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Growing Up in Pendleton SC in 1950s and 60's

Updated on December 3, 2015

Sandra Gantt of Pendleton, SC

Personal copy - not to be copied without permission.
Personal copy - not to be copied without permission. | Source

Sandra Gantt Shares Her Memories Of Growing Up In Pendleton South Carolina

Pendleton SC Town Council woman Sandra Gantt was asked to speak to the Leadership Pendleton Class of 2009. She was asked to tell how it was to grow up Pendleton. I was so glad that I was able to hear Sandra's talk. She was so interesting and enlightening. I asked Sandra if she would share her memories as part of this series I was doing on Squidoo. Sandra was kind enough to give her consent and share some wonderful photos as well as her speech.Thank you, Sandra for sharing your story with us.Note: This is a scroll down web page so please read and scroll and continue until you can no longer scroll.Sandra Gantt's last Town Council meeting was November 7, 2011. A reception was given in honor of her 14 years of serving on the council. See pictures below. Sandra was also honored to be the Official Christmas Tree Lighter as well as the Grand Marshall for the Christmas Parade in 2011.Update 2012 - Sandra was re-elected to Town Council and once again serve the town in this very important position. Sandra is truly "making a difference" Thank you, Sandra.Photo Credit: Photo provided by Sandra Gantt. All photos used on this page are the property of Sandra Gantt and are not be copied without her permission.

Important Pendleton South Carolina Links - A small historic town nested in the foothills of Upstate South Carolina

Pendleton SC is a wonderful place to live and a great place to visit. Come see us!

Sandra Gantt's Story of Growing Up in Pendleton - In the 1950s and 1960s South Carolina

We were in the days of segregation - that means to the few who are too young to remember, black people, or colored people as we were called then, were not allowed to partake of the privileges we have today. The national anthem did not apply to people of color because we were not in the land of the brave and the home of the free. In fact we were thought to be less than the animals in some households.We had to drink water from a "Coloreds Only" water fountain and that was hard to find. Our water drinking was done at home or in a cafe that catered to "Coloreds Only".If we went to any other restaurant our place was at the back door of that restaurant where we placed our food order. Eventually, they let us in the front door but we had to stand at a corner of the counter and place our orders because we were not allowed to sit down. I often wondered how was it that if we were not good enough to come in and sit down in those restaurants - how could there not be a problem with us cooking the very food that we could not enjoy.

Sandra Gantt remembers Ben Keese - and the Keese Barn and "the hundreds"

Of course, we had our own places that we could eat in without a problem. There was a cafe right next to Ben Keese's antique store on West Queen Street and a caf right up the street. On Belmina Street there was a small restaurant with a barber shop attached to it run by Mr. Jack Bell. The hot dogs and hamburgers were a real treat for us.Speaking of Ben Keese... I was raised to call him Uncle Ben Keese because both of his wives (who were sisters) were aunts to my Mother. He was a frugal but shrewd businessman.As a child, I remember him in church, (Kings Chapel AME) where he was an assistant minister, sitting in the pulpit wearing these bright white cat eyed women's glasses perched on his nose, reading the scripture. I thought this was the funniest sight I had ever seen and as you could imagine I did not pay attention to the scripture he was reading.His antique store was known all across the upstate and you would always find white people purchasing his antiques. He traveled to Philadelphia, where he had a home, a few times during the year and returned with a new load of furniture. He owned a lot of property in Pendleton and was always bailing out someone who had gotten into financial trouble. He was a legend in his own way.

Photo: The picture is of Sandra's mother's parents and her mom and her sister and her brother in her granddad's lap and cousins.

Ben Keese Barn - Years after it was a popular place of business

Keese Barn in Pendleton

After years of trying to restore the old Ben Keese Barn, the Foundation for Black History and Culture in Pendleton SC had to tear it down. The building was owned by the Pendleton Foundation for Black History and Culture who had great hopes of restoring this historic building. However, it was beyond repair.

