Mississippi Moments Podcast

Mississippi Moments, a weekly radio program airing on Mississippi Public Broadcasting, is a partnership between the University of Southern Mississippi Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage, the Mississippi Humanities Council, and MPB.

The Podcasts

MSM 470 Hon. Reuben Anderson - Civil Rights Attorney

Retired Justice Reuben Anderson was the first African-American appointed to the Mississippi Supreme Court. In this episode, he recalls growing up during the Civil Rights Movement.

When Anderson enrolled at Tougaloo College in 1960 he dreamed of becoming an Civil Rights attorney. He remembers the campus as central to the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi. Anderson was the first African-American to graduate from the University of Mississippi Law School in 1967. He describes the challenges black students faced at that time.

As a young attorney in the late 60s, Anderson litigated school desegregation cases across the state.



Direct download: MSM_470.mp3
Category:civil rights -- posted at: 10:22am CST

MSM 469 Women & Trains during WWII

During WWII, women took jobs traditionally held by men. Bonnie Stedman of McComb began working for the railroad at the age of 17. In this episode, she shares her memories of working nights in remote railroad offices around Mississippi and Louisiana, relying on a toy gun protection and catching a ride on a troop train to get back home.

In a podcast extra, Stedman remembers when the dairy strike of 1945 turned violent, resulting in broken cameras and spilled milk.


PHOTO: Livinghistoryfarm.org

Direct download: MSM_469.mp3
Category:Mississippi History -- posted at: 10:47am CST

MSM 468 Heimburg & Tessman–  From Peenemunde to the Pearl River

Bernard Tessman and Karl Heimburg worked for Dr. Werhner von Braun in Nazi Germany on the V-2 rocket program. After WWII, 118 rocket scientists were brought over from Germany to work for the US Army. In this episode, Tessman and Heimburg remember those early days launching V-2 rockets in White Sands, New Mexico and the decision to locate the Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama.

After President Kennedy announced the goal of putting a man on the moon by the end of the decade, the decision was made to build a rocket test facility in Hancock County, Bernard Tessman led the design team. He recalls the swampy conditions of the Pearl River basin.

In a podcast extra, Heimburg explains why the decision to build the Hancock County facility was based on unrealistic expectations. Today, the isolated location of the Stennis Space Center allows for the testing of larger engines.

Direct download: MSM_468.mp3
Category:Aerospace History -- posted at: 9:46am CST

MSM 467 Samuel Olden - Spying for the CIA

Samuel Olden had just graduated Ole’ Miss in the Spring of 1941 with a Masters in History when he saw a notice posted on a bulletin board that the State Department was seeking candidates for service in South America. When the Japan bombed Pearl Harbor seven months later, he was stationed at the legation in Quito, Ecuador.

After serving in the Navy during WWII, Olden returned home to Yazoo City. He recalls being invited to join a new government agency called the Central Intelligence Agency in 1948. In this episode, Olden discusses his first field assignment spying on the Russians in Vienna and why he finally decided the life of a spy wasn’t for him.

Direct download: MSM_467.mp3
Category:Mississippi History -- posted at: 9:12am CST

MSM 466 David Dunaway - Junior High Coach

Coach David Dunaway grew up in Tylertown during the Great Depression. In this episode, he recalls how the town became his substitute family after his parents split up. Dunaway worked all through school to support himself and still found time to participate in sports. He credits the guidance he received from his coach and teachers for his decision to pursue a career in coaching/teaching at the junior high level.

Dunaway graduated high school in 1944 at the age of 17. He remembers playing for Mississippi State in the first college football game he ever saw, alongside State football legend, Shorty McWilliams.

PHOTO: Old postcard of the Tylertown High School


Direct download: MSM_466.mp3
Category:Sports History -- posted at: 9:57am CST

MSM 465 Mallory, McCarley, Wright - Best Christmas Memories

Steeped in tradition, the holidays are a source of vivid childhood memories for many. This week's episode is a compilation of some of our favorites: three Mississippians from very different backgrounds share their stories of that special time of year.

