Monthly Archives: September 2014

Leroy Jordan (African-American history interviews)

Leroy Jordan, who moved to Springfield in 1965, was the first black elementary classroom teacher in the Springfield public schools. He later spent 20 years as an administrator at the former Sangamon State University and was the second black to … Continue reading

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Georgia Hale (African-American history interviews)

Georgia Hale, born in rural Missouri, where she attended segregated schools, moved to Springfield in 1942. Hale became the first black teller at the former Central Illinois Light Co. In an interview for the Springfield African-American History Foundation series, Hale … Continue reading

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Robert Goza (African-American history interviews)

Robert Goza, a Missouri native, moved to Springfield in 1952 after marrying Marian Ritchie.  He was an early accounting computer specialist with the state of Illinois and active in Scouting and the NAACP.  In an interview for the Springfield African-American … Continue reading

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Marian Goza (African-American history interviews)

Marian Goza, a Springfield native, spent 38 years as a medical technologist at Memorial Medical Center. In an interview for the Springfield African-American History Foundation series, she discussed her career, her family, and involvement in Scouting and the NAACP.

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Jessie Mae Finley (African-American history interviews)

Born in Springfield, Danville (see below — ed.), Jessie Mae Finley (1906-2006) was a talented musician and founder of the Voices of Love, Joy and Peace. She also worked for the state of Illinois. Finley was named Springfield’s First Citizen in 1976. In … Continue reading

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Rudy Davenport (African-American history series)

Born in Georgia in 1928, Rudy Davenport grew up in Chicago, graduated from Roosevelt University, and moved to Springfield in 1966.  He worked for the State of Illinois and was an active volunteer with the NAACP. Davenport was one of … Continue reading

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Ted Curtis (African-American history interviews)

Ted Curtis, a Springfield native and U.S. Air Force veteran, became a real estate agent and later assistant real estate commissioner for the state of Illinois.  He served on the Springfield School Board for 10 years and was active in … Continue reading

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Theresa Faith Cummings (African-American history interviews)

Theresa Faith Cummings, a sixth-generation resident of Springfield, Illinois, was the first director of the Community Action Agency’s Neighborhood Center.   In an interview for the Springfield African-American History Foundation series,  she discussed the services the center provided, as well as … Continue reading

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John Crisp (African-American history interviews)

John Crisp, a Springfield artist and jazz musician, discussed growing up in the John Hay Homes housing project, performing as a musician, and teaching music and art to youth in an interview for the Springfield African-American History Foundation series. 

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Bettie Allen (African-American history interviews))

Born in Springfield, Bettie Allen began working as a mechanic as a teenager and continued into adulthood, while also working for state government  She volunteered in the South, doing voter registration and civil rights work, in the 1960s. In an … Continue reading

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