Fayette in Jefferson County, Mississippi — The American South (East South Central)
Charlie Evers & The Blues
In 1973 Mayor Charles Evers of Fayette and B. B. King began to cosponsor concerts at the Medgar Evers Homecoming in honor of the slain civil rights activist. Dozens of blues, soul, and gospel acts performed at the annual festival during subsequent decades. Charles Evers's formal involvement in blues began in 1954 when he became one of the first African American deejays in Mississippi at WHOC in Philadelphia. In 1987 he began a long tenure as manager of WMPR in Jackson.
Evers, an entrepreneur, civil rights leader, and politician, was born in Decatur, Mississippi, on September 11, 1922, three years before his brother, activist Medgar Evers. Following service in World War II the brothers attended Alcorn Agricultural and Mechanical College (later Alcorn State University), where they became involved in civil rights activities. In 1951 Charles Evers moved to Philadelphia, Mississippi, where he worked at a family-run funeral home and operated a taxi service, a bootleg liquor business, and the Evers Hotel and Lounge, which featured blues bands. After the funeral home advertised on WHOC radio, station owner Howard Cole asked Evers to start hosting a show himself. Evers played blues records and also encouraged his African American listeners to register to vote.
In Chicago Evers was industrious in both legitimate businesses and vice, as he candidly described in his autobiography, Have No Fear: A Black Manís Fight for Respect in America. His nightclubs, the Club Mississippi and the Subway Lounge in Chicago and the Palm Gardens in the suburb of Argo, featured Mississippi-born blues artists such as Muddy Waters, Elmore James, and B. B. King. After Medgar Evers was assassinated in Jackson on June 12, 1963, Charles Evers returned to his home state, where he succeeded his brother as field secretary of the NAACP. Evers organized boycotts, protests, and registration campaigns, and in 1969 Fayette elected him as the first African American mayor of a racially mixed town in Mississippi in the post-Reconstruction era.
To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the murder of Medgar Evers, B. B. King encouraged Charles Evers to found the annual Medgar Evers Homecoming, which featured several days of concerts, parades, and other activities in Fayette and Jackson. Over the following decades the multi-day celebration, also known as the Mississippi Homecoming, took place in various
Erected 2009 by Mississippi Blues Commission. (Marker Number 85.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the Mississippi Blues Trail marker series.
Location. 31° 42.694′ N, 91° 3.67′ W. Marker is in Fayette, Mississippi, in Jefferson County. Marker is at the intersection of Main Street and Medgar Evers Boulevard, on the right when traveling north on Main Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Fayette MS 39069, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Confederate Soldiers Monument (within shouting distance of this marker); Thomas Hinds (within shouting distance of this marker); William Carey University (approx. 5.8 miles away); Blue Mountain College (approx. 5.8 miles away); Mississippi College (approx. 5.8 miles away); The Baptist Children's Village (approx. 5.8 miles away); Mississippi- Fertile Ground for Leadership Development (approx. 5.8 miles away); Ebenezer Baptist Church (approx. 5.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fayette.
Categories. • Arts, Letters, Music • Civil Rights • Entertainment •
Credits. This page was last revised on July 8, 2017. This page originally submitted on July 8, 2017, by Cajun Scrambler of Assumption, Louisiana. This page has been viewed 85 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on July 8, 2017.