Reverend Raphael Warnock Becomes Georgia's First Black U.S. Senator


(CNN)-As the Rev. Raphael Warnock makes history by being elected the first Black US senator from Georgia, he's thinking of the remarkable journey of his mother.

Verlene Warnock spent her summers picking cotton and tobacco as a teen in Waycross, Georgia, in the 1950s before becoming a pastor.
"Because this is America, the 82-year-old hands that used to pick somebody else's cotton went to the polls and picked her youngest son to be a United States senator," Warnock said in a speech shortly after midnight Wednesday.
Her story was not uncommon. In the Jim Crow South, many poor Black people built savings by working in the fields because it was almost impossible for them to own land, said Karlos Hill, chair of African-American studies at the University of Oklahoma.

At 82, Verlene Warnock still preaches at Bible and Prayer Ministries, her church in Savannah.
And her son, the 11th of 12 children, is going to Congress.

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