Historical and Genealogical society, Santos Brewer helped establish a museum, and along with other historians, wrote a book to preserve the rich story of Brookhaven.

“Brookhaven has had a lot of forward thinkers, I believe… You know there’s a cliché—you don’t know where you’re going unless you know where you’ve been—I think that applies a lot of the time, especially to the people that are the forward thinkers or those who see the big picture. They’ve seen where Brookhaven has been; they know where they want Brookhaven to go. I think by putting all that together they see the potential that Brookhaven has.”- Tammy

This interview is part of the Museum’s Mapping a Modern Mississippi Initiative.

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Posted on Monday, August 15, 2016 by ModernMS

Silver Lining Software | Mapping a Modern MS

Ed Songy programs whatever the city of Natchez needs for no cost. At the age of 88, he continues to give back to his city to further Natchez’s progress. Along with Kelin Hendricks, Ed wrote software that brought together disparate groups to work towards a common goal.

“It’s evolved to a system where a willingness to say ‘we want to give back to our community’ has turned into something—it’s not only good software, but it’s right on the edge of technology. Look at the rewards of being creative.”-Ed

This interview is part of the Museum’s Mapping a Modern Mississippi Initiative.

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Posted on Monday, August 8, 2016 by ModernMS

John Lynch & Kim Sessums | Mapping a Modern MS

John Lynch feels an inexplicable desire to repurpose spaces in Downtown Brookhaven. He calls it a “disease” or a “passion.” From this desire, the Inn on Whitworth, a Bed and Breakfast in Brookhaven, was born. Kim Sessums, a doctor/artist, was commissioned to decorate the space, and together, they have created a space where people like to be. For the past five years, people from around the world have enjoyed the Inn on Whitworth!

“Once we got the place done and people began to come in and visit, what we found out was—and I tell Johnny this all the time—if you make the space good, people may not know why they like to be in it, but they like to be in it. And that’s what happens here. People come in, probably different from anything they had known before… And they liked the art.”-Kim

“We get international travelers doing the Blue’s Trail, they’re going to New Orleans for various reasons. And so they come in and go ‘I cannot believe that this is in Brookhaven. This is just so different.’”-John

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Posted on Wednesday, August 3, 2016 by ModernMS

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