Ella Augusta Johnson Dinkins was the oldest resident of Eatonville, Fla., one of the oldest Black incorporated towns. She died last month at home in her sleep or, as town residents put it, “on her own terms.” She was 102.

Dinkins was a fiery elder who loved God, gardening, and a good town committee meeting. She also knew the Harlem Renaissance writer Zora Neale Hurston and helped initiate the festival that has brought more than a million people to the area since its start in 1990.

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