Thursday, June 4, 2015

When We Were at GHS

The following historical review of 1961 to 1965 was contributed by Marlene Jackson Jones; Marlene presented it at the reunion luncheon. She excerpted it from a much longer version that you can read by clicking here, or by using the '61 to '65 tab on the home page.

I guess we could borrow the opening line from “A Tale of Two Cities” and say “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” and it was our time at Girls High! The years 1961 to 1965 were full of historically and sociologically significant events. During these years we were changing the world. Things were turbulent and jubilant at the same time. Were you present and accounted for or was the world passing you by. It was a little bit of both for me.

I thought I would share with you just a few of the events that occurred in order to put our years at Girls’ High in context.

The Civil Rights movement was really gaining momentum.
  • United States Freedom Riders began interstate bus rides to test the new United States Supreme Court integration decision.
  • The first black student, James Meredith, registered at the University of Mississippi, escorted by Federal Marshals.
  • Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to an audience of at least 250,000, during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom and later there was the march from Selma to Montgomery.
The Arts were exploding:
  • Artists like the Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, and Motown Artists like the Supremes, Little Stevie Wonder and The Temptations burst onto the scene changing the world of music forever. 
  • Andy Warhol premiered his Campbell's Soup Cans exhibit in Los Angeles. 
  • Rudolf Nureyev the famed ballet artist defected so that we could fully enjoy his artistry.
  • We were in a race in space. Not only were the first manned space missions accomplished but the first satellites were launched that we depend on so much today.
Sports were exciting: 
  • Jim Bunting and Sandy Koufax were “perfect”.
  • Roger Maris hit 61 homeruns
  • And the Phillies almost made it!
  • Cassius Clay aka Mohamed Ali was Champ and controversial.
  • Politically we had “Camelot”, The Bay of Pigs, The Cold War …
  • The world was changing in so many ways. We had the best and the worst. Who of us will ever forget where we were when we learned that our President John Kennedy had been killed. We were at Girls High. The emotions still rise. Then later to see his accused assassin killed right before our eyes on TV.
These years were the foundation for where we are today in so many ways. The fifty years that have passed have been significant. The world still needs changing. Are we up for the challenge?

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