A man who played a pivotal role in the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was from our area, and his life is being celebrated this evening as part of Black History Month. “We’re talking about Benjamin Mays.” Joey Holmes of the Laurens County Library said that Benjamin Mays was born in the 96 community of Greenwood County. “Well he was born in 1984, lived an extremely long and productive life; he was at one point Dean of Religion at Howard University and he was President of Morehouse.” Joey Holmes said that it was at Morehouse College in Atlanta that young Martin Luther King Jr. became acquainted with Dr. Benjamin Mays. “and he became one of King’s friends and mentors.” The Greenwood County native was an important part of Dr. King’s life, and death: “He gave eulogy at Dr. King’s Funeral.”
Joey Holmes said the Laurens County Library is celebrating Black History month with a special program this evening on the life of Benjamin Mays. The program begins with a viewing of a South Carolina ETV program on Dr. Mays that was produced a few years back. The documentary, called Born to Rebel, Driven to Excel, will begin in the Library on West Main at 6:15. Then at 7pm, the Curator of the Benjamin Mays Historical Site in Greenwood, Loy Sartin, will present a program about the life and works of Dr. Mays. “And he will be bringing some artifacts and some things to show and some things to tell about.” This special Black History Celebration will be held in the Laurens County Library on West Main in Laurens. The ETV program on Dr. Mays will be shown at 6:15, followed by the program from the Benjamin Mays Historical Site at 7pm.