Sorority marks 100th anniversary

Published 9:39 am Friday, January 18, 2013

Several members of Franklin Tri-County Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority last weekend celebrated the national sorority’s 100th anniversary.

They included MeChelle Blunt, president; Marie Sykes, past president and charter member; Vivian Lucas, charter member; and Deborah Faulk, past president.

“We were excited to witness first-hand a once-in-a-lifetime centennial celebration in our sorority’s home, Washington, D.C.,” MeChelle said. “We were among almost 13,000 registered sorority members who traveled to celebrate this historical milestone.”

The celebration began Friday, doing public service projects around the city and continued with a luncheon and gala on Saturday. The event culminated Sunday with an ecumenical service and black-tie dinner at the Washington Convention Center.

“The vision of our 22 founders on the campus of Howard University has inspired us to foster wholesome public service to make our communities a better place to live, work and enjoy,” MeChelle said. “We have grown as a sisterhood of college-educated women and have made a significant impact in the communities we serve.”

Delta Sigma Theta Sorority was founded Jan. 13, 1913, at Howard University. Today, there are more than 250,000 members and more than 900 chapters.

The Franklin Tri-County was chartered in December 1985 and has 47 members. The chapter provides community service and participates in public service projects in Franklin, and Surry, Sussex, Isle of Wight and Southampton counties.

Heard from Mark Person, who lives in Richmond and has ties to Person United Methodist Church in Southampton County.

Mark recently traveled to the Smithsonian’s American History Museum in Washington, D.C., to see a piece of American history from Southampton County.

Nat Turner’s Bible was on display at the museum and will continue to be on display through Sept. 15. The exhibit is called Changing America —The Emancipation Proclamation, 1863 and The March on Washington, 1963.

A family with Southampton County roots donated Turner’s Bible to the Smithsonian. Wendy Porter of Virginia Beach, who along with her father, Capron native Maurice Person, gave the Bible to the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

A slave, Turner in 1831 led a revolt in Southampton County that became the bloodiest in American history. In the aftermath, white militias retaliated against slaves. Turner was hanged six days later in Jerusalem.

Maurice Person’s father, Walter, received the Bible in 1912 when the Southampton County Courthouse was being renovated.