Carole Boston Weatherford
I teacher Spanish at C E Jordan High School in Durham, NC. I’m writing to ask you for some advice. I wrote a grant for hand-held digital recorders. My students have written “Mi libro de opuestos” which is a book on opposites. The idea is for them to read their books and record themselves reading. Then burn a CD and place in into the back cover of the book and send the books to a local elementary school.
My concern at this point is: several kids’ books don’t look very professional so I’m hesitant to send them; second, I have some students who just didn’t want to do the project, even though it was a grade. Do you have any ideas on 1) how to get their books printed into a more durable format, and 2) ideas for burning the CD? I’m sure there are some mistakes out there that folks have made and could help me to avoid them.
I appreciate all you do to promote literacy and the profession of being an author. Congratulations on your successes!
Dear Mrs. Weatherford,
I am writing you in hopes that you will consider researching and writing a book for children about the first Black Navy Band that performed during World War II. First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, along with Naval authorities, college presidents(The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina Central, Johnson C. Smith University, North Carolina A&T State University, then A&T College and others) decided to do this through music. Thus, the B-1 US Navy Band was formed. Due to the national reputation of A&T’S band, the majority of the 44 member band was recruited from A&T. The rest of the band came from other Black colleges. The band was assigned to be the official military unit to accompany the Navy Pre-Flight School at UNC-CH. Of the original members only four veterans survive today. Only two are mobile. After the war, the majority of the band mates became school band directors throughout N.C. Others became social workers, lawyers, entrepreneurs, etc. One was A&T’s band director for over forty years. Attorney James Parsons was appointed the first Black federal judge in Illinois by President John Kennedy. He was the bands director.
Alex Albright, a professor at East Carolina University, wrote a book about the band, entitled: ” The Forgotten First: B-1 and the Integration of the Modern Navy”. Please consider this request that would preserve the legacy of this little known pioneering African American group of veterans. (Please google B-1US Navy Band.) I just finished reading “The Legendary Miss Lena Horne”. This is a sensational depiction of a most outstanding African American. I appreciate all that you do to preserve our heritage for posterity. I especially appreciate your response to a request I made about fourteen years ago to visit Wiley Elementary School in Greensboro. You talked about “Freedom On the Menu” because our students were presenting the play. You also conducted a poetry workshop. I will always remember this great event and how deeply our students and staff were affected by it. When you visited the Greensboro Public Library with Kadir Nelson, you autographed “Jazz Baby” for me. I read the book to my oldest grandson almost every day when he was little Best wishes for your continued success. Congratulations for all the awards and acclaim you have received.
Fanchonette M. Davis (My daddy was the drum major for the B-1 Band. He was the band
director at Dudley High School, here in Greensboro, for 22 years).
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