A portion of US Hwy. 178 near the Mays Crossroads will be dedicated to Dr. Benjamin E. Mays on Sunday, June 22. The dedication will begin with a worship service at Mays’ home church, Old Mount Zion Baptist Church, 3107 Highway 248 South, Epworth at 3:00 p.m.
Dr. John Herbert Roper, Sr., author of the biography, Magnificent Mays, A Biography of Benjamin Elijah Mays, will serve as the guest speaker during the service, with music provided by Greenwood’s Martin Luther King Choir. Great niece Dr. Marshalyn Yeargin-Allsop and great nephew Rev. Dwight Powell and their family members, along with local and state dignitaries, will be in attendance. Immediately after the service, there will be a brief ceremony unveiling the sign on US Hwy 178. The portion of US Hwy 178 is to be named for Mays is from Mt. Pisgah to Mays Crossroads.
The unveiling of the sign will take place at the Mays Crossroads site.
Serving as the legendary President of Morehouse College for 27 years, Dr. Mays was a mentor and great influence upon Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He was also an advisor to Presidents Kennedy, Johnson and Carter. Dr. Mays also conducted the eulogy for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Born in Greenwood on August 1st, 1894, Dr. Mays rose to become a monumental figure in the field of education and civil rights. He has been referred to as the Founder of the Civil Rights Movement.
To learn more about Dr. Mays, the public is encouraged to visit the Benjamin E. Mays Historic Preservation Site. Located at GLEAMNS Human Resources Commission at 237 North Hospital Street in Greenwood, the site serves as the destination for individuals and groups to learn about the remarkable life of the legendary President of Morehouse College. The site, which showcases Dr. Mays' birth home and a one-room African-American 1800's school identical to Dr. Mays’ childhood elementary school, has been developed to represent an authentic sharecropper's homestead, circa 1900. A museum, adjoining the birth home, showcases an extraordinary collection of photos of Dr. Mays' life from the early 1900’s to the 1980s, as well as a collection of his books, articles, films and audio speeches.