Rachel and Constantin "Tin" Dangermond
DAY 234 Rachel and Constantin “Tin” Dangermond photographed exclusively for the 100 Men Hall People Project (100MHPP).
On May 5, 2018, I called Matt Stieffel to go see a Blues Hall in Bay Saint Louis that Brenda Comer had sent me a link to because she thought it might be a place for me to do my writing workshops. I was staying at Tommy Crane's house on Main Street with Tin and we were dressed for the beach but stopped to just have a look. We entered through the front doors of the Hall and another chapter of my life began. There are voices in the walls here Lee Seal says and an energy that never left from back when it was the place to be for Black folks in this area. I became the Hall's next steward. I'm a writer, but had never written a grant before, and decided to apply for a grant that crossed my desk - the MS Coast National Heritage Area Community Grant - I wrote that I wanted to strengthen the ties between the Hall and the community by inviting Gus Bennett to take portraits of people who had a history with the Hall. That was one part of a three-part vision - the 100 Men Hall People Project, the visual storyboard or Mural on the side to promote the Hall that Wendo and JoLean Williams-Laborde painted, and the larger piece - the Musician's Cottage to foster the music of our Heritage and invite musicians from around the world to come stay here and use the Hall for rehearsal and performance. (Credits for this piece to be documented later.) This past July 27 was our two-year anniversary here - we did not celebrate with a big event because among the many dips and turns - a Hurricane here, blue algae there, we are shut down for the year due to the pandemic - but there has never been any doubt in my mind the ancestors spoke to me that day back in May 2018 and entrusted me and my son to figure out not only our next chapter, but its next chapter. The Mississippi Gulf Coast National Heritage Trust Community Grant was the perfect first step in this story - I can't thank them enough for trusting me to carry out the grant, and for Gus accepting my invitation to come to Mississippi and do his magic. None of this would have been possible if the community here on the Coast had not opened their arms to us in good old fashioned Southern hospitality.
(Photo by: Gus Bennett | The 100 Men Hall People Project)
100MHPP RIGHTS USAGE TERMS: This official 100 Men Hall People Project (100MHPP) photograph is made available only for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photograph. The photograph may not be manipulated in any way and may not be used in commercial or political materials, advertisements, emails, products or promotions that in any way suggests approval or endorsement by the 100 Men Hall People Project or Rachel Dangermond.
© 2019 The 100 Men Hall People Project (100MHPP)
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