Ruth Holmes Mims’ father, Joseph Robert Holmes Sr., was three years old in 1863 when he and his mother walked off the old Holmes Plantation in Plum Point, Miss. “They had heard the slaves were free in Texas,” she said, “and they just left the plantation.”
When Ruth was a young girl, going to the Mid-South Fair took some planning; she had to earn the $2 she would need for admission and rides. “Rides were a dime back then,” she said. To get the money, young Ruth picked cotton. At $1 for 100 pounds, she had to pick 200 pounds of cotton to go to the Fair. Was it worth it? “Oh yes, I had a wonderful time,” she said.
A retired teacher, Mrs. Mims supported her favorite charitable interests with the Community Foundation of Greater Memphis as her partner. “When I told my son – he’s my financial advisor – about my financial desires, he said there was only one place I should put my money to make charitable donations: the Community Foundation.”
Working with the staff at the Community Foundation, Mrs. Mims found that establishing two charitable funds was the best way to accomplish her charitable goals. During her lifetime, she used one fund to support her church and several other organizations. She establsihed the other fund as part of her estate to provide scholarships.
Mrs. Mims learned the importance of scholarships when a $100 scholarship helped pay for her first semester in college. Through her estate, she will help others following in her footsteps.