Photo: Courtesy of Jerry Sloan

Sandra Gantt Remembers Public School in Pendleton SC

It was the time of Segregation

Back to how it was then...at the drug store soda fountain, we were not allowed to sit down - we stood at a corner of the counter until we were recognized or until everyone else that was white had been served. One time a young black woman, that had moved to the North, came home for a visit and went to the soda fountain where she proceeded to placed her bottom on the stool to place her order. Well you guessed it - she was refused service. They went so far as to remove the stools from the soda fountain to prevent it from happening again. Talk about overkill! I was told by Mr. Robert Thompson that when he was a young boy, we were not allowed to order a Coca-Cola. It seems that was a forbidden drink for people of color.The schools were separate with all black teachers trying their best to give us an education with used books and equipment.Can you imagine the first day of school and getting your books for the year to find that they had been written in and torn from the previous owners? It was a rare thing to get a new book for school. Can you imagine teaching science classes with only 1 bunson burner in the whole school?It took a student sit-in a few years after I graduated from high school to correct this injustice. The school district had the money but because no one had ever stood up to the superintendent and said enough is enough they did not bother to hand over new supplies.

Sandra Gantt remembers the Pendleton Movie Theatre - and other businesses around Pendleton SC

All that changed on the day of the sit-in when the students, in an orderly fashion, refused to go to class and demanded that they be heard. In the next few days, truck loads of new books, supplies for art and science classes along with all the other things that had been "not given" to our school suddenly appeared. My hat is off to those courageous students!At the movie theater in Pendleton - yes there was a theater - and all over the South, we had separate entrances to go into the building and that entrance lead to the balcony where we viewed the movie. Our concession stand was at that entrance also. Now that I look back over it - the balcony was a better place to view a movie than down on the floor. But I am getting off track.Shopping in Pendleton and elsewhere was a separate issue also. I remember going to Hunter's store and entering through the back door where we stood and waited until every white person would be waited on. It seemed that we were invisible at times.I remember going to Welborn's 5 & dime store and feeling like they really, really, really, did not want me there. The truth of the matter is that the only reason we were there in Welborn's 5 & dime store was because Brown's 5 & dime up the block did not have what we were looking for at the time.Brown's 5 & Dime, bless their hearts, had a candy counter with chocolate covered peanuts and other goodies. The owners never made you feel like a third class human being because basically they were kind people.Going to the doctor's office found you going in the back door to a separate waiting room with very old magazines, if you were fortunate that visit, and to your separate examining room. If you had an appointment for 8 am you would be lucky if they got to you before lunch. If lunch time came the office closed and we had to come back after lunch.

Civil Rights Act of 1964

Ah! but life took a turn for the better.The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed into law on July 2, 1964 by President Lyndon Johnson. The bill was introduced by President John F. Kennedy in his civil rights speech of June, 11, 1963 in which he asked for legislation "giving all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public - hotels, restaurants, theaters, retail stores and similar establishments "as well as" greater protect in the right to vote".This piece of legislation in the United States outlawed racial segregation in schools, public places and employment. It also enforced the constitutional right to vote. It was conceived to help African Americans.Now, things did not change overnight.It took Dr. Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks and many others who fought and lost their lives in order for us to receive the freedoms we have today.We have the freedom to go to the movies and sit anywhere we want. We have the freedom go into the grocery store's front door and purchase our groceries without waiting for all the white people to complete their purchases. We have the freedom to sit down in restaurants and soda fountains all over the world without any repercussions as long as we have money to pay for these privileges. We have the freedom to go into any store to shop and not feel like a criminal - that is unless you have sticky fingers. We have the freedom to drink water from any public water fountain we want to with looking for the "Colored Only" sign.I could not wait to get my voter registration card and vote for the first time. This was progress - a privilege that we were denied because of the color of our skin. I still take the opportunity to vote every time there is an election.When I first moved back to Pendleton, election time came, I gave them my voter registration card. At that point I was asked if I had married and I said yes, then I was told that I needed to change my last name to my husband's by this person at the poll. I guess you know what I said - very politely. Imagine, he was still trying to control me after not seeing me for 20 or more years. Did I change my last name - NO!

