The History of Racial Justice Issues at Washington Street UMC
A four-part series written by WSUMC Historian, Mike Broome
This four-part series was published in four issues of Washington Street’s The Connection newsletter. Each article represented an event in the history of WSUMC and how we have stood up for racial injustices for many years. You can read the entire series by clicking on the article title below.
Upcoming Events and News of Interest
League of Women Voters Hosts Voting Registration Webinar
Election season is coming, and the League of Women Voters will be ready!
The League of Women Voters of the Columbia Area will be hosting a Voter Registration Training Webinar for people wanting to volunteer to help others register to vote. Participants will review ways to register to vote and review the VOTE411 tool providing voter and candidate information.
We will also hear from Mr. Cale Carter II, Voter Outreach Coordinator with Richland County Elections and Voter Registration Office, who will advise on state regulations impacting voter registration.
This event is open to all South Carolina League members —and nonmembers too! Let’s be ready to get out the vote.
REGISTER for August 23
About the Racial Justice Action Team
This new committee was formed to address and respond to racial injustice after the death of George Floyd. The Racial Justice Action Team met for the first time on June 29, 2020. Members of this team include Patricia Parrish, Alston Lippert, Nancy Whittle, Cindy Cox, Melanie Dobson, Neal Foster, Courtney Foster, Ann Jessup, Karen Lowrimore, Anne Sinclair, and Lee Smith. Nancy Whittle and Pastor Parrish are facilitating the team.
VISION: To actively advocate for racial justice within our congregation and community.
MISSION: Our mission is to inspire and engage our congregation and community to challenge and transform unjust systems of institutional and personal power. To accomplish this mission, we will:
- Educate ourselves and others around both historic and lived issues of systematic injustice. (Karen Lowrimore, email@example.com; Cindy Cox, firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Confront our own biases and the biases of others within WSUMC and the community at large. (Ann Jessup, email@example.com; Courtney Foster, firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Identify and remove barriers that prevent justice in social systems (education, housing, voting, law enforcement, etc.) Anne Sinclair, email@example.com; Cindy Cox, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Lead efforts to engage our congregation in the sustained work of racial justice (Nancy Whittle, email@example.com; Patricia Parrish, firstname.lastname@example.org)
- The names in parentheses are the team members who will take the lead on these individual efforts by working on actions to achieve each goal. We want to engage the congregation in this effort and we ask for you to join in this journey. If you have a specific interest in the above, please contact the lead team members. We welcome and encourage your participation. We also plan to work with other existing church teams on each action.
For many years BellSouth/AT&T produced an African American History calendar. In the last few years, the SC DOE has taken over this project. It was created to be a resource for teachers to use in the classroom. The calendar generally features individuals. However, for the 25th anniversary, they have highlighted key historical events. The link below will take you to the full website with current calendar and archives of all years. https://scafricanamerican.com/
Resources on Columbia’s African American and Civil Rights History
Clergy for Racial Equality (CFRE) is a Columbia District network of support and empowerment for clergy to share ideas and “best practices” of addressing racism in each pastor’s community and church context. CFRE invites you to explore a virtual tour created by Columbia SC 63. This tour covers important African American and Civil Rights Movement historical landmarks.
Whether you explore this tour online or by foot, you can refer to the resources below for further information about this important but often forgotten history of Columbia, SC.
Begin your tour by visiting http://www.columbiasc63.com/tour. If a landmark piques your interest, check below for further learning.
- Columbia in the 1960s: The State House and Public Protest
“March 2, 1961 at the State House,” Richland County Library blog
- Sarah Mae Flemming and the Integration of Public Transportation
Sarah Mae Flemming bio by Columbia City of Women
Video about Sarah Mae Flemming by BWCAR 2016
- Legacies of the Civil Rights Movement in South Carolina
Briggs v Elliott video by The 74
Briggs v. Elliott article by The 74
- We Shall Not Be Moved: South Carolina Student Activism and the Supreme Court
History of the NAACP
Friendship 9 video by SCETV
The Orangeburg Massacre video by SCETV
- Bouie v City of Columbia Historic Marker
“Eckerd’s” by 2020 Jubilee (video)
- Old Greyhound Bus Station
“Traveling in Columbia during the Jim Crow era,” Richland County Library blog
- The Walls Came Tumbling Down: Integration & Racial Dialogue
Interview with Henri Baskins about CCRC
History of CCRC
Bio of I. Dequincey Newman
- Modjeska Simkins House
Bio of Modjeska Monteith-Simkins by National Parks Service
“Rise Up” video
- Township Auditorium
“Township Auditorium” by 2020 Jubilee (video)
“Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Columbia,” Richland County Library blog
- Washington Street. Black Business District
Black Business District, Historic Columbia
“Main Street at Mid-Century,” Richland County Library blog
- Victory Savings Bank/NAACP Office
Cocktail With A Curator – Toy Reveals History of First Black Owned Bank in South Carolina (video)
- A Living Sanctuary: Zion Baptist Church & Columbia’s Civil Rights Struggle
“Zion Baptist Church” by 2020 Jubilee (video)
Resources from Richland County Library (RCL)
MINORITY OWNED BUSINESSES PARTICIPATING
IN SODA CITY IN DOWNTOWN COLUMBIA
• Order Books from Independent Black-owned book stores: (click here)
• Here is a great list of books on racial justice compiled by Courtney Foster