Forging Ahead, 1946–Present

The Citizens' Council Lesson Plan

Teaching Levels

Grades 7 through 12

Curricular Connections

Mississippi Studies

MS.8.3 - Evaluate the lasting impact of the Civil Rights Movement on Mississippi.

US History: 1877 to Present

US.3.2 - Trace the development of political, social, and cultural movements and subsequent reforms, including: Jim Crow laws, Plessy vs. Ferguson, women’s suffrage, temperance movement, Niagara movement, public education, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and Marcus Garvey.

The Citizens' Council

Theme and Time Period
In May 1954, the United States Supreme Court announced in a unanimous decision that segregation—the practice of separating Black and White students, by law, within the public school system—was unconstitutional. That decision, Brown v. Board of Education, set into motion decades of organized, White opposition in southern states that had, since the 1890s, enforced laws to ensure that Black students and White students would not attend the same schools.

The History of Mississippi's State Flag

Theme and Time Period

Inauspicious beginnings

On February 23, 1894, the Pascagoula Democrat-Star, in its “State News Boiled Down” section, listed news from across the state alerting readers to items like public resignations and appointments, legislative actions, warnings of floods, and new businesses. Situated between an announcement speculating that state senator C.

Burnita Shelton Matthews: Suffragist, Feminist, and Judicial Pioneer Lesson Plan


On December 28, 1894, Burnita Shelton Matthews was born into an educated, civic-minded family, in Copiah County, Mississippi. Although she aspired from a very young age to pursue a legal career, her father insisted that she pursue the study and teaching of music which he believed was a more ladylike profession. Following her marriage to Percy A. Matthews, she taught music for a short while in Georgia before moving to Washington, D.C. to accept a job with the Veterans Administration. She strategically chose to live and work in Washington, D.C.

Burnita Shelton Matthews: Suffragist, Feminist, and Judicial Pioneer

Theme and Time Period

Burnita Shelton was one of six children, and the only daughter, born on December 28, 1894, to Burnell Shelton and Lora Drew (Barlow) Shelton. She was part of an educated, civic-minded family. Her mother was a graduate of Whitworth College, a boarding school for young women in Brookhaven, Mississippi, and her father was a planter, cattleman, and also an elected official serving at various times as sheriff and tax collector of Copiah County and as the clerk of the chancery court.

Archie Manning: The Story and Significance of a Mississippi Icon Lesson Plan


As a young man Archie Manning excelled both athletically and academically in the small Delta town of Drew, Mississippi. Upon graduating from high school with valedictorian honors, Manning began his college football career in 1967 at the University of Mississippi. Under the guidance of legendary college coach John Vaught, Archie Manning and the Ole Miss Rebels football team achieved national recognition. Prior to the start of Manning’s senior year in 1970, the Rebels became one of the national favorites in college football.

Archie Manning: The Story and Significance of a Mississippi Icon

Theme and Time Period

Great football players are accustomed to receiving golden trophies and flashy headlines. Football and ballads, however, make for a rare combination. Nevertheless, in 1969, Lamont Wilson, a postman from Magnolia, Mississippi, literally began singing the praises of his favorite player, Ole Miss Rebels’ star quarterback, Archie Manning. Wilson was inspired to write the ballad honoring Manning following the Rebels’ 38-0 demolition of the Tennessee Volunteers during that year’s football season.

Jefferson Davis Soldier Home - Beauvoir

Theme and Time Period

Three weeks before Christmas of 1903, J. R. Climer of Madison County, Mississippi, became the first resident of the Jefferson Davis Soldier Home, Beauvoir — Mississippi’s home for Confederate veterans and their wives and widows on the Mississippi Gulf Coast in Biloxi. Climer was a Tennessean by birth and a veteran of Company A of the Madison Light Artillery that fought in General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia at some of the most famous battles of the American Civil War. When the war began, Climer was a tombstone agent in Canton.

Marcus Shook: A Mississippi Hero

Theme and Time Period

For more than seventy-two years, the ten-man crew of a particular World War II United States Army Air Forces B-17 has held a special place in the hearts of the citizens of Lomianki, Poland. The airmen named their Flying Fortress “I’ll Be Seeing You” after the song that was made so popular during the war by the renowned singer Bing Crosby that it became an anthem for American and British servicemen who were stationed away from their loved ones. Sgt.