African American

Used with permission from New York State Archives. New York (State). Governor. Public information photographs, 1910-1992. Series 13703-83, Box 15, No. 1314 (Job #2-364)

Ersa Hines Poston grew up in western Kentucky during the great depression, went on to work for New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller during the Civil Rights movement and was appointed by President Carter to the Civil Service Commission, the first African American woman appointed to this position. On Sounds Good, Matt Markgraf speaks with Sarah Hopley, Special Collections & Exhibits Librarian, about the life of this remarkable woman from our region.

As an African-American, John Boyd Jr. might not be what Americans imagine when they think of a typical farmer. But Boyd has been farming his entire life, like his father, grandfather and great-grandfather before him. He grows wheat, corn and soybeans and has cattle at his southwestern Virginia farm.

Pogue Library at Murray State University is home to numerous special collections and oral history projects. Tucked among these documents is the Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph of Coretta Scott King and her daughter Bernice at Martin Luther King Jr.'s funeral taken by Owensboro native Moneta Sleet Jr. On Sounds Good, Matt Markgraf speaks with Sarah Hopley, Special Collections & Exhibits Librarian, about how this photo, and a thank you letter signed by Sleet ended up in the archives at Murray State.

Matt Markgraf, WKMS, courtesy of Pogue Library

Pogue Library at Murray State University is home to numerous special collections, including letters an articles from an influential educator, Clarence Timberlake. Timberlake is considered the "Founder of Vocational Education in Kentucky," devoting his life working to improve education for African Americans in the Commonwealth. On Sounds Good, Matt Markgraf explored this collection with Sarah Hopley, Special Collections & Exhibits Librarian, and learns how his legacy left a lasting impact on the region, namely in Paducah, Madisonville and Hopkinsville.

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We hope you join us for a panel on Race Relations in Hopkinsville on October 22 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in the War Memorial Building, titled "Where are we now, where do we want to be, and how do we get there?"

A panel of community leaders generate discussion on issues facing Hopkinsville. Panelists are Reverend Lisa Lewis-Balboa, Gwenda Motley, Matt Snorton, Judge Arnold Lynch, and Chief Clayton Sumner. WKMS is moderating the discussion.

Please note: Due to programming restrictions, this program will not be streaming online, but can be heard on an analog radio.  

Murray State’s listener supported public radio service WKMS-FM celebrates a special part of the station’s history with a recreation of The Black Cats Jump: Part Two, a thirteen part series of hour-long programs on African American big band music, originally created by the late Bobby Bryan and lovingly restored by Dr. Todd Hill and Mark Welch. 

Take a look at the latest obesity data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and you can see that the country's obesity epidemic is far from over.

Even in Colorado, the state with the lowest rate, 21.3 percent of its population is obese. Arkansas tops the list with 35.9 percent.

Viola Davis made history at Sunday night's Emmy Awards when she won for best actress in a drama for How to Get Away With Murder: It's the first time that award has gone to a black woman.

When Davis' award was announced, Taraji P. Henson — nominated for the same award for her work on Empire — gave Davis a fierce hug and a one-woman standing ovation.

Murray State University 1961 Shield Yearbook, Courtesy of Wesley Bolin at Pogue Library

A group of six college students walked from Murray State University across the street to a small restaurant, about to quietly protest its “white-only” policy. Entering the establishment, the five white boys from New York ordered meals for the group. When the food was ready, Nancy Tyler Demartra, the first African American to attend MSU full-time and eventually graduate, stood up to pay. When the cashiers refused her money, the entire group said “no, thanks,” and walked out. It took about three months of visits like these, but with the help of others on campus the group finally pushed the restaurant to adopt an “open” serving policy. That was 1961. Fifty-four years later, Nancy speaks with Kate on Sounds Good about her experiences at MSU and her accomplishments in the Human and Civil Rights arenas.

Wikimedia Commons/The National Institute on Drug Abuse

African American women in the South’s rural areas are less likely to suffer from depression than those who live in Southern urban areas.  That’s according to a new study from the University of Michigan.  The study uses data from the National Survey of American Life to examine how poverty and low education affect mental illness in black and white women living in the rural South.  

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