Lou Mallory of Natchez grew up in South Georgia, the daughter of a sharecropper. She remembers having little money at Christmas, but never feeling poor.    

As a girl, Ellen McCarley would ride the train from Port Gibson to Vicksburg to go Christmas shopping with her mother. She recalls her mother’s Christmas parties as having something for everyone.

Charles Wright would travel with his grandmother each Christmas to their family gathering in Bude. He describes the large spread of food and the atmosphere of Love.

Happy Holidays from the Mississippi Moments family to you and yours!

PHOTO: Robert C. Waller collection, USM Archives



Direct download: MSM_465.mp3
Category:The American South -- posted at: 8:32am CST

MSM 464 Marcelle Bienvenu - The Prudhomme Effect

Marcelle Bienvenu grew up in Saint Martinville, Louisana. In this episode, she discusses her family’s passion for cooking and how Chef Paul Prudhomme introduced the world to Cajun cuisine. Bienvenu was working at Commanders Palace restaurant in New Orleans when they hired Prudhomme. She recalls his “Trinity” of spices.

Bienvenu is a columnist with the Times Picayune and has published several cookbooks. She also teaches cooking classes and courses on culinary traditions of the American South.

Podcast Extra: Bienvenu explains how which part of Louisiana you’re from determines the way you cook Creole food.


Direct download: MSM_464.mp3
Category:foodways -- posted at: 10:09am CST

MSM 463 Gianakos - Traditional Greek Cooking for the Holidays

Kris Gianakos of Meridian comes from a large Greek family. In this episode, he discusses his favorite way to prepare leg of lamb. Lamb is a staple of Greek cooking. For his family, it was a dish usually served during the holidays. He also describes avgolemono soup, a traditional Greek chicken soup and explains why it always reminds him of home.

PODCAST EXTRA: According to Gianakos, wherever he travels, he runs into other Greeks eager to share their traditional foods. As examples he cites two Greek-owned restaurants in Memphis and Oxford.

PHOTO: Business2community.com


Direct download: MSM_463.mp3
Category:foodways -- posted at: 10:52am CST

MSM 462 Glenn Hughes - The Longleaf Legacy

Glenn Hughes is the Extension Forestry Professor at Mississippi State University. In this episode, he discusses the importance of the Longleaf Pine to our state’s history.

Up until 1890, harvested trees were transported by teams of oxen. Hughes explains how advances in technology led to the clear-cutting of our pine forests. He also reveals South Mississippi's connection to America’s most famous battleship – the USS Constitution –commissioned in 1797 and known as Old Ironsides.

PODCAST EXTRA: Early in our state’s history, pine tree sap was harvested for a variety of uses. Hughes defines the term “naval stores” and explains its importance.

Direct download: MSM_462.mp3
Category:Mississippi History -- posted at: 9:50am CST

MSM 461 Fewell Thompson - Memories of Old Hattiesburg

Fewell Thompson was born in Hattiesburg in 1891. In this episode, he recalls how, as a child, he frequented the home of his neighbor, Captain Hardy and his wife, Hattie Hardy, the town’s founder and namesake.

Thompson’s father had a horse and mule business in downtown Hattiesburg in the early 1900s. He discusses how his father would have the livestock shipped by train from Saint Louis and how people would come to town for supplies and spend the night camping in the "wagon lot" on Main Street.

During WWI the US Cavalry still rode horses into battle. Thompson remembers serving in the Army’s Veterinary Corps and the first time he tried to give a horse ether.

Hattiesburg’s role as a transportation hub earned it the nickname “The Hub City.” In a podcast extra Thompson recalls the many railroads that crisscrossed the town.


Direct download: MSM_461.mp3
Category:Mississippi History -- posted at: 9:09am CST