Kathryn B. Jones
Kathryn B. Jones was born January 22, 1906. She moved to the Champaign-Urbana, Illinois area with her husband Edward E. Jones in 1941. Soon after moving here, she became involved in community activities. After joining Salem Baptist Church, she began working with the young children in the Primary Sunday School Class, helping to provide robes for the Sunshine Choir and assisting with the Salem Pre-School and in the recruitment of neighborhood children to come to Salem's Vacation Bible School. In the forties, she and her husband opened their doors to African-American students to live in their home because of lack of housing for them on Campus. She spearheaded a boycott against the Meadow Gold Ice Cream Parlor because of refusal to serve African-Americans. As an Instructor at Chanute Air Force Base, Ms. Jones was always inviting homesick Airmen to her home for Sunday dinner.
In the early fifties, the Jones' cared for many foster children. Throughout the sixties and beyond, "Mother Jones" remained a community advocate, spending long hours helping to plan, organize and recruit members for organizations, i.e., Concerned Citizens Committee, The Progress Association for Economic Development, Community Advocacy Department, the Economic Opportunity Committee to help improve educational and employment opportunities for the African-American population. She worked with other Senior Citizens as an aide and advisor to classroom teachers in Champaign Schools. She was also active with the Girl Scouts.
Kathryn Jones was and is still "Mother Jones" to the many she had known and helped during her life time.
Kathryn B. Jones died on March 27, 1999.