Barak Obama Elected President of the United States of America

I never would have imagined back during the time of my growing up I would see a man walk on the moon or even yet a Black man actually get the nomination from a political party to run for President of these United States of America.The next amazing thing I witnessed was that same Black man actually won the race and has become the President of these United States of America. He won because people (black, white, brown, and every color of person) came together for a common cause and put race behind. They believed in the man and what he represented "change".Dr. Martin Luther King had a dream that one day this nation would rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal".Now the feeling has changed in the Black community -any one of us can run for any political office in the country if we so desire. Some of us even win these offices.

Book Available on Amazon About Black Heroes - Click the link below to go to Amazon.

If you don't want this book, please search for another title from Amazon

The Pendleton Community Center

Does this mean that we have finally arrived? I doubt it but it is a very large step.In the years that passed, we have the freedom to attend any school we choose if we have the grades, money, and determination .The Black community of Pendleton has produced State Legislators, owners of franchises, lawyers, doctors, and just about any other profession there might be. We have forged ahead because of and in spite of the injustices we experienced.The Pendleton Community Center is where our children can go during the summer and have recreational activities and a meal each day. These children are taught arts and crafts and are provided a shelter from the streets and the dangers that lurk there for young children. After all, it was founded on the concept of providing these things for children of the community.The center is a meeting place for many clubs and organizations. The center has held many plate sales, fish fries, yard sales and reunions. Politicians find this a place where they can present their platform to the Black community. It was a shame that someone thought so little of the center that they defaced the interior. This will not stop progress - just a set back.

Pendleton Community Center

Pendleton Community Center
Pendleton Community Center

Sandra Gantt stands with the new marker for The Hundreds at Pendleton Community Center - The Hundreds marker was dedicated at the 2012 Grits and Gospel by Pendl

The Hundreds Marker at Pendleton Community Center with Sandra Gantt
The Hundreds Marker at Pendleton Community Center with Sandra Gantt

Pendleton Pride In Motion dedicated The Hundreds marker during the 2012 Grits and Gospel which was held at Pendleton Community Center.

Sandra Gantt's Three Most Favorite Books Available on Amazon - Just click the link and you will be taken to Amazon where you can order or search for something e

Sandra said that she these are just a few of her favorite books:

  • Roots
  • The Color Purple
  • Waiting to Exhale

Pendleton Memories - A Series

Pendleton South Carolina

Squidoo has been the perfect forum to promote our little town and now it is allowing others to record their precious memories of growing up in this small historic town located in Upstate South Carolina.If you grew up in Pendleton and would like to become a part of this series, please let me know by using the contact link located in my profile (upper right). Your memories must be written in a Word Document and accompanied by at least 5 photos in JPEG format.Betsy Johnson, Curator for Pendleton District Commission, shared these words:These memories are a precious resource that can provide a picture of our town for future generations. With the permission of the writers, hard copies of the Pendleton Memories Series will be donated to the Pendleton District Commission's Local History Archives. The Pendleton District Commission will preserve these stories and make them available for those wishing to learn more about our town.The mission of the Pendleton District Commission is to collect, preserve and promote the rich history of Anderson, Oconee and Pickens counties and to promote economic development through tourism in the region.

Kate Salley Palmer writes about blacks in the American Revolution

Kate Salley Palmer is from Clemson SC just a few miles from Pendleton and writes wonderful childrens books. This is one of them and there are a good many more that I highly recommend for young and older readers.

Sandra Gantt is a very talented vocalist - Here she is singing at Grits and Gospel, a fundraiser for Pendleton Pride In Motion

Sandra is so good to share her wonderful talent!

Sittonbull says that Sandra Gantt sings "At Last" better than Etta James - Here is Etta

One of these days I will get a video of Sandra singing "At Last".

Sandra Gantt honored at her last Town Council meeting on November 7, 2011 - Friends and family came to the Town Council meeting to surprise Sandra Gantt and to

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Sandra and I appreciate your visiting and hope you will leave us a comment. Thank you. - Anyone can comment. You do not have to be a member of Squidoo.

