Video from the Vintage Mill Sessions page on Facebook recorded by WestArtVideo that everyone should definitely check out. Here’s what they had to say about it:
The spirit of Vintage Mill Sessions have been blessed from the start. We have been in the presence of some great artists that have given their time and talent. One of those artist was Shealee who blew us away with this rendition of Ella May Wiggins’ “Mill Mother’s Lament”.
Completely unscripted and raw, this is the way it was meant to be.
More About the Vintage Mill Sessions:
Once a month, we come together at the Loray Mill in Gastonia NC to celebrate the life of Ella May Wiggins. Ella May Wiggins was a mother, textile worker, union organizer, and protest balladeer. On September 14, 1929 Ella with other strikers of the mill was traveling from Bessemer City to a union meeting in Gastonia aboard the back of a pickup truck. As they neared their destination they met a group of men in cars that were blockading the road, which forced the truck to turn around. The cars in the blockade followed the truck. One pulled in front of the truck forcing it to stop. Soon after, a handful of men stood out in the road with guns raised. One man pointed a gun at Ella May and fired. Ella May yelled, “Lord a’mercy they’ve gone and shot me.” Ella May was shot through the heart and died within moments.
Ella May was a Heroine for people’s rights and working conditions inside labor mills. She died fighting for what she believed in and paved the road for change. So join us next time in celebrating her bravery and hard work at the Vintage Mill Sessions at Growler USA, located inside the Loray Mill!