WHEREAS, Mildred D. Taylor was born in Jackson, Mississippi, to Wilbert Lee Taylor and Deletha Marie Davis Taylor, and moved soon thereafter with her family in search of a better way of life to Toledo, Ohio; and
WHEREAS, Mildred D. Taylor graduated from the University of Toledo and served in the Peace Corps in Africa, where she remembered the stories her father had told her; and
WHEREAS, he began to write stories of the Logan family, based on the stories of her family, her family’s community, and her family’s history, a saga that chronicles the long arc of slavery to civil rights, bringing to life for now generations of devoted readers the scourge of racism and the beauty of love, beginning in 1975 with Song of the Trees, and comprising nine books, most recently (2001) with The Land; and
WHEREAS, those books by Mildred D. Taylor grew increasingly in popularity and critical acclaim, eventually earning specifically for Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, the most significant award for children’s literature, the Newbery Medal, and for her work the ALAN Award, the Coretta Scott King Award, the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award, the Christopher Award, and the New York Times Outstanding Book Award; and
WHEREAS, Mildred D. Taylor today returns to the place her life and her work began, to Mississippi, where much of her family today remains; to a Mississippi that no longer celebrates prejudice, a Mississippi that embraces Mildred D. Taylor’s work, and honors her life and her family and her people, and, indeed, a Mississippi that seeks to reconcile racism and rectify ignorance by honoring all people of Mississippi; and
WHEREAS, today Mildred D. Taylor is honored by the Oxford Conference for the Book, the great State of Mississippi, the cities of Oxford, Jackson, and all the cities, towns, and hamlets of Mississippi:
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Haley Barbour, Governor of the State of Mississippi, hereby proclaim April 2nd, 2004, as
MILDRED D. TAYLOR DAY
in the State of Mississippi.
DONE in the City of Jackson, on the fifteenth day of March in the year of our Lord, two thousand and four, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and twenty-eighth.
Governor Haley Barbour
P.O. Box 139 Jackson, MS 39205
Phone: 601.359.3150 Fax: 601.359.3741