Martin Luther Smith was born and raised in Hattiesburg, MS. He earned his medical degree from Meharry Medical School in Nashville and went on to practice medicine in Lorman, Mississippi, at what became Alcorn State University. He also practiced in Hattiesburg and Muskegon Heights, Michigan, before he moved permanently to Cleveland, Ohio. Dr. Smith would often speak at health functions and promote wellness initiatives during his time in Hattiesburg.
Robert George Porter was a well-known businessman who owned Porter’s Café, Liberty Cab Company, and Porter’s Hotel on Historic Mobile Street.
Jesse Parker was a community leader who was the first African American to serve on the Hattiesburg School Board. Throughout his life, he worked with the local Boy Scouts and became employed as one of the first coordinators for Boy/Cub Scouts in the African American community.