The East MobileBooth made its way to the Panhandle and is now parked in downtown Pensacola, Florida. Spain, France, Great Britain, the Confederacy, and the United States have all claimed the city at one time or another during its 450-year history, which is why Pensacola is now known as the “The City of Five Flags.”
Opening day was hosted by both First United Methodist Church and our friends at WUWFÂ 88.1 FM and featured guest speakers Nancy Fetterman, a community activist and coordinator of the Public History program at the University of West Florida (UWF), and UWF Associate Professor of History, Dr. Patrick Moore. Both speakers shared their thoughts on the value of telling stories and the impact the practice has made on their lives and on the communities in which they have worked.
In one of the first interviews of the day, Lusharon Wiley talked with her friend, Reverend H.K. Matthews, about his life-long activism. Rev. Matthews began his contribution to Pensacola’s Civil Rights Movement in the early 1960s as president of the Pensacola Council of Ministers. After staging protests for civil rights, Rev. Matthews was jailed as a political prisoner. Decades after those protests, in February of 2006, his struggles were acknowledged when a park was dedicated in his name to recognize the social changes that he helped to bring to Pensacola.
For the second story of the day, Charles Morgan III interviewed his mother, Camille W. Morgan, about the stand that she and her husband, Charles “Chuck” Morgan Jr., made in the South during the 1960s. Chuck, who passed away in January 2009, was a leading civil rights lawyer who won a landmark lawsuit that helped establish the so-called ‘one-person-one-vote’ rule, giving African Americans more equitable representation in legislative districts. Camille talked about how she and Chuck were threatened with violence by other white people in the South and how he never let those threats deter him from speaking out against discrimination and against the institutions that were complicit in the racist oppression of the time.