Our Story | My Cup of Tea - Memphis Tea Shop

Our Story

Orange Mound

Orange Mound is the oldest African American Community in America. In 1895, a portion of the land from the vast Dederick Plantation was sliced into narrow lots and sold to African Americans for a small sum...houses were constructed by the same men who had built the finest homes in Memphis, and the neighborhood was complete in every respect with schools, churches, businesses, library, fire station, and parks.


“The House” was built in 1902, and stands stoically on the corner of Semmes and Carnes…Semmes is still considered the eastern boundary of Orange Mound.

The House Orange Mound Resource Center, started by Monroe and Joanne Ballard in Memphis over 35 years ago, exists to stabilize homes in Orange Mound.

Working with women from the Orange Mound zip codes, 38104 and 38111, volunteers and staff teach computer literacy, child-rearing education, GED training, job readiness, cooking, sewing, gardening, and other domestic skills to women who have limited knowledge and marginal exposure to home economics, parenting models and employment. 

  • Woodworking
  • Making Wooden Tea Boxes
  • Branding our Tea Boxes
  • Front Porch Tea Time
  • Ladies Sewing Burp Cloths
  • Tending the Garden
  • The House
  • Work for Life Class
  • Tea Life Class
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