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Texarkana’s Pulitzer Prize Winner: Did You Know?

This past week the winners of The 2012 Pulitzer Prize were announced. This is a prestigious award given here in the United States for journalism, literature and musical composition. I knew about the journalism and literature. I’ve also gone to see the Pulitzer Prize photography exhibit before, when it was in Hot Springs a few years back, but musical composition? I had no idea!

Did you know that Texarkana has a link to the Pulitzer Prize? We do!

Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Our very own Scott Joplin! He was awarded The Pulitzer Prize posthumously in 1976 for his musical composition of his opera Treemonisha.  He composed it back in 1910, but it was never performed in it’s entirety until 1972.




public domain



According to Wikipedia the story:
takes place in a former slave plantation in an isolated forest between Joplin’s childhood town Texarkana and the Red rivers in Arkansas in September 1884. The plot centers on an 18 year old woman Treemonisha who is taught to read by a white woman, and then leads her community against the influence of conjurers who prey on ignorance and superstition. Treemonisha is abducted and is about to be thrown into a wasps’ nest when her friend Remus rescues her. The community realizes the value of education and the liability of their ignorance before choosing her as their teacher and leader.

How cool! So next time you’re downtown and you see the Scott Joplin mural, think about how much he accomplished and be proud that he called Texarkana home!

Here is the list of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize Winners.

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