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      anonymous 19 months ago

      i go to riverside

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      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      I came to this page from your lens on Jane Edna Hunter and I thank you once again for introducing me to a remarkable woman. I am deeply grateful for ordinary people who become heroes for us all just by living their lives and being true to their calling. Clearly Sandra Gantt is one such.

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      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      What a wonderful historical tribute you put together here - I remember the first time I ever heard Barack Obama speak at the DNC in 2004 (on TV) - I bolted up in my chair, because it's rare in my time to be moved by speakers, especially political speakers (although I love politics) - I said to my family and my neighbor the next day, "Barack Obama will become President of the US" - of course my friends and family don't follow politics like I do, and they just gave me that glazed over 'why aren't you watching sitcoms look'...lol....All of this, and I'm Canadian!

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      Pam Irie 3 years ago from Land of Aloha

      I enjoyed this lens so very much!

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 3 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @Zhana21: That is a good question and I have thought a lot about it. I was so nave, I guess. I thought everyone was happy when I was young. We didn't have much but it didn't seem to matter because I don't remember ever really wanting for anything. It never occurred to me that blacks were treated unfairly. I know that sounds awful but I just did not realize. We were raised to respect everyone and the first spanking that I remember was for calling a local black minister by his first name. I had heard others call him that and thought it was ok. My dad quickly made me realize that I had made a big mistake and that I should call him Reverend. Actually, I didn't even know he was a minister at the time. I just remember him riding by the house every morning in his wagon pulled by a mule. We always looked forward to his coming by and he would let us pet his mule. I never called him by his first name again. That's for sure. I remember his beautiful daughters walking by on their way to school or work and they were always so friendly and happy. I just figured they went to their own school because they wanted to. We moved when I was in the 8th grade and that was about the time of integration and it wasn't until then that I really knew what was going on. It wasn't a big deal at our school and seemed to be a good transition but I knew from TV that it wasn't like that everywhere. Going through some old family history, we found a published 1930 obituary for our grandmother entitled "Tribute of Colored Friends of Mrs. Tate". It read that they loved her, will miss her and that she always had a good word and a smile for all who came in contact with her. So I guess in our family there was always mutual respect between the two races. I sure like to think so.

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      Zhana 3 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this very interesting lens. These stories touched my heart. How do her memories differ from yours?

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      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 4 years ago from United States

      Wishing you a year of many new blessings starting with this one! Happy New Year!

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      Michey LM 4 years ago

      Nancy this is such a great tribute for a special person and for Pendleton as well. I enjoy reading it again. Blessings!

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 4 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @anonymous: Wilhemina, I asked a friend of mine if she could answer your question and she was able to ask someone else and got you some answers that we hope will help:1. James Cox was married to Della Richardson Cox. Had his dry cleaners on what is now Town Street in a two story building was across the street from the Community Center. That building burned some years ago.2. Rev. Robinson (don't know his first name). His cleaners was located on the site where Bethel CME Church used to be located. In the spot where the Dentist Office is now, across the street from Crenshaw's and Plezu. 3. Eddie Green, had a pressing shop in a building across from the Keese barn. It is not known if he had dry cleaning machines other than a pressing machine. Later he turned the place into a restaurant and nightclub.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Hello it was nice to ready your experience growing up in Pendleton, I was wondering if there was a black owned Dry Cleaners in Pendleton back in the 1950s? If so, can you give me any information about who it was that owned the business? He had a daughter around the age of 15 or 16 years old. We are trying to find some family roots dated back to the 1950s. Thank you in advance for your help and anyone who can help.

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      Lorelei Cohen 5 years ago from Canada

      I wish that the world over could look at each other as one people. Prejudice and segregation still exist though in so very many aspects of our world. Hopefully one day this close mindedness will be non existent.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Dear Sandra,Congratulations on the honor bestowed upon you by the town council in November. We are sure it is well deserved. It is wonderful that you have received this recognition.It has been two years (approx.) since we have communicated But I have not forgotten our discussion. Hope to touch bases with you in the near future. Meanwhile, Take care of yourself and continue with the wonderful service you are providing Pendleton. Your cousins in Atlanta, Georgia, Ruth and Ronald Brown. (Aunt Chink's great nephew)

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 6 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @Nancy S Oram: Thanks Nancy. I don't know how that happened but it is corrected.

