Milam County Historical Commission
Milam County, Texas

All credit for these articles go to
Susie Sansom-Piper and
the Rockdale Reporter
Milam County Historical Commission - Milam County, TX
Statue of Ben Milam at Milam County, TX Courthouse
Old Junior High School Building, Rockdale, TX
Milam County Courthouse - Cameron, TX
Preserve America
At this particular time, the world seemed to have made a complete change.

The fabulous fifties and early  sixties were times when the baby boomers began to come into focus.
Poodle skirts with heavily starched crinoline undergarments so they could stand out were special.

The favorite Little Golden Book for children was published. “Old Yeller” was the favorite movie,
and the hippies began to become an intricate part of life.

The Cold Wars and the “never understood” Vietnam war were happening.

Elvis Presley was the favorite singer. The 60s were also labeled as the Kennedy Era, for it was
then when the popular John F. Kennedy became president.

The Civil Rights Movement began in the sixties, and there was a vast amount of unrest and explosive
upheavals. Nothing was certain, and most of the historical things that happened during this era
were unbelievable.

These phenomenal women were probably in their high school years, never really realizing the impact
that they would have on their hometown some day.

Emma C. Metcalf, Imogene Gray and Charles E. McDonald-McFarland were the next licensed
beauticians in the city. All operated in Rockdale, except McFarland who later moved to Houston.

Ora V. Scott - Aycock honor Graduate who began her teaching career in the Liberty Hill Community,
then later in Port Arthur. During the early beginnings of Integration, she made history for her
hometown as she became one of the first blacks to be a part of the Texas Education Agency. She was
a reading specialist.

Annie Marie Denmon-Ellison completed her LVN at Delmar College in Corpus Christi. She worked in
this city, later returned to Richards Memorial Hospital, and spent many years there as lab

Imie Mae Banks-Ledbetter - Aycock honor graduate began her teaching career in Sharp, later
became a licensed beautician, and a government worker in postal services in Houston, Texas. She and
her late sister, Emma, are owners of the Banks Apartments in Rockdale.

Doris Moore Hardeman was a well-known gospel singer who organized the former Hardeman Echoes.
They were well known in the Central Texas area.

Bertha Thomason-Kline - an Aycock honor graduate, was also a graduate of the Prairie View A. & M.
Nursing Program. She served as head nurse in the Houston ISD. She is also well known for her
Biblical teachings in many other cities.

Mildred Wilhite Lovelady - Aycock honor graduate began her teaching career in Marlin in the
field of music. She taught for one year at Aycock, and was transferred to high school during the
first year of integration. The following year she began teaching music in the Houston ISD.

Allie Mae Banks Powell - Registered nurse, who was a graduate of Aycock, but completed her
nursing education in San Francisco, California. She still resides in that city.

Margaret Banks Flowers - Educator who began her teaching career in Cameron, then to La Grange and
later in the Houston ISD working in this district until retirement.

Johnnie M. Black-Steptoe and Bobbie Nell Richard Castleberry - both Aycock Honor graduates
who taught in the Fort Worth ISD, and Bobbie also served as counselor for elementary grades.

Bette Smith Williams - Rockdale’s first black woman on the city council, serving for two terms.
She was also president of the Aycock Alumni Association for more than 20 years.

Helen M. Crayton-Rhem - Educator who began her career in Hearne, then to LaMarque and later Palo
Alto, California. She was a reading specialist, who also tutored outside of the classroom to
improve a child’s reading skills. (Aycock honor graduate).

Margaret Sanders Green - Kindergarten Instructor with Rockdale ISD. She also served as the first
president for the Aycock Alumni Association, and is a community worker. (Aycock honor graduate).

Mae Joyce Cashaw - LVN, who also provided special services for the home care service. Great
singer also, who won many accolades during high school years. (Aycock honor graduate).

Elma Lee Moultrie-Jackson - Honor graduate of Aycock who became the first woman postmistress in
the Manchaca area of Austin.

Flora J. Fair-Mack - Aycock educator and coach who was inducted into the Rockdale Athletic Hall
of Honor. (Aycock Honor Graduate).

Dr. Fannie L. Lovelady-Spain - Educator in Texas and California, has written a book, served a
term with the Rockdale City Council and was an educator on the Navajo Reservation in Arizona.
(Aycock honor graduate).

Delores Phillips-Beasley - Aycock honor graduate, educator in the East Texas area.

Eula A. Sansom-Hebert - Aycock honor graduate, R. N. who began teaching nursing education at
Snook and later became the first black Instructor at El Centro College of Dallas.

Barbara S. Sansom-Holsome - Music educator in Cypress-Fair ISD, began her career in Brownsville,
Timpson and Elgin, then later in Omaha, Nebraska. She has won many accolades for her musical
productions for elementary grades. (Aycock honor graduate).

Estelle Fair Clark - Aycock honor graduate who became an R. N. in the Dallas area.

Marie E. Moore Thompson - Aycock honor graduate who is widely known for her dedicated community
service. She was formerly a coordinator for the Texas Highway Department before retirement.

Annie Bell Page-Wesley was an all star athlete who was also one of the first inductees in the
Rockdale Athletic Hall of Honor.


These women were omitted from last week’s story which covered the 1940s and early 1950s.

Lucy Mae Brooks and Lucille Miller were the third and fourth midwives in the Milam County area.
Mrs. Brooks was also a large supporter of teenage activities, through her providing a place of
entertainment for this age group.

Ruthie M. Johnson Boney who was a qualified beautician as well as an educator for many years. She
began her teaching career in the Robertson County area, and later in the Rockdale ISD until

Charles Etta McKee-McFarland, Vivian McDade Everage and Ruth E. McDonald-Sumuel also joined
the licensed beauticians group and practiced their skills in Houston, Midland, and Austin.

Addie Pearl Cavil-Owens - educator, taught at Aycock, Rosebud, and also Compton, California. She
was instrumental in beginning many new programs, such as the federal program known as career
opportunities, and also the first Multicultural Ethnic Multicultural Center in the United States.

Dr. Uline Lovelady-Appling - was an opera singer and educator in Texas and California. She
formerly auditioned for Marian Anderson, and was successful in promoting one of high school choirs
at the white house during the Truman years.

Lillian Bacy Jones became the first Aycock graduate to graduate from Prairie View A&M School of
Nursing as a Registered Nurse. (RN). She spent her entire nursing career in the Houston area.

Rose Marie Arnwine was the second to graduate as an RN from the Prairie View School of Nursing.
She moved to the Dallas area and was employed at St. Paul’s Labor and Delivery for more than 25
years. She was also head school nurse of the Dallas ISD for 41 years.

Dr. Artis Ruth Lovelady-Hopkins was the author of a published English textbook, educator in
Texas and California, and an entertainer who was skilled in tap dancing.


Rockdale’s black women of the 1950s and 1960s
by Susie Sansom-Piper
Rockdale Reporter - February 16, 2012