The Scott Ford House, Inc. (SFHI) has received a $50,000 grant from the Kellogg Foundation beginning January, 2021 and ending December, 2021, to document stories of Mississippi family members’ recollections of “granny” midwives in their family or community within the following regions: Jackson Prairie, Delta, Black Belt and Loess Hills. These Mississippians were delivered by “granny” midwives, or have Mississippi families who have had experiences with “granny” midwives. With these funds, at least 20-30 conducted interviews (meant for research and public viewing) will be videotaped, transcribed, audio edited, indexed and summarized. The interpretative program will include two interactive midwife video kiosks for the community, school children and tourists. Scott Ford House, Inc. is interested (among story contributions) in “granny” midwives’ roles in birth deliveries and “granny” midwives’ influential interactions with children.
Dr. Alferdteen Harrison, Executive Director of SFHI and grantee, noted that “interviewees must be willing to sign a legal release permitting Scott Ford House to use excerpts of their interviews.” Stories will be housed in the Margaret Walker Research Center at Jackson State University. Additional artifacts (journals, uniforms, certificates, bed pans, etc.) will be housed in Smith Robertson Cultural Museum Complex.
This project will continue the work initiated with the support of grants and reflect Scott Ford House’s, Inc. values by providing a statewide lens to understand Mississippi “granny” midwives. From these interviews, Mississippi gains a greater shared knowledge about its past while identifying regional pride and heightened sensitivity of “granny” midwives’ contributions to the birthing process. Further, Scott Ford House, Inc. is uniquely positioned to impact systemic racism in archival, museum and historic built environments because of previous collaborations with the JSU MW Center and the Smith Robertson museum where their holdings will be increased and available for all racial and ethnic groups, especially the closing exhibit at Smith Robertson Cultural Museum Complex. Hence, such funding adheres to the theme, “Reclaiming our Legacy and Shifting the Narrative of Mississippi Granny Midwives: A Storytelling Project.”
For more information on this project please contact Scott Ford House, Inc. Kellogg Project (P. O. Box 1173, Jackson, MS 39215 or firstname.lastname@example.org). For questions regarding the WKKF program, or to comment on this or any other proposed WKKF project, please contact Wesley S. Prater, program officer, at 269-968-1611 or email@example.com.