March 15, 2017 Edition

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Hoxie Mayor Lanny Tinker speaks during a press conference on Monday at the Arkansas State Capitol as part of a day's activities to recognize the historical significance of the 1955 integration of Hoxie School. Also speaking at the event were DuShun Scarbrough (left), executive director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission, State Rep. Fran Cavenaugh (right) and (not pictured) Hoxie School Supt. Radius Baker.

Hoxie story recognized at Capitol

The story of the 1955 integration of Hoxie School was showcased on Monday at the Arkansas State Capitol.

An exhibit with information regarding "Hoxie - The First Stand" was on display in the second floor rotunda throughout the day.

State Rep. Fran Cavenaugh's resolution regarding the historic integration, which was the first voluntary K-12 integration, as well as the first to withstand a challenge, was the centerpiece for the day's events.

During a noon press conference, Rep. Cavenaugh presented a copy of the resolution to Hoxie Supt. Radius Baker. Both spoke at the event, as well as Hoxie Mayor Lanny Tinker and Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission Executive Director DuShun Scarbrough.

Cavenaugh presented the resolution to her fellow legislators in the afternoon's session, with several staying to watch from the gallery.

Dina Rose, past chair of the Chamber Board and an active promoter of the "Hoxie - The First Stand" story, said having a partnership involving so many entities is vital to preserving this story.

"It's a great task that couldn't be done without the dedication and faithful support of many," Rose said. "It takes a village, and we have a great one!"

Among those in attendance for Monday's events were Hoxie alumni who were students during the integration, Hoxie School Board members, members of the Lawrence County Historical Society and Lawrence County Chamber Board members.

Rose expressed appreciation for the partnership with the Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission and the support from David Appleby, producer of the documentary "Hoxie: The First Stand."

"It was wonderful to see everyone coming together to share the Hoxie story and work toward the establishment of the Hoxie Civil Rights Museum," Rose said.

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