Alumnus donates garment for display in ECSU's Art Department

Bonnie Winston
July 05, 2011


There's nothing that Thomas Henry Hastye III wouldn't do for Elizabeth City State University. His alma mater, Hastye said, "is my heart."

The 1979 graduate and former four-term president of the Greensboro Greater Triad Chapter of the ECSU National Alumni Association has given money to the school. Now, his latest gift is an elaborately embroidered, three-piece garment from Sierra Leone worn by men of the Fula tribe.

Made of a fabric like brocade, the golden-taupe pants, dashiki-like tunic and outer flowing robe with a light gold, embroidered geometric pattern clearly would be worn for special ceremony and, Hastye added, by someone of high status or highly respected within the tribal community.

The garment was a gift to Hastye in the mid-1990s by a friend and colleague who was from Sierra Leone. It is now on display at ECSU in a glass case in the Mickey L. Burnim Fine Arts Center.