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 482 Ace Cleveland - Southern Miss Sports Hall of Famers

Ace Cleveland served as the sports information director for USM from 1955 to 1986. In this episode, he discusses some of Southern’s most famous sports figures including basketball coach Lee Patrick Floyd, football and baseball legend Bubba Phillips, NFL Hall of Fame punter Ray Guy, and assistant football coach, Clyde “Heifer” Stuart.


Direct download: MSM_482.mp3
Category:Sports History -- posted at: 9:45am CDT

MSM 481 John Childress - The Navy Seals in Vietnam

John Childress joined the Navy Seals in 1968. In this episode, he recalls training teams of mercenaries for raids into North Vietnam. As a result of his efforts, the Viet Cong placed a bounty on Childress. He explains how a bomb left on an ammo pile outside his office nearly got him.

Childress also discusses how the Viet Cong charged Vietnamese businesses protection money during the war and in a podcast extra describes a raid his team conducted on a VC prison camp.

Direct download: MSM_481.mp3
Category:Military History -- posted at: 9:15am CDT

MSM 480 Carl Walters, Sr. - Growing Up in Laurel

Carl Walters was born in Laurel, Mississippi in 1904. In this episode, he recalls life growing up there and covers a variety of topics including the Lauren Rogers Museum of Art (which opened in 1923 as a memorial to Lauren Eastman Rogers), as well as, the town’s leading families and their connection to the timber industry.

Walter’s best friend growing up was a boy named James Street, author of Tap Roots and The Biscuit Eater.  He discusses his famous friend’s career as a newspaper man and novelist.

Direct download: MSM_480.mp3
Category:Mississippi History -- posted at: 10:23am CDT

MSM 479 Carl Walters, Sr. - Veteran Sports Journalist

Carl Walters of Laurel landed his first newspaper job in the 1920s working as a printer’s assistant. In this episode, he recalls how his love of sports led him to become a sports writer. Later, Walters began working for the Meridian Star. He discusses how the Meridian paper broke new ground by being the first to segregate the sports news into its own section. Walters became the first sports editor for the Jackson Daily News in 1946. 

Walters reflects on his career as a sports editor and columnist with pride and the innovations we take for granted today, such as the Fall Football Preview Guide. Walters was inducted into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 1993. You can learn more by visiting their website. http://msfame.com/hall-of-fame/inductees/carl-walters-sr/


Direct download: MSM_479.mp3
Category:Sports History -- posted at: 10:37am CDT

MSM 478 Don Frutiger - Hiding in Plain Sight

When Don Frutiger moved to Hattiesburg in 1964, he was surprised by the size of the LGBT community. In this episode, Frutiger shares his memories of a time when being gay was still considered a crime. He also discusses how a police raid on the Forrest Hotel ended in tragedy.

By the 1970s, there were several bars in Hattiesburg that catered to the LGBT community, but according to Frutiger, police were still monitoring the community well into the 70s & 80s.  He explains how one bar protected their customers.

NOTICE: This episode of the Mississippi Moments podcast contains frank and explicit language. Listener discretion advised.

Direct download: MSM_478.mp3
Category:civil rights -- posted at: 9:52am CDT

MSM 477 James

Starkville native James “Cool Papa” Bell played Negro League Baseball from 1922 to 1950. In this episode, he looks back fondly on the grueling schedule of long days and nights on the road with few amenities for little pay.

Until 1947, blacks were not allowed to play major league baseball, but Bell discusses how they would play and often beat the major league teams during winter season baseball in Mexico and other South American countries.

Direct download: MSM_477.mp3
Category:Sports History -- posted at: 9:38am CDT

MSM 476 Walter

   Baseball broadcasting legend Walter “Red” Barber was born in Columbus, Mississippi, in 1908. In this episode, he recalls his humble beginnings and taking his family to see the beautiful homes there after becoming successful.

   Barber began working at the campus radio station while in college as a way to earn extra money.  He soon realized he wanted a career in sportscasting. Barber was just starting out when he met fellow Mississippian, Dizzy Dean. He shares his memories of the famous pitcher. As a play-by-play sportscaster, Barber was driven to be the best.  He claims learning about each man on the team before the game allowed him to “talk with his eyes.”

   In a 40 year career calling games for the Cincinnati Reds, Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Yankees, Barber was famous for his colorful vocabulary and distinctive catch-phrases like "Sittin' in the catbird seat," "Walkin' in the tall cotton,” and "Slicker than boiled okra.” In a podcast extra, he discusses the inspiration for a couple of the more famous ones.


Direct download: MSM_476.mp3
Category:Sports History -- posted at: 9:44am CDT

MSM 475 Roscoe Jones - Remembering Schwerner, Chaney & Goodman

Roscoe Jones of Meridian grew up watching the news with his grandmother. He credits her for inspiring him to get involved with the Civil Rights Movement. Jones was 16 years old when he joined the Meridian chapter of the NAACP Youth Council. In this episode, he shares his memories of meeting Civil Rights workers Mickey and Rita Schwerner in the spring of 1964.

Schwerner, James Chaney & Andrew Goodman were killed in Neshoba County on June 21st, 1964. Jones recalls begging Schwerner to take him along for the ride. The deaths of the three men taught Jones to avoid publicity whenever possible. It wasn’t until the release of Mississippi Burning that he decided to speak up about his time in the movement.

Direct download: MSM_475.mp3
Category:civil rights -- posted at: 3:09pm CDT

MSM 474 Coach P.W. Underwood - Coaching the Golden Eagles

  After playing football for Southern Miss, P.W. Underwood returned to Hattiesburg as an assistant coach in 1963. In this episode, he remembers the team ranked number 1 in defense, three years out of four.

   When Underwood was named head football coach for Southern Miss six years later, he knew some changes needed to be made. At that time USM was known as The Generals and the mascot was a character named General Nathan after Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest. That year Underwood signed Willie Heidelburg, the first black player for a major Mississippi school and felt it was time to find a new mascot and establish some new traditions. He recounts the programs and processes he put in place to accomplish those goals.

  After a humiliating loss to Ole’ Miss the year before, USM was given no chance of winning their 1970 rematch. Coach Underwood recalls how the Eagles were able to beat the odds.


Direct download: MSM_474.mp3
Category:Sports History -- posted at: 9:27am CDT

MSM 473 Pete Johnson - On the Campaign Trail with Gov. Paul B. Johnson, Jr.

   In 1963, Pete Johnson’s uncle, Paul B. Johnson, Jr, ran for Governor of Mississippi. In this episode, he discusses how his father managed his uncle’s campaign and the strategy they successfully employed. He also recalls his uncle's unflappable demeanor.

   Because of term limits in place at that time, Gov. Johnson was unable to run for a second term and decided to run for Lt. Governor, instead. That year, Pete Johnson campaigned with his uncle. He shares some humorous stories of the characters he met as they went around the state like “Stiff” McCaffrey and “Blowtorch” Mason.

PHOTO: Moncrief Collection - Miss Dept. of Archives & History

Direct download: MSM_473.mp3
Category:Mississippi History -- posted at: 10:41am CDT