Many, many long time Monroe area residents know Mrs. Mattie Shelbon. She was Mildred Swift’s assistant on her KNOE cooking show. For most of them, that is where their knowledge of her stops. There was so much more to her than that!
Mattie was born Lue Mattie Bass to Paul and Hanna Bass in the tiny Union Parish community of Litroe, LA. She was married to Roosevelt Shelbon, but they had no children. Roosevelt died in 1952 and Mattie never remarried.
Mattie was employed by the Noe family many years. When James A. Noe started his TV station, he put her on air with Mrs. Swift.
One thing I did find that was very interesting, took place in 1956. At this time, African-Americans who were registering to vote, were required to take a test on the Constitution. It was a thinly veiled attempt to keep them from registering. Governor Noe decided to see the process for himself and escorted two of his employees, Mattie Shelbon and Lena Pope to the courthouse. He was accused of stirring up trouble. He ended up explaining his side of the story to the News-Star.
Mrs. Shelbon became ill and retired to the Mary Goss Nursing Home. Her family, the Noe family and friends took care of her until she passed away July 2, 1993 at the age of 85. She was lovingly laid to rest in the Litroe Cemetery.