Workshop Report: An Interview with Leann Hines of Levee Run Farm

You’ve already met Taylor Bowen Ricketts and Sylvester and Mary Hoover, two of the fieldwork visits our oral history workshop group made in Greenwood last week. Taylor and the Hoovers are good friends of the SFA and, if you ever attended our (sadly defunct) Delta Divertissement, you might remember sharing a meal or a drink with them. Oddly, though, we’ve never formally collected their stories until last week. We’re so glad we finally did.

Leann Hines, on the other hand, shared her story with us back in 2011 as part of our project documenting the Downtown Greenwood Farmers’ Market. Oxonians got to know her soon after, when she began selling her chicken, duck, and quail eggs at the Oxford City Market. When Amy called Leann this¬†year to ask if she would mind letting the students conduct a short interview with her, she was excited — and she had a plan.

Hines Storytelling_Hannah
Leann Hines reads a letter from her father during our workshop’s fieldwork visit to Levee Run Farms in Greenwood, MS. Photograph by Hannah Threadgill.

It was raining when we arrived at Levee Run Farm. Leann quickly herded all 15 of us into her egg house, where she situated her wheelchair into a corner, facing out at all of us. On the counter next to her was a family album. Leann wanted to read the letters that her father wrote to his mother when he was stationed in France during WWII. It ended up being a pretty emotional morning — for all of us. And some of that is captured in the piece featured above.

Thanks to Lilli Voorhies, Simi Kang, and Katelyn Frazer, aka Fieldwork Group #1, for their good work.

And thank you, Leann, for sharing even more of your story.

If you happened to miss last week’s episode of Okracast, Mothers and Chickens, Leann is there, too. We love and admire this woman a lot. She’s one hell of a farmer and a true inspiration. Listen to her story, and we think you’ll agree.