Thank you for visiting my website. I am very passionate about the value of stories and have dedicated my life to being the best storyteller I can be. The purpose of this web site is not only to familiarize you with what I do, but to offer you a clearer picture of why I have chosen this career path.  My great grandmother told my sister and I stories to make us behave. I hated those stories and I didn’t think too much of my great grandmother. But whenever something came up that caused me to question myself, I would think of her stories and later I was so sorry I didn’t appreciate her. At that time even though I didn’t realize it then,I really was listening. When I became aware of how much of an impact she had on me, she was gone. Well, I hope she has been listening to me share her stories all these years. Now, by telling stories, my aim is to help my listeners validate themselves and not to ever give up on their dreams.

My greatest asset is that I love people. I am a Community Scholar, and Artist as Teacher through the Missouri Folk Arts Program. I’m also an author, speaker, workshop facilitator, and vocalist. My 35 plus years of storytelling has made people laugh, cry, and think! Recognizing I’ve also been trying to build better communities through storytelling,  I was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters. It was given by the faculty of the University of Missouri-St. Louis and The Board of Curators of the University of Missouri at the May Graduation Ceremony. Dr. Clark Hickman presented this degree to me. I am very grateful.  Please feel free to go to the additional pages on this web site.  You can like, offer a comment or make suggestions. I would love to hear from you.



  1. My dear, dear Gladys,
    How exciting! You know how much Mario and I love you. Thanks for the blessings you have given to so many of us storytellers.

  2. Hi!
    Finally! I’ve gotten to see your website! Although I have known about you for many years, I am happy that I have finally gotten to see your site! I hope that you will be able to tell the stories that I write!

    Much love,

  3. Dear, dear Sue,
    Thank you. I wish only the very best for you. Bless you and Mario. Gladys.

  4. Belinda,
    I am glad you found me through my web site. I hope that I will tell the stories that you write also.
    Thank you for viewing my web site. Gladys

  5. So glad to see you are still doing your storytelling and hope I get to see ya again soon

  6. When I think of you, my heart smiles. I’m so pleased you are still spreading inspiration and hope through your storytelling.

  7. Gladys I’m so happy you’re out & about again. I had lost you. My Uncle gave me a news clipping. Now I see you’r going to do an event in Joplin, MO. @ something to do with George Washington Carver. Looking forward to seeing you @ the event. What time will you be telling a story?
    I’m the nurse you met on a train & then attended my wedding 11 yrs ago.

  8. JUDY, I can’t believe it is you. I have thought about you and wondered where you were so often. Then I couldn’t remember what you looked like after I had my stroke. Thank you for contacting me. It was like a fairy tale. My long lost friend has been found. I still remember your Uncle coming to Frankford for the train ceremony. Is that the same uncle that gave you the newspaper clipping? I will beo happy to see you. My performance times are 11:00 A.M. and 2:00 P.M. Perhaps we’ll have time to talk after the last performance. I am so happy to hear from you. You made my day.

  9. Ms. Coggswell,
    I am writing this short note to inform you that I volunteer once a week at Wolfner Library in Jefferson City, doing audio book reviews. Today, I began reviewing your book, Stories from the Heart: Missouri’s African American Heritage. It is being narrated by Mr. Vaughn Whiting. I so wish that I could have the honor of reviewing your personal narration of your book for Wolfner. I do not know of any of the actual authors recording their own work here in Wolfner’s studio, but I believe it would be GLORIOUS if you were able to do so.
    Thank you so much for writing this wonderful book, ma’am.

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