By KEN HALL
Special to the Daily Sun
Any people having any spattering of knowledge
can most likely credit their successes to a special teacher who took his
or her time out of their lives to spend valuable minutes with them. Over
the years you can look back with fond recollections of those people
filling that niche and how their guidance shaped your lives and the ways
you think. They have a treasured place in your memories.
Of the many students who passed through the
halls of G. W. Jackson High,
more than a few can say Miss Maggie Juanita Moore was one of these
individuals. Always interested in young people, Moore made sure the
students under her care were well versed in being responsible citizens
in life. She encouraged membership in such activities as Tri-Hi-Y and
Top Teens of America, to name a few.
The seventh child of Alfred and Lucy Moore, she
was a Corsicana native and a graduate of Jackson. She received a B.A.
degree from Huston-Tillotson in Austin in 1936. She obtained her
master's of education from Texas Southern University and pursued further
study at The University of Iowa and East Texas State. Her call to
teaching brought her back to Corsicana, leading her first to Booker T.
Washington Elementary, then to Jackson. In all, Moore instructed
students for 35 years.
The one thing everyone has said about Moore was
her attention to detail. No project she undertook would be halfway done,
and anyone who questioned her methods were quietly, but finally, told to
help or stand aside.
"One time we had a 'Tom Thumb' wedding at our
church (Bethel A.M.E.) for a fund-raiser," said Mable Scott. "She wanted
everything to look like an actual wedding, which meant the 'groom' had
to wear a dark suit and the 'bride' a white dress. My granddaughter was
included, which meant getting a dress for her. We had trouble finding a
veil, but Miss Moore suggested using a white hat and placing a thin
cloth over it. It went off without any problems and was the most
beautiful thing I'd ever seen."
Along with her school and church activities,
Moore served as chairman of the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center
from 1966 to 1973 and was a founding member of the MLK Holiday
Commission. During her time as chairman, Moore was instrumental with the
"Miss Community Center" pageant and the "Top Ladies of Distinction,"
both activities encouraging young African-American girls to participate
in talent shows and community service. These young ladies collected
funds for the United Way and visited the sick at Christmas as part of
Over her long years of service, Moore either
organized or participated in various extracurricular school activities
such as the "Queen's Coronation" at Jackson, a very fond event for the
students, and special events for the MLK Commission like "Guess Who's
Coming to Dinner," which sponsored guest speakers. With her passing Jan.
22, 1994, the community lost a bright light in Maggie J. Moore, but that
self-same light has become a beacon and inspiration to all who knew her.