Exhibition: “Picture Perfect: Zella’s Traveling Scrapbook”

For Immediate Release

Exhibition: “Picture Perfect: Zella’s Traveling Scrapbook”

MATTOON – An exhibit featuring a founding African American family in Mattoon “Picture Perfect: Zella’s Traveling Scrapbook “ will be on display at the Mattoon Public Library from January 5th to February 28th.

The story of Zella Powell’s family told through a series of panels and related family documents such as a scrapbook, photos and letters opens on Thursday.

Powell’s granddaughter, Stephanie Wright-Griggs, will make formal opening remarks at 4 p.m. Thursday on the library’s first floor. She will be available earlier in the afternoon on an informal basis.

Powell is one of two African American women who recently had an Eastern Illinois University residence hall named in their honor. Powell, a 1910 graduate, is the first African American graduate at EIU State Normal School.

The displays from Wright-Griggs show, among other things, how her grandmother moved from a middle-class experience in Mattoon to going to the university, which started a career as an educator in Mattoon and Chicago. The panels describe the family history, including their time in Mattoon, where Powell’s father was born.

“This exhibit significantly adds to the library’s place in understanding our community’s history,” said Library Director Carl Walworth. “The documents preserved by this family help tell an important component of Mattoon’s early years. We are looking forward to sharing this display and we welcome the opportunity to hear first-hand from Wright-Griggs this week.”


Museum Hours

9:30–6:00, Monday Until 8:00

Museum Location

2270 S Real Camino Lake California

The Loquet Museum fuels a journey of discovery across time to enable
solutions for a brighter future rich in nature and culture.