Mount Vernon - On December 1, 1955, after a long day's work at a Montgomery department store, where she worked as a seamstress, Rosa Parks boarded the Cleveland Avenue bus for home. She took a seat in the first of several rows designated for "colored" passengers. Though the city's bus ordinance did give drivers the authority to assign seats, it didn't specifically give them the authority to demand a passenger to give up a seat to anyone (regardless of color). However, Montgomery bus drivers had adopted the custom of requiring black passengers to give up their seats to white passengers, when no other seats were available. If the black passenger protested, the bus driver had the authority to refuse service and could call the police to have them removed.
On Thursday September 15, the Chautauqua Series presents Dr. Annette Jefferson portrayal of a black woman who witnessed Rosa Parks small act of defiance that sparked the Civil Rights Movement. Dr. Jefferson has been a regular guest at the series and an Ohio Humanities scholar, who has brought Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, Mahalia Jackson and Coretta Scott King among others to the Knox County stage.
The series strives to bring the lives of people in all walks of life, Founding Fathers and Mothers, early Ohio, Civil War, Old West, World World II, Entertainers and other aspects of life to give our community the opportunity to learn more about the real people and the struggles and triumphs they faced and extend our knowledge of our neighbors and ancestors. The series is organized by Chris Petee, Gerry Rensel and Mike Petee and supported in part by a grant from the Ariel Foundation and the donations of the audience at each program. All donations at are given to the scholars and opening musical acts.
Opening the program this time will be the all original material of Owl Creek, comprised of Sarah Goslee Reed, Alison Cline, Skip Trask and Mike Petee.
The program is held at ThePlace@TheWoodward [102 S. Main Street in downtown Mount Vernon], a first floor facility on Thursday September 15 at 7 PM. Doors open at 6 PM and Owl Creek opens at 7 PM with Rosa Parks at 7:45 PM. A question and answer period with the portrayer comes immediately after the presentation.
For more information on this and upcoming programs visit www.elixirpresents.com, www.VisitKnoxOhio.org or call 740-392-6102.