Culver's Black History
From Summer of 1964 to early 1968 I lived on South Plymouth street with neighbors of the Hamptons, Hodges, Dickerson,
Wilhites and Weavers
Also for a tear of two about 1966-1967 my brother had the South Bend paper route for the majority of the town - I took the
south half and he took north half which involved more the Academy area. Amongst my customers were many of the listed
Thelma Hodges Moorehead in a letter to the editor of the Culver Citizens names the backbone people of the African American
community - she states that if it were not for them "faculty row" would of ceased functioning in all reality if it were not for
their services - the same was said of the East side summer residents of that era - now a thing of the past.
The African American community came into play when the Culver Military Academy came into existence in 1894; and especially
when Henry Harrison Culver the initiation to the Missouri Military Academy:
On 26 September 1896 the Missouri Military Academy boys was ravaged by fire that month - Sensing the opportunity to save
Culver Military Academy H. H. Culver sent a telegram - "You have the boys, I have the buildings. Let's get together." - giving
Fleet the opportunity to bring his students, and faculty to Indiana. H. H. Culver had proposed an acceptable deal resulting in
Fleet's acceptance and H. H. Culver telegrammed back: "Veni, Vidi, Vici. The Academy is at your disposal. When will your party
start? Answer quick." Culver hired a private train for Fleet, his staff and the cadets to bring them from Mexico, Missouri to Culver.
On the evening of October 5th Head master Col. Alexander F. Fleet arrived along with the 72 cadets and five faculty members
among were Hugh Greiner and Hugh Glasswork; from there they went to the lake pier boarded the steamboats Peerless I and
Aubeenaubee for the short trip to the Academy.
They came with them as waiters, janitors, cooks and domestic help.
By coming North with the school they had hopes of making a better life for themselves and their families.
My only sad, bitter recollection of their lives were the one room shacks that lined the south side of the woods, I can
remember my mother driving down that road from St. Rd. 17 to __ and seeing the people living in such conditions.
The most memorable memories is the friendliness of neighbors Bob Hodges [he loved to fish and cook them!], William Hampton
and the Wilhites down on Plymouth Street.
Of William Hampton the Palm Sunday Tornado of 1965 is the vivid memory of him - he offered me and my brother sanctuary
his basement if the winds got worse. He caught me chasing mother's brand new trash can and lid down South Plymouth street
and told me to let it go - to get in the house and stay there - it was not worth a human life; but I chased it down anyway
and then returned home! I was only 13 what did I know then?
A. M. E. Rollins Chapel
The Culver Comics
- Robert Kyle
Culver Alumnus Fall 1968 - Culver & the Academy
"Bob" - Morsell Emmett Hodges
Thelma S. Hodges
"Bob" - Morsell Emmett Hodges Family
Charles Otis Dickerson
Hampton, William and Edna
Charle A. 'Ace' Byrd, since 1906 "in about every capacity". Pg 2
Charlie Dickerson, 1904-1953; Head waiter for 44 years and Alumni House stweard since 1967. pg 1
Roy 'Sheep' Scott, 1902-1946; Diinning Hall waiter and custodial spervisor and still on duty at the
Farm House. pg 1
George Simmons; Dinning Hall waiter since 1926 pg 3
Roy Watts, 1911-1964; Dinnig Hall and Beason Hall pg 2
Henry Wilhite; Dining Hall waiter since 1951 Pg 3