Honoring the Life and Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Saturday January 25th was a special day in Linden as crowds gathered to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for his important contributions to the civil rights movement in America.

Warm weather welcomed observers as parade participants paid public tribute to Dr. King’s vision of love, peace, and justice for all.

Following the parade, all adjourned to the Courtroom of the historic Cass County Courthouse for the Annual Membership Meeting of the Linden Heritage Foundation.

President Joe B. Lovelace called the meeting to order.

Members present unanimously accepted the recommendation of the Linden Heritage Foundation (“LHF”) Nominating Committee to elect for three (3) year terms to the LHF Board of Directors:  Jana C. Bounds, Mary Dowd, Sam Higdon, John Knapp, and Sandra Skoog.

Jana C. Bounds, LHF Chief Financial Officer, presented 2019 financials – income, expenses, and distributions.  The Foundation began 2019 with a fund balance of $40,756.00.  At the end of 2019, the fund balance was $35,839.08.

In the Summer of 2019, LHF in partnership with Linden’s Main Street, Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development Corporation, and Lions Club, publicly set a goal – “Let Linden Shine” – to raise private funds to illuminate the historic 1934 Linden Water Tower with a color kinetic lighting system (unlike anything else in Northeast Texas).

Through the generous contributions of numerous individuals, businesses, and organizations, the Linden community achieved its fundraising goal in two months.  Ms. Bounds reported that total donations received for “Let Linden Shine” was $41,006.01.  After payment for lighting and installation, “Let Linden Shine” donated $9,590.00 to the City of Linden for the maintenance of the lighting system.

Malthus Northcutt, a Linden native, then presented an interactive history of the civil rights movement in the United States and the contributions of Dr. King that changed the world.

Mr. Northcutt, a Vietnam veteran, served 38 years in high-ranking positions in Federal agencies including the Department of Defense, U. S. Office of Personnel Management, and Internal Revenue Service.

Multiple choice questions challenged the audience to give thought to U. S. Supreme Court decisions, such as the doctrine of “separate but equal” and events important to the civil rights movement – Rosa Park’s arrest, Birmingham sit-in protests, the Selma-to-Montgomery march, and the assassination of Dr. King – to understand how far we’ve come but yet have to go.

Mr. Northcutt concluded by giving attendees a pocket edition of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States of America.

A reception with refreshments followed, hosted by the Foundation.

Afterward, the LHF Board of Directors met to elect Officers for 2020.

The 2020 LHF Board includes:

  • President – Jo Anna Duncan
  • Vice President for Preservation and Education – Gail Dorgan
  • Vice President for Marketing and Development – Sandra Westbrook Skoog
  • Vice President for Information Technologies –John Knapp
  • Chief Financial Officer – Pat Rountree
  • Secretary – Mary Dowd
  • Director – Wanda Burns
  • Director – Jana C. Bounds
  • Director – Barbara Teachey
  • Director – Lanita Williams
  • Director – Becky Wilbanks
  • Director – Brenda Deming
  • Director – Sam  Higdon
  • Immediate Past President – Joe B. Lovelace


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