Goodbye to an old friend of this newspaper

Today’s edition of The Yazoo Herald marks the beginning of the 148th year of this newspaper. That’s not bad for a small business operating in a small town.

But while we’re celebrating this milestone, we are also sad to say goodbye to someone who contributed to over a decade of our history.

Irene Street, who published a weekly column known as “Street Talk” through the 1980s and early 90s, died this week at age 95.

Her column was like the social media of its era. She reported on community news. Mrs. Street reported on community topics ranging from children of local residents graduating from college to descriptions of a local family’s vacation. She kept us informed about wedding anniversaries and who had relatives visiting from out of town. She let us know about family reunions and even gave updates sometimes when someone in the community was sick.

Herald readers would often call or write her to provide information they wanted her to include in the column.

Mrs. Street was one of the last of the community correspondents. Decades ago almost every community had a correspondent to let everyone know what was going on in their section of the county. You could flip through the pages and find reports from communities like Free Run, Myrleville, Fletcher’s Chapel or Eden.

Those kind of reports no longer exist. Social media has filled much of the void these days, but community news reports focusing on everyday life mostly disappeared before social media arrived. Part of the reason for that is that many communities are not as close-knit as they once were. In today’s fast-paced society people don’t always get to know their neighbors like they once did.

We can’t help but feel like we lost something valuable with that change in our society, but we are grateful that we had Irene Street to keep our readers informed for so many years.

This newspaper couldn’t have made it 148 years without the valuable contributions of many people along the way. Today we say goodbye to one of those people.