Yesterday, as I was framing pictures for the new exhibit at The McDuffie Museum, I was in the back room by myself when I looked out the window. I saw a black man hurrying through the parking lot, holding what looked to be a framed picture.
We were closed and I was alone, so I walked up front to see if he was coming to see us. He was reading the “Closed” sign as I tapped on the glass and motioned him to wait while I opened the door. He came in and handed me a picture of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He said, “I heard on the radio that you had an exhibit on Dr. King and needed some items.”
He asked me how long I need the picture and when I said “Four months,” he looked worried. I told him he could take it back, but he said, “No, that’s OK.”
He said his wife was “crazy about James Brown, and she’ll be back later.” His name is Dewayne Lampkin. I want to personally thank him and his wife for the loan of their picture. You can see it at the museum immediately below Dr. King’s autographed book, on the second shelf in the same display case. I can’t think of a better example of community service than their response to our public request.
Keeping the community informed about what is happening locally also qualifies as community service. Sure, the media is in the business of making a living, but it is their business to decide what news or comments to report and when. I always try to thank the papers and the radio station whenever they report on an article or announcement related to the museum. So, I want to thank Dewayne, his wife, WTHO, The McDuffie Mirror and The McDuffie Progress for their help in getting our Black History program started. And I want to tell you other folks in the county that we will put on display all items of Dr. King and James Brown that you lend to us, but there’s only one shelf left in the case with the Dr. King and Dewayne Lampkin items.
I just framed today a couple of 24-by-18 photos of Brown standing at a piano, which Paul McCartney is playing, and of Dan Aykroyd holding a drink and laughing with Danny Ray, Brown’s famous announcer and cape man. Ray will visit us one evening soon at the museum. He will share stories and sign autographs.
The exhibit opened Wednesday. Our phone number is (706) 595-9923.