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the prestigious school, affectionately known as “Girls’ High,” in 1910. Unfortunately, much of Soror Minor’s life was shrouded in mystery. After being the Class of 1914 valedictorian at Howard, she pursued a teaching career in Pennsylvania, Alabama and South Carolina. She also had a career as a mezzo-soprano and was known for composing spirituals and even wrote a book, Soul Echoes, which featured 40 of her compositions, including “Get Off the Judgement Seat” and “My Lord Is a Refuge.” Following a marriage and subsequent divorce, Soror Minor fell on hard times and worked odd jobs before her death in 1963. Olive C. Jones Memorial Marker Over 60 members from Washington, DC area chapters joined National President Beverly E. Smith Oct. 28, 2017 at National Harmony Memorial Park in Landover, Md. to pay homage to Delta Sigma Theta Founder, Olive C. Jones. At the cemetery of her resting place, members gathered for a moving and touching Memorial Service and Marker Dedication Ceremony. Soror Jones was originally buried at Columbia Harmony Cemetery located in Washington, D.C. Her remains were moved to Harmony when Columbia Cemetery was demolished in preparation of Washington’s subway s60 DELTA SIGMA THETA SORORITY, INC. system in the early 1970s. Soror Jones’ marker is located directly behind the marker for Founders Florence Letcher Toms and Eliza Pearl Shippen. Soror Edna Brown Coleman, another Delta Founder is also resting at Harmony. Soror Jones and her family moved to Washington, D.C. soon after her birth. She was educated in D.C. Public Schools and became a teacher for the system after graduating from Howard University with a degree in music. She was also a concert pianist who gave performances around the country which was significant for an African-American woman during the early part of the 20th century. As a playwright and musical director, Soror Jones served as director/writer for an opera entitled “Red Bird”. The opera was first performed at the historic Howard Theater in Washington, DC May 1916. Soror Jones died October 25, 1925 at the age of 36 in Washington D.C. “Although she departed this life at the youthful age of 36, Soror Jones accomplished much by graduating from Howard University, serving her community, advocating for social freedoms and forever changing the course of history for African American women despite the odds set against her as a Black woman,” said Beverly E. Smith, National President of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. “It is fitting that this ceremony took place a few days past the 92nd anniversary of her death,” said Amber Williams, archivist on Delta’s National Headquarters staff, who serves as the staff liaison to the Heritage and Archives Committee. “Thanks to the dedication of Soror Regina Scott, a member of the Chicago Alumnae Chapter, who provided historical research, along with the Washington DC Alumnae Chapter’s Heritage and Archives Committee, who assisted with the research on the Columbia Harmony Cemetery, we were able to locate Soror Jones’ remains and bestow upon her, a marker befitting a Founder of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.” “The Marker Dedication was an inspirational day full of reflection on our Founder, Olive Jones, and her contributions,” said Soror Nichelle Poe, Washington, DC Alumnae chapter president. “The day allowed us to celebrate her life and give her recognition that is long overdue.” Markers have now been placed at 21 of the 22 resting places of the Sorority’s Founders. Posthumous Recognitions Outside the Sorority Just a few miles away from the marker unveiling for Soror Jones Oct. 28, two additional Founders of Delta Sigma Theta were being honored posthumously. The National Association of Social Workers honored Founders Winona Cargile Alexander and Frederica Chase Dodd at the NASW Pioneers Annual Program and Luncheon. They were honored for their contributions as social workers and received the posthumous designation as NASW Pioneers. Soror Dorcas Washington, deputy director of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, accepted the award on their behalf. Dr. Thelma Daley, 16th National President, contributed to this article. s Memorial marker placed at the final resting place of Founder Olive C. Jones at Columbia Harmony Cemetery in Washington, D.C. Oct. 28, 2017. PHOTO BY E. MISSY DANIELS Soror Nichelle Poe, president of Washington DC Alumnae Chapter, and Soror Beverly E. Smith, National President, lay a floral arrangement at the gravesite of Founder Olive C. Jones Oct. 28, 2017. PHOTO BY E. MISSY DANIELS


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