Thursday, April 24, 2008
University 'feeling good' - S.C. State keeper of James Brown’s memorabilia Brown exhibit opens in October
By LeeTant, T&D Staff WriterFriday, April 25, 2008
South Carolina State University has been selected to preserve the memorabilia of the “The Godfather of Soul.”
During homecoming week in October, the university will unveil a James Brown exhibit at the I.P. Stanback Museum and Planetarium. The exhibit will feature many touchstones of his legacy, including his original music scores, costumes, red shoes with the initials “JB” inscribed on them, portraits and a telescope, among many other items.
“It’s wonderful we can create an exhibit to educate the community and public on James Brown and his legacy,” S.C. State interim President Dr. Leonard McIntyre said Thursday.
The university will have custody of Brown’s memorabilia for up to three years while the various lawsuits surrounding his estate are resolved.
Brown, who was born in Barnwell, won two Grammy Awards over the course of his storied music career, which spanned half a century.
Brown, who was also known as the “Hardest Working Man in Show Business,” had many hit records such as “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag” and “I Got You (I Feel Good).”
He was also intimately involved in the Civil Rights Movement and was an amateur astronomer.
S.C. State’s selection as the only institution given the responsibility of preserving Brown’s belongings was announced during Thursday’s board meeting.
McIntyre noted that Brown set aside a large portion of his fortune to establish a scholarship fund so that underprivileged children in South Carolina and Georgia can attend college.
“He was very supportive of education. His will reflects that,” he said.
McIntyre and other S.C. State officials recently visited Brown’s estate in Beech Island. They were the first individuals other than family and attorneys to be allowed on the grounds since Brown died in 2006.
“It was quite a unique experience,” McIntyre said.
In addition to the exhibit, a concert of Brown’s music is also planned for the homecoming weekend festivities.
McIntyre was excited about the prospect of working with Brown’s caretaker, David Washington, to provide further insight and unforgettable stories about the legendary R&B singer. McIntyre hopes Washington will give lectures and presentations about Brown’s legacy to supplement the exhibit.
Brown’s late mother, Susie Behling Brown, was longtime resident of the Bamberg County Nursing Center and was educated in the county’s public schools. Brown made a $25,000 donation in his mother’s name to construct a porch and sunroom at that nursing home before his death. That project was completed early last year.
Retrieved from the Times and Democrat