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Mt. Holly Historical Society honors Mae Anthony

Mar 19, 2020 01:47PM

Mae Anthony (center) was recently presented with a special recognition award for her hard work in making the Mt. Holly Historical Society museum a success. She’s seen with MHHS president Richard Browne and vice president Joy Walker. Photo by Alan Hodge

By Alan Hodge

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The Mt. Holly Historical Society recently recognized Mae Anthony for her work in helping gather materials that will be used for the church and school rooms in the organization’s museum on S. Main St.

“She was instrumental in helping get pictures of the principals of the Rollins School that will be displayed at a later date,” said MHHS vice president Joy Walker. “She also helped research information on the school.”

The Rollins School was once the location in Mt. Holly where African-America children attended class. If anybody should know about the school it’s Anthony, after all, she was its first secretary.

“I worked there from 1961 to 1965,” she said.

“After that, I went to secretary school and went to work at the A&P office in Charlotte. I was the first black woman to work there.”

Incidentally, her name is one of those engraved on the Rollins School monument in front of the Rollins Apartments in Mt. Holly.

Anthony’s own elementary education in Mt. Holly took place in a one-room school called the Rankintown Colored School. 

“It was just a wooden building on old NC27,” Anthony said. “We had to sit in rows of desks. We had to step up on a big rock to get in the door. Now, it’s all grown up in woods where the school was.”

Anthony has lived in Mt. Holly her whole life, which helps explain her involvement in the MHHS.

“She’s never missed a program,” Walker says. “She supports all of the events.”

Anthony shared her own thoughts on why she is a MHHS member.

“When I first went to the MHHS museum it brought back memories,” she said. “It’s important to remember that our past is part of our future.”

 As far as being given her award, Anthony says it caught her by surprise.

“When they first started reading the bio of the person who would get it I was thinking that  person sounds familiar,” she said. “Then I realized it was me. I was totally surprised. I was surely shocked and appreciative.”

When she’s not at the MHHS, Anthony is busy in other Mt. Holly endeavors. She volunteers at the polling places and she’s active in her church.

“I just do whatever opportunity presents itself,” she said. “I like it in Mt. Holly, it’s always been my home.”