III. ACCORD Freedom Trail Site - 81 Bridge Street
Home of Cora Tyson - Lincolnville
This Victorian house in the historic Lincolnville neighborhood (founded by freed slaves after the Civil War) became a civil rights landmark in 1964. It was a gathering place for people in the movement, where they could meet, rest, seek solace, and get something to eat, courtesy of Mrs. Cora Tyson. By day, she was the cafeteria manager at Webster Elementary School, but she did extra work during her off-hours to support the campaign against racial discrimination.
Those who enjoyed her hospitality obliged her by inscribing their names in her family bible. It read like a "Who's Who" of the civil rights movement, including Ralph Abernathy, Andrew Young, C. T. Vivian, Dora McDonald, Fred Shuttlesworth, Hosea Williams, and others.
To see that the accomplishments and sacrifices of those who marched and sat-in and knelt-in and swam-in and waded-in (and were often beaten and jailed) were properly honored for their role in changing America and inspiring the world, Mrs. Tyson served in the 21st century as vice president of ACCORD (the Anniversary to Commemorate the Civil Rights Demonstrations, Inc.).
At a 2008 ceremony at St. Paul A.M.E. Church, on the 40th anniversary of the assassination of her most famous guest, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Mrs. Tyson remembered how much he enjoyed her iced tea, and told the press "Dr. King was a Moses."