(1898 – 1985)
William Elie Street retired Wilcox County Agent, died in March 1985. He was 86 years old and was survived by his wife Mattie of Tuskegee Institute, three sons, all of Chicago, four grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.
A native of Ashland, he was a County Agent in Wilcox and Marengo counties from 1927 to 1939 and again in Wilcox County from 1947 until his retirement in 1968. During interim periods, he served as a vocational agricultural teacher and was employed with the Farmers Services Administration. He attended Tuskegee Institute.
As a county agent, Mr. Street stressed homeownership, community organization, crop improvement, and livestock improvement. He was instrumental in organizing Masonic Lodges in Wilcox County and other areas in the Black Belt. His successful work with low-income families was highly praised by his coworkers, and he was said to be a model agent for others who worked with this special group. He introduced truck crop farming, primarily cucumber growing, to his group of farmers and was credited with pulling many small farmers out of poverty to a point of improving their living standards and to regaining their self-esteem and pride in their occupation.
Mr. Street was recognized for his hard work and accomplishments with the small farmers in Wilcox County. He was instrumental in providing farmers with a midsummer income, something they normally experienced only in the fall.
He was highly respected as a religious and community leader in Wilcox County and as a man with a lot of wisdom and knowledge. Many of the church and elected officials often called on him to help solve problems.
He served for several years as District Deputy for the Masonic Lodges of Alabama and as a member of its Economic Development Committee.
In recognition of his life and contributions to his fellow man, the name William Elie Street is inscribed on the dedicatory plaque of the Extension Memorial Chapel.
Chapel Plaque Inscription Number: 139