North Carolina A&T

4-H Club scholarship.



In July of 1940, Levi Simmons, an African American student of the Menchew 4-H Club of Wilson County, was awarded the 4-H Club scholarship to North Carolina A&T. This black and white photograph shows Simmons standing in front of an acre of ripe corn, one of seven projects conducted that year. In the photograph, he is standing with his left hand on a cornstalk, which towers over him. His right hand holds a thick manila envelope.

Green ‘N’ Growing Collection (The History of Home Demonstration and 4-H Youth Development in North Carolina), Special Collections, North Carolina State University Libraries.


In the 1940 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer Junius Simmons, 44, wife Clara, 39, and their children Levi, 21, Joseph, 20, Frank, 15, Julia, 10, Edward, 9, Lettie, 5, and Thomas, 1. Though this census records the birthplaces of all the Simmonses as North Carolina, the 1930 census lists South Carolina for the parents and older children, including Levi. Junius’ death certificate lists Clarendon County, South Carolina, as his birthplace.

LEARN NC, a program of the UNC School of Education, finds the most innovative and successful practices in K-12 education and makes them available to the teachers and students of North Carolina – and the world.


Sarah G. Taylor, Class of ’39.

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Ayantee (1939), North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, North Carolina.

Sarah Gaither Taylor was born in 1918 in Charlotte, North Carolina, to Wilson County natives, Rev. Russell Buxton Taylor and Viola Gaither Taylor. The family resettled in Wilson by 1920. After graduating from A&T, Sarah returned to Wilson. In the 1940 census, she is living in her father’s household on East Nash Street. The census lists her father as a preacher and teacher, and Sarah and her sister Loretta Taylor as teachers. (Her oldest sister, Beatrice Taylor Barnes, was also a teacher.) Sarah enlisted in the Women’s Army Corps in Richmond, Virginia, in 1943. Sarah Taylor Macmillan died in Richmond in 1978.