By Lynn JonesTurpin – The Royal Vagabonds history is legendary throughout Jacksonville. For more than 90 years the social/civic club has been on the front line lending a hand with donating resources to community organizations.
During their historic tenure the club hosts their annual “Sweet Heart,” Valentine Day Dance and Golf Tournament to raise funds to award scholarships to students matriculating to college. They also support local organizations that extend public service support. Driving around the city, club President Seabon Dixon was astonished by the many individuals standing in line to receive food due to the pandemic. “I was like wow this cannot be happening. We just had to make a donation quickly to the organizations that stay true to help their community,” said Dixon.
After speaking with the club, they took immediate action swiftly donating funds to Forward Christian Center, Woodlawn Presbyterian Church and Masonic Park Lodge #90. “Our ministry is focused on moving people forward in their personal, married, spiritual life, while helping members and all people with their vision to succeed,” said recipient Rev. Charles Williams, of the Forward Christian Center.
The center provides meals every Tuesday till supplies last at their location on the northside.
Next up for the club is their annual holiday donation to local nursing homes. The Royal Vagabond Club was formed and organized in 1928 by professional men in the community with the desire to have a positive presence in the community for Blacks during the years of Jim Crow and segregation. The club sustained their legacy and has been resurrected in recent years to become once again a positive influence in the Jacksonville community. Shown l-r are club members and recipients Ron Render (past president), Seabon Dixon (President), Pastor Charles Williams (Forward Christian Center), recipient Willie Roberts (Masonic Park Lodge #90), Lou Myers (Historian) and James Sanders (Secretary). (KFP Photo)