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      Nancy Oram 6 years ago

      Hi, Nancy. I don't know how important categories are, but somehow this is in the 1930s Nostalgia category. Great lens!

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      laurieSherrod 7 years ago

      Some reminiscing from a transported "yankee"...I am reading this while watching a TV program about Smokey Robinson. It occurrs to me that growing up in the 50s/60s we always had in our minds that there were certain things black people did especially well - and one was definitely music! (A bit like basketball now...)I grew up in a town in Indiana that had no black people - so my first exposure was not until the end of the 6th grade when I moved to SC. I had no idea that they went to a separate school! We had one black girl in my class. It turned out that she was officially white because one grandparent was white - and that's why she was in our school. In our town they called someone who was bi-racial a "brass ankle". But I was absolutely shocked to find out they had separate schools, churches, doors, businesses, etc. My mother hired a black lady to be our housekeeper - so she was the first "official" black person I got to know. She was a lowcountry "geechie" and I knew her for 45 years and never could understand her! (Geechies are also white - for us it was a reference to a heavy accent.) She considered us her "children" since she never had any.I really never got to know another black person until I graduated from college and started teaching school the first year of integration. That was interesting... There was a bright nice black teacher in the room next to me (who was probably my first black friend - the first one I could understand). But they did this "leveling" - grouping students - and all of my classes were nearly totally black students - and all of her classes were nearly totally white students. So "integration" actually took several years...One more memory... In the 1980s I lived in Spartanburg and belonged to the Country Club of Spartanburg where I played team tennis. We had some teams that we always had to play "away" matches because the club did not allow black people to play tennis on their courts!!! Someone made a stink about it and there was a top headline newspaper article where the management were quoted as saying "We're not discriminating... We have black employees." A few years later everyone just started "breaking" the rule and it seemed to disappear.

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      Joan Hall 7 years ago from Los Angeles

      Hi! I'm back to lensroll you to the Black History Month lens I just made about my father.

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      Joan Hall 7 years ago from Los Angeles

      Beautifully done. Thank you for sharing this. A lot of similarities to my father's childhood in segregated St. Louis, MO.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Sandra,You are an amazing woman and it is an honor to know you and an even greater honor to call you friend. Your beauty shines both inside and out!

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      I really enjoy reading all these comments and have thoroughly enjoyed Sandra being a part of this project.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to Sarah and Monroe] Sarah and Monroe, thank you for sharing your memories also. Because of our exeriences we grow. Thanks again.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Sandra, We attended Riverside School. Historical stories are interesting and learning experiences. It is a reminder of what we came through and shows how far we have come today. Thinking about the struggles of our Grand Parents let’s us appreciate the present and the future more. We have progressed. History shows us how we can have a healthy relationship with others. I can remember going to the store with my mother. We were greeted at the door from a distance, often hearing these words, "what can I get for you?" We were walked through the store while shopping because of our color. Everyone else was free to shop alone. We were young. We didn’t understand until elders explained the situation to us. Our Great grandmother of 102 saw many changes. Recently deceased, she did not see President Barack Obama elected. She did not always have the right to voice her opinion. Once granted, she voted in every election. As she would say, "I look back to say, thank you Lord!" Thank you so much Sandra!

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Sandra, this was truly an interesting lens. I did not grow up in Pendleton but visited my grandparents, and cousins (Ingrid) thoughtout my childhood and later moving there in 1982. I enjoyed your commentary, and beautiful pictures. Very informative. I shared this site with several friends. I am glad there is a way to support the center.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to Mayor Carol Burdette] Mayor, thank you, my friend, for your encouragement and support.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Dear Sandra,I was so pleased that you shared your story. It should make us more determined than ever to make our community more inclusive.I am pleased to have you as a colleague and a friend.Carol

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to papawu] Thank you for caring and giving back to those who need your help and support. Without you, and others who give back, many young people would not get the opportuntiy to experience a better way of thinking and living. Thank you again for reading our lens.

