Observers attend District 29 hearing for many different reasons

For Jesse Nelly and Fannie Coleman, coming to the Federal Courthouse in Memphis to watch the district 29 election hearing was something different to do.

"Retirees can't find much to do everyday. And with this beautiful lady here, I just thought I'd take her down here to see how this goes. And we are citizens and we have no favorites. We're only interested in due process and protection for the citizens," Nelly said.

The pair said they've already expanded their wealth of knowledge.

"I'm learning a lot of things I didn't know about law," Coleman said. "It's just interesting to sit in the courtroom. Just to be a part of this process."

But for Brenda Wood, the trip from Hardeman County was more personal.

"It's not about Senator Ford. It's about all the black voters that have been disenfranchised," Wood said.

She came to hear from the voters, like Louvenia Hampton, who are plaintiffs in the case.

"I would like to say that it's un-American for them to throw out my vote because I didn't sign twice," Hampton said. "I did as I was told."

Whatever the outcome, the observers say they're walking away eyewitnesses to Tennessee History in the making.