Monday, March 24, 2008
The Elks Lodge in Greenwood will be recognized with a Mississippi Blues Marker on March 28: "The Improved Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks of the World (IBPOEW) was formed in 1898 in Cincinnati by blacks who were excluded from the “white” Elks organization, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE). By 1899, 12 lodges of the IBPOEW, which became commonly known as the “black Elks,” were established in eight states, including Mississippi. In 1902, a female auxiliary group, the Daughters of the IBPOEW was founded. The chapter in Greenwood was established in 1925, and property at this location was purchased for the establishment of a lodge in 1927. From the 1940s through the 1970s, the hall in Greenwood hosted artists including BB King, T-Bone Walker, Ike & Tina Turner, James Brown, Percy Mayfield, “Little” Junior Parker, Roy Brown and others." (Read The Full Story Here)
B.B. King has purchased the juke joint Club Ebony in his hometown of Indianola from Mary Shepard who has owned it the past three decades. Shepard is ready to retire and her last day at the club is April 6. A Mississippi Delta Blues Trail Marker outside Club Ebony says several musical icons have played there since 1945 besides King including Count Basie, Ray Charles, James Brown, and Ike Turner.