JCJC receives historical treasure from daughter of college president, J.B. Young

Written By: Teresa McCreery
Email Address: teresa.mccreery@jcjc.edu
Date Submitted: 2014-07-28 13:10:24

ELLISVILLE – After nearly 40-years of being in storage, historical treasures were delivered to the Jones County Junior College Alumni and Foundation Office by the daughter of JCJC’s second president, J. B. Young. Dr. Beverly Langford and her husband Charles Boyd drove from their Georgia home to Dr. Langford’s childhood home in Ellisville for a journey down memory lane. 
“I grew up on campus and I remember watching the former President’s House being built in 12 days,” said the only child of J.B. Young and his wife, the former Patti Callaway. She married the then Vice President of JCJC and Agricultural High School and the couple first lived in an apartment in the boys’ dormitory. Young would serve as a member of the faculty for six years before becoming president in 1940, leading the college for 30-years. 
“He is remembered for his strong moral convictions and his commitment to help students get a college education. PresidentYoung gave money out of his own pocket to keep students in school,” said JCJC’s current president, Dr. Jesse Smith. “Receiving these items from the time Mr. Young led the college is a priceless gift we will definitely treasure.”
The priceless gift includes some personal items from Young’s collection like a series of letters from Compton Jr. College in California concerning arrangements for the Jr. Rose Bowl football game, a program from the parade and football game and a signed football from players and coaches participating in that historical 1955 game. After agreeing to play, the college learned that the Bobcats’ opponent was racially integrated, which was against the social morals of the time in Mississippi. Thirty-seven players and 110 band members - including Jones student tuba player Terrell Tisdale, who eventually became the college’s third president, made the trip.
“Daddy’s only concern was for the students. He wanted them to play for the national championship and he wasn’t going to let legislators or anyone take that away from them. He made a commitment,” said Dr. Langford. “None of the parents ever complained about the decision.”
Amongst the rare treasures Dr. Langford found stored in a filing cabinet included an Ellisville newspaper from 1911 when the Agricultural High School opened, some early college catalogs and books, and amongst the nearly 300 pictures, was a picture of the four living college presidents at the time, an aerial picture of the original campus, as well as numerous homecoming parades and campus events.
“We are thrilled to be able to give these items to the college. We hope it’s something valuable to you,” said Dr. Langford.
Retired JCJC faculty member and current JCJC Foundation Director of Advancement, Robert Landrum was more than delighted to accept the items. Many of these items will be new additions to the Alumni and Foundation Office’s collection of memorabilia and historical items. Landrum said he was happy to be able to recover some of the memorabilia from the past.
“What a treasure of gifts by Dr. Langford. The recovering of these items took a lot of their time and effort. I enjoyed visiting with her because I was a student at JCJC when her father, Mr. Young was president and he was still on campus when I returned as a faculty member in 1974. He was a great man and so very interesting to talk with,” said Landrum.
Dr. Langford and her husband also took the time to tour through her childhood home, which is the former President’s House located near the old entrance to the college on Court Street. VP of Business Affairs at JCJC, Rick Youngblood and his family are currently living in the house and had the pleasure of hearing the stories about one of the family’s that called the President’s House, their home.
“It was a pleasure to share in Dr. Langford's excitement as she recalled childhood memories of growing up in a home that also holds so many pleasant memories for me and my family,” said Lara Youngblood.
Dr. Langford said her father held Board of Trustees meetings at their home and there were always students hanging out at the house. Some of the pictures she returned to Jones, included pictures of events held at the former President’s House. James Bonnard Young served as president of Jones County Junior College during the challenging years of World War II, the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam War, as well as the post-war enrollment surges.


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