Former music teacher Lillian Carson prefers the term "retread" to "retire." Carson, who taught music in the St. Charles School District for 17 years, has enjoyed a new career since she was "retreaded" from teaching three years ago. She leads inspirational music programs and dramatic readings in churches, schools and organizations in St. Charles County.
Carson has performed since she was 4 years old in Indianapolis. She is the youngest of six children. Her father was a dentist and minister, and her mother was an evangelist. All were musically inclined, and the family often gave musical programs and readings in front of audiences.
"I'm a teacher at heart and I try to get my audiences involved," Carson said. "I like to think I bring joy to people of all races and motivate them through word and sound." Carson will be honored at a Black History Month celebration Feb. 22 at the St. Charles Historical Society, 101 South Main Street, St. Charles. The day begins with a reception and open house from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A display of memorabilia from Carson's life will be exhibited, and her tape, "The Gospel According to Lillian Carson," will be played throughout the day. Refreshments will be served, and Carson will be there to greet visitors. The celebration will continue from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Missouri First State Capitol, 200 South Main Street, where percussionist Glenn "Papa" Wright and storyteller Jacquelyn Wright will perform. Tickets to the Wrights' performance are free but limited. They must be picked up in advance at the First State Capitol Building. This is the third Black History event co-sponsored by the Historical Society and First Missouri State Capitol. Historical Society archivist Carol Wilkins said that attendance had been growing each year. "It takes time to build on these things, and each year we learn more and more about our African-American community in St. Charles," Wilkins said. "Last year, one of our St. Charles County Council members issued a proclamation celebrating Black History Month. It's a good sign when city and county officials get involved." More information is available from the St. Charles County Historical Society, 946-9828; or the Missouri First State Capitol at 946-9282. Other events scheduled in honor of Black History Month are: A display on the life of Jean Baptiste Du Sable at the Katherine Linnemann Library from Feb. …