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      papawu 8 years ago

      Although his was before my time, I can almost imagine what it must have been like. I actually work with a great deal of black people. My mentor, who just passed away 3 years ago, grew up in those days in a little place called Hollister, NC. up by Rocky Mount. He told me numerous stories of what it was like along with his many older and younger siblings. However, being a "redbone" or light skinned, he was doubly picked on by both the whites and dark skinned black folk as well. I have never experienced the kind of strife and pure prejudice that Ms. Sandra and many of my friends and acquaintances have, but being Korean and chinky-eyed didn't make it all that easy for me growing up either. At least not with the kids. Today, I have a marketing business and I hire young people of color from the inner cities and the deep South where there are really no opportunities and teach them a better way of thinking and living. This is my way of giving back to a great black man who treated me like a son

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to Shelly I appreciate your words. Thank you.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      What an amazing story--and so well told by you. You are a wonderful historian! I lived through the fight against segregation--we we isolated from the issue in northern Minnesota. I was appalled that people in our nation--land of the free, had to face such conditions. May all the wounded spitits be healed. You've got me crying now.

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      Debbie 8 years ago from England

      Thank goodness for Martin Luther King. Thanks for bring Sandra's story to us in such a fine way.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to sittonbull] Oh John! You are way too kind. Thank you.

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      sittonbull 8 years ago

      Sandra & Nancy you have shared an important perspective of life in Pendleton and, as I understand it, life in a large part of our country during the pre-civil rights era. I remember the 50's & 60's vividly having grown up in Pendleton during that time and without question racial discrimination was predominant. We were racially segregated in our schooling, and for the most part socially. I didn't get to know many people of different ethnic backgrounds myself until my time in the Army and in business and social environments afterwards. Having had that opportunity, I have grown to respect, love and admire friends of several different races for who they are... and what they stand for... period. Sandra is one of those friends and let me tell you she is one talented lady. We serve on a business board together and I regularly enjoy her friendship and her talented singing at The Islander. "At Last" is one of my favorite songs ... and she sings it better than Etta James!

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      Sadheeskumar 8 years ago

      I never heard about her before, But After reading your lens, I am having a great on her. Nice lens. Five Stars to this lens.

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      Michey LM 8 years ago

      Beautiful lens, and idea, love it! All the best Nancymichey

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to Spook] Thank you for your kind words and the best to you also.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      A very nice lens about a wonderful lady. This was so nice of you to make this lens about Sandra, you are so sweet! - Rocket Moms rock! Hope you have a wonderful summer! - God bless!Susie

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      Spook LM 8 years ago

      I don't know how I missed this lens as it is right up my street. I have also been wondering what has knocked me off my perch in Local. Now I know and deservedly so. All the best.

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      capriliz lm 8 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this with everyone. Lovely lens!

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to OhMe] Nancy, thank your for encouraging us to put our memories in writing.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      What a lovely idea Nancy - blessings!

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Sandra, this lens is in the TOP TEN of the South Carolina Group. Yippee!

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to OhMe] I will think on it and let you know.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Thank you for sharing your story with so many of us. It's a remarkable life you've lived.I hope that the younger people will see this and appreciate the rich history that makes America what it is.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to Parnell Lovelace] Parnell, thank you so much for your kind words.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      We extend a tribute of highest honor to this distinguished citizen of Pendleton. She has contributed so much of herself and her family that demonstrates an enduring spirit of service. It is the values that foster positive change in our society. We thank you Sandra from a grateful constituency that have benefited from your service and sacrifice. Your account from your memory depicts my experiences attending school in Pendleton two decades before.

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      [in reply to Ingrid Jackson] Thank you for stopping by, Ingrid. Are you ready to share your memories for our series? Let me know.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Thank you Sandra for this lovely lens, it brought back many memories for me as well. Living in Pendleton off and on as a military brat, many of my Pendleton memories are much like yours. Registering to vote was a long process for me at the age of 21 and from that time on, I have never missed the opportunity to vote. These are precious memories that I won't every forget. Thanks for your time and the beautiful interview. Loved all your pictures too.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Sandra,Loved your 'Fro hear. Can I expect to see it at Bi-Lo any time soon?

