The Great Depression pushed cotton prices to drastically low levels. The Memphis economy was suffering.
In early 1931, Arthur Halle and a group of businessmen founded a festival to promote cotton and Memphis. The first Cotton Carnival was held in March, but soon moved to May, a warmer month. Today’s Carnival is usually held the first week of June.
Because of segregation, blacks could not participate. So Dr. R.Q. Venson founded what became the Cotton Makers Jubilee in 1935 for African-Americans. The events ran parallel to one another for nearly half a century.
May 27, 2013 – Face painter Shun Stotts, proprietor of Parties with Pizzazz, was hired by the Grizzlies to decorate fans such as Terrihanna Ingram outside the FedExForum during the playoffs. She said the high-profile job has led to additional business.
May 27th, the last Monday in May, is Memorial Day. Americans pause to remember and honor those who died defending our country. The observance began at Waterloo, NY on May 5, 1865, as a tribute to Union Soldiers.
For years, Southern states had separate Memorial Days. For example, Tennessee's was June 3.
Memorial Day now honors the dead of all wars in which the United States has fought. Congress declared it a Federal Holiday in 1971. Tennessee is nicknamed the Volunteer State because so many of its citizens have enlisted when needed.