New Lebanon mural pays tribute to former educator

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LEBANON, Mo. — Residents in Lebanon will notice something new at the corner of Washington and Commercial.

High school art students and faculty have completed a project honoring the city’s history and paying tribute to a former educator.

Eleanor Ford was a librarian at an all Black school in town during segregation. She was originally denied the opportunity to teach in town after the schools were integrated but stood her ground and became the school system’s librarian.

The current art director Elizabeth Barker had Ford when she was in school and spearheaded the project.

“The wonderful thing about it is the number of people that have driven by that have pulled over, that have jumped out of their car, to start sharing stories of what it was like to be in Mrs. Ford’s class,” Barker said. “And even though she passed away 29 years ago, she still has that kind of impact to this day.”

Another section of the mural pays tribute to the Osage Native American Tribe who were the original inhabitants of the area.

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