An inspiring message from Vicksburg

Yesterday, Dr. Jennifer Stollman, Winter Institute academic director, went to Vicksburg, Miss., to train Americorps staff. She posted the below on Facebook and graciously allowed us to share it:

I was at the Battle of Vicksburg site.

It is a quiet Monday morning and before training with the Americorps folk, I parked at one of the Confederate battle line sites. This is hallowed ground, as this is the battle where almost 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers laid down their lives. As a historian, I scan the land and recount the battle. As a woman of faith, I listen for the voices of the dead. I marvel at how far we have come and how far we must go in the fight for complete equality and equity. If we could hear the voices of the men and the land, I wonder what they would say. As the Americorps NCCC building rests squarely on the old battle site, I suspect that I have my answer. Mississippi and America–what kind of country do you want to live in, to leave to the next generation? Let the voices of our ancestors guide us to a new day–a day where because of difference, we extend our hands, hearts, and hope.

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