CELEBRATE BLACK HISTORY MONTH WITH TIYA MILES’S AWARD-WINNING BOOK AND RELIVE HER SESSION AT CHARLESTON LITERARY FESTIVAL 2021
In 1850s Charleston, Rose, an enslaved woman, was facing an impossible situation. Her nine-year-old daughter Ashley was to be separated from her through forcible sale in South Carolina’s slave market. In a gesture of motherly love, she packed a small sack containing basic provisions for Ashley to carry with her.
Harvard historian Tiya Miles’s National Book Award-winning work, All That She Carried: The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, A Black Family Keepsakeevokes the story behind this sack and its legacy. This artifact is not just a story of forced separation, loss, and generational love; it also tells us about enslaved black women’s methods of survival.
In conversation with Kameelah Martin at the Charleston Literary Festival 2021, Tiya Miles says, “Ashley’s sack shows us that black women’s history is real, it is rich, and we can access it if only we listen to black women’s stories.”
This Black History Month, you can view this powerful conversation between Tiya Miles and Kameelah Martin, Dean of the Graduate School at the College of Charleston on YouTube, HERE.
GULLAH GEECHEE CULTURAL HERITAGE CORRIDOR NATIONAL HERITAGE AREA PLANS FOR NEW YEAR’S EVE WATCH NIGHT AND EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION CELEBRATIONS
For the fourth year, the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission will host an afternoon traditional Watch Night service titled “Freedom’s Eve: A Gullah Geechee Watch Night Emancipation Day Celebration” located at the historic Morris Brown AME Church, 13 Morris Street, Charleston, SC at 12:00 p.m. on December 31st, 2021. This event is a part of the Commission’s larger initiative to partner with Gullah Geechee communities in Charleston and across North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida to raise awareness about a celebration that is almost 160 years old: the New Years Eve & Watch Night service commemorating the date of January 1, 1863 when enslaved people in the Lowcountry, the Sea Islands and throughout the United States emerged from bondage as a result of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. On December 31, 1862, Gullah Geechee people gathered in praise houses and churches to await a new year. One that would mark the beginning of the end of slavery when the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1. This date was remembered as Freedoms Eve and many churches across the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor still use the New Year’s Eve Watch Night Service to remember that historic date.
To commemorate the historic tradition, this year’s hybrid event will showcase the rich, cultural heritage of the Gullah Geechee people with performances from acclaimed musicians Voices of Gullah Singers, Teli Shabu & The Magic of African Rhythm, Geechee Gullah Ring Shouters, storyteller Dontavius Williams, Melba Ayco and Northwestern Tap Connection, and liturgical dancer Diamin Hill. Hosted by Gullah preservationists Geechee Experience and Dr. Jessica Berry.
Sponsored by the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor National Heritage Area, in partnership with the International African American Museum, Emancipation Proclamation Association of Greater Charleston, and Magnolia Plantation & Gardens.
A family friendly event, the Black Food Truck Festival highlights the most delicious food trucks in combination with culture, music, and fun.
Anticipation and excitement for BFTF is high with attendees and vendors from all over the southeast set out to embark on a tremendous celebration like no other. We welcome all of you to celebrate with us, the first of many.
The College of Charleston’s Department of Political Science invites you to our annual convocation. Our guest speaker, Congressman James E. Clyburn, will be here to discuss the importance of voting rights.
For Immediate Release – Oct. 24, 2021 Contact – Michael Allen, 1