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to Momtothezoo] Thank you for your lens and thank you for remembering that everyone did not share the same wonderful experiences in the 50's and 60's. I had to leave Pendleton and return back here order to appreciate it today.

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      Mountainside-Crochet 8 years ago

      Lovely and interesting interview by and about Sandra Gantt. Pendleton is very fortunate to have such a lovely lady in residence. It's very fortunate times have changed for the better so that Sandra and others can enjoy the same 'freedoms' we've always taken for granted.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      [in reply to mukunda22] I agree. I would like to thank everyone for reading our lens. It has been a pleasure to read your comments. Thank you again.

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      Kate Loving Shenk 8 years ago from Lancaster PA

      Hard to imagine that those times were actually not too long ago.But we must remember in order not to relive it!!

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      [in reply to bdkz] Thank you Bonnie for the Angel Blessing. It is greatly appreciated.

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      [in reply to spirituality] Thank you for the suggestions, Katinka. Of course, you are right and I will make those adjustments now. Also thank you so much for the Squid Angel Blessing.

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      religions7 8 years ago

      Great lens. I'd make her name part of the lens title though. And maybe something about 'black history' in either the title or some of the subtitles of the modules? Anyhow, blessed by a squidangel.

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      Sandy Mertens 8 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      Beautiful lens. Thanks for sharing Sandra's story. She is one remarkable woman.

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      Rich 8 years ago from Surrey, United Kingdom

      A very compelling read. Thank you for sharing this. 5*s.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Thank you, Sandra, for sharing your story and thank you, Nancy, for another very special lens.Like Joan, I, well remember waiting in the front yard to exchange waves and smiles with Peter Webb. 'Tho I don't recall going to Ben Keese's to look at antiques, I certainly remember Mama going there. In fact, a small chest I now have in my dining room may have come from Ben Keese's renowned business! Ummm, I wonder. Yes, Sandra, I, too, remember ... the way it was. But the treasure is ... the way it is now! And I am thankful!

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      Nancy and Sandra, I enjoyed this lens very much. I too grew up in a small southern town in the 50's and 60's, I graduated from High School in 1968 and this was the first year black students graduated from the high school. I remember the children were more accepting than some of the teachers. The times had begun to change. Thank you for sharing your memories.

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      GrowWear 8 years ago

      Hey, Sandra :) I remember those times and always felt it was wrong. It's good to see more acceptance these days even though it's still not where it should be. Hatred is a beast that won't go down without a fight. Kudos to you for your strength, courage, and leadership.Nancy, this is a wonderful addition to your Pendleton Series!

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      bdkz 8 years ago

      Beautiful, beautiful lens. 5 Stars and a Squid Angel Blessing!

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      [in reply to Momtothezoo] Thank you for visiting Jeanie. This series is so interesting and appreciate you and Sandra being a part of it. The next in the series will be Nell Reeves who grew up in Pendleton at a much earlier time. I am sure enjoying reading all these great works.

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      Nancy Tate Hellams 8 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      [in reply to Joan4] Wow, thank you Joan for the Angel Blessing. I can't wait to tell Sandra.

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      Eugenia S. Hunt 8 years ago

      Sandra, I really enjoyed reading your lens. I remember well life in Pendleton and the way it was for the Black Community. I have some wonderful memories but I also have other memories of things that disturbed me when I was a child and a teenager...children see things in a more innocent and open way than adults after the world has reshaped their views. I am glad you have written this lens and shared your feelings and the accomplishments along the way to make it better. For me, living during those days was such a contrast to the life I have lived since leaving Pendleton and my knowledge of such things has improved my prospective on people and their needs, especially when working with children. Thank you for your open frankness and I am glad you have the ability to share these things with all of us.

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      Joan4 8 years ago

      Wow! You and Sandra have done a beautiful job with this. Of course, as I was reading and remembering, I was thinking of Peter Webb -- Mama and Daddy respected him so much. I can still see him going down the road with his horse and wagon (or was it a mule?) He was a true gentleman. Sad as it is, Sandra, your story tells exactly the way it was. I am glad you told your story. Blessed by an angel!