Rocky Fork is a new art exhibit that recently opened in Hatheway Cultural Center Gallery.
The exhibit features recordings of African-Americans during the 1800s and 1900’s such as William Bailey (Halbert), Mary Ann Otley, Edith and Frank Kennedy, John Anderson Matlock, and many others that bring it to life.
There are also a handful of mini biographies featured on the walls as well, including three big family trees of the Hindman, Green, and Baker families.
On Wednesday Feb.12th, 2014 the Rocky Fork Exhibit opened. This event took place from 6 p.m to 9 p.m. in the Hatheway Cultural Center Gallery. Speakers began at 7 p.m.
Lewis and Clark Community College President, Dr. Dale T. Chapman began by welcoming everyone to Rocky Fork.
Dr. Ed Hightower, an L&C board member, and also the superintendent of the Edwardsville School District followed with a message that included 150 years of Rocky Fork will soon be celebrated. Hightower also expressed admiration for Mannie Jackson.
Jackson is a philanthropist, and an Edwardsville High School graduate.
“I am impressed with how the Rocky Fork books are going, the initiative is change. Change will have some affect on us,” Jackson said in closing.
Jim Price, professor of Art, History & Culture, at L&C conveyed that these extraordinary and ordinary stories bring everyone together and tie into Rocky Fork. “I am humbled to be a part of this school project!”
As the night progressed Charlotte Johnson, who does community and genealogical research also addressed those in attendance. She mentioned that freedom and worship is what the people who attended Rocky Fork were seeking.
She left with the following two quotes “All night, all day angels watching over me”,” This is your story, this is your song”
Preaching to the congregation that were present, was Pastor Brian Williams, of Rocky Fork New Bethel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church. He prayed over everyone that was in assemblage, and ended with “The world is still spinning, and we’re still serving the Lord!”
“I think it’s beautiful that they put it out like this so people can see it. It makes you feel good to know where you came from and how you got there,” said exhibit observer Janet Berry.
If you are interested in going to this gallery. It’s in Hatheway Cultural Center Gallery from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily from Feb. 12 to Mar.21, 2014