June 15, 2009 Rotogram


Mike Clayborne, president and CEO of the Tupelo-based CREATE Foundation, will discuss  the organization’s current activities in counties and communities throughout Northeast Mississippi. SOAR (Starkville Oktibbeha Achieving Results) is part of the effort.


Mississippi’ Commissioner of Public Safety Stephen Simpson heads the branch of state government that has oversight over a number of public safety agencies including the Mississippi Highway Patrol, Homeland Security, Bureau of Narcotics, and the Mississippi Crime Lab.


Invocation and Pledge: Grant Arinder
Attendance: There were 111 members (37 exempt, 2 honorary) present, and 89 (16 exempt, 8 honorary) absent.
Guests and visitors: Members’ guests included Andrew George of Dad Ernie George, Jennifer Glaze of Jon Maynard, John Tomlinson of Gary D. Jackson, and Mike Nosser of Donna Reese. Guests of the Club were Paul Sims, Starkville Daily News, Alison Noffsinger Ambassadorial Scholar, and Jarred Reneau, Ambassadorial Cultural Scholar.
Meeting notes: President Chip expressed the Club’s condolences to Rotarian Mike Hainsey on the death of his father.
He conveyed an invitation to a going-away reception for Rotarian Tony Vizzini who is to be the new dean of engineering at Western Michigan University.
It was noted that President-elect Martha would be leaving for England on Sunday. Before attending the Rotary International Convention in Birmingham, she and Graham plan to take a few days practicing “driving on the wrong side of the road.”


Attendance: There were 114 members (29 exempt) present, and 89 (24 exempt, 10 honorary) absent.
Guests and visitors: Davis Hunt and Rachel Bishop of Jody Ray, Jennifer Glaze of Frances Coleman, Joe Street, Melissa Mixon, Reuben Moore and Terry Kiser of Bricklee Miller, Mike Simmons of William Hilbun, and Nancy McCarley of Donna Reese.  Guests of the Club were Mike Lasseter, Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce, Jarred Reneau, Ambassadorial Cultural Scholar, and Paul Sims, Starkville Daily News.


More than 710,000 linear feet of correspondence and memorabilia of the United States’ 18th president are raising Mississippi State University’s scholarly stature.
“Our success in getting those papers tells the world that our university is a major player in America’s intellectual life,” said John Marszalek, MSU history professor emeritus. “Having the Grant papers here brings our heritage to another level.”
The 47-year-old Ulysses S. Grant Association moved its collection to MSU from Southern Illinois University after the death of longtime director John Y. Simon. Marszalek, a Pulitzer Prize nominated Civil War scholar, became the organization’s second director in 2008.
Just like the era for which Grant is known, the move occurred after an irreconcilable conflict between the association and SIU.
Responding to the most common question of the collection’s move to the heart of the old Confederacy, the biographer of William T. Sherman said, “Grant first became world famous for his amazing military achievement of capturing Vicksburg. And, ex-Confederate General Stephen D. Lee, who just so happened to be Mississippi State’s first president, was a key figure in preserving that battlefield.”
MSU now is one of the few institutions that can claim both an historical collection and a publishing project. Volume 31 of Grant’s papers will debut this fall.
Marszalek explained that the association’s goal is not just to collect original materials. Great effort is expended to assemble copies of any reference material.
At this point, the collection is closed; however, the intent is to organize and open it for scholars. He hopes to have the first digital copies of the materials online by this fall.
Everything is indexed on 4×6 note cards, so one of the tasks facing the staff is digital indexing.
The heart of the collection is letters to and from Grant. Other items range from 1,100 titles and 4,000 volumes of books to Mrs. Grant’s opera shawl to family scrapbooks of his death.
Marszalek invited Rotarians to an open house at the Mitchell Memorial Library from 2:00 until 3:30 on the afternoon of June 23. The association and collection can be found online at library.msstate.edu/USGrant/.

I have witnessed since my sickness just what I wished to see ever since the war—harmony and good feeling between the sections. I’ve always contended that if there had been nobody left but the soldiers, we would have had peace in a year. . . . We may now look forward to a perpetual peace at home and a national strength that will secure us against any foreign complication. I believe myself that the war was worth all it cost us, fearful as that was. Since it was over, I have visited every state in Europe and a number in the East. I know, as I did not before, the value of our inheritance. —U.S. Grant to West Point classmate and Confederate General Simon Buckner
13 days before Grant’s death from throat cancer in 1885

Places to go; people to meet — Ambassadorial Scholar and former Rotary Youth Exchange student Alison Noffsinger presents President Chip with banners from clubs she visited during her Middle Eastern studies. In addition to living and studying in Israel, she also visited Jordan, Egypt, Turkey and Cyprus.


Bearing a  handful of club banners from Israel, Ali Noffsinger reported on her year’s studies at Tel Aviv University. Although she did not pursue a full degree, she studied both Hebrew and modern standard Arabic.

Her interest in the region’s politics, culture and ancient conflicts was more than met. She promised a more in-depth report later saying, “You can’t tell one other story without another.”

Her service project was to teach English to Arab and Jewish children.

Part of her time was spent with a Jewish family and the rest was spent with an Christian Arab family.

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