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Civil rights exhibit offers students glimpse into past

Several everyday items of old seemed archaic by today’s standards, according to Butler County’s youth.

Several everyday items of old seemed archaic by today’s standards, according to Butler County’s youth.

In order to know where you’re going you must know where you’ve been.

The Greenville-Butler County Library and longtime community leader Willie Mae Robinson recently displayed memorabilia from the Civil Rights-era. The event titled “Remembering the Past, Pressing Toward the Future” was recently held in the library’s main community room.

The exhibit contained all of Robinson’s existing Civil rights-era items and much more, including paintings of famous figures throughout black history, sculptures of work reflecting African culture, a collection of President Barack Obama memorabilia, a set of lanterns and several makeshift dolls made from household items like broomsticks.

The entire event was a joint effort not just between Robinson and the Greenville-Butler County Public Library, but also the City of Greenville, the Greenville Parks and Recreation Department and the Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce.

“We’ve been real pleased with the turnout from the community and we’re happy the school district partnered with us on this to bring middle school students to tour the exhibit,” said library director Kevin Pearcey.  “The archival photos of Dr. Martin Luther King’s visit to Greenville in 1965 have been eye-opening for some who didn’t realize that Dr. King actually came to Greenville and spoke at Harrison St. Baptist Church.”

The exhibit was on display Tuesday through Friday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today.  Former director of Rosa Parks Museum Georgette Norman will serve as guest speaker today at 11 a.m.  The exhibit is free and open to the public.