Her early schooling was in Merryville, Louisiana were here dad was the principal. During those years, the last of schooling for African-American students in Louisiana was eleventh grade. Upon completing eleventh grade, she entered Tuskegee Institute, completed the twelfth year of schooling and subsequently completed her B.A.Degree. She was a member of the Tuskegee 100 Choir, serving as secretary for four years.
Shirley often talked about her choir director, William L. Dawson and the fact that one of the choir's most exciting tours was the performance for President Franklin D. Roosevelt White House and the opening of Radio City Music Hall in New York City. Music was part of Shirley's life every day.
|George Washington Carver|
Shirley was a phenomenal woman! Her life was filled with doing for others and sharing with other. Even with having to raise five daughters and a son., she took on many tasks. She could do anything! She would do any job from repairing electrical appliances, to sewing her daughters' clothing from feed sack to canning fruit and vegetables to herding cattle. She was always her husband's help mate-writing papers, typing papers, running a store, teaching school, directing school's choir, serving a guidance counselor and earning a Masters Degree from Atlanta University.
|Mary McLeod Bethune|
Source: The Funeral Program of Shirley Lee
As the only African-American and female among a filed of nine candidates for state representative, Shirley was one of the first primary winners. Her opponent was a former educational supervisor. She also represented Louisiana as a delegate to the International Women's Year Conference.
We have many outstanding women and men in Tangipahoa and St. Helena Parishes, Louisiana who had made great contributions to our Parish, State and Nation. If we do not educate our youth about women and men who fought for the civil rights, education and other human and civil rights in our parishes the, question is who will? What an honor to write blog about an outstanding woman who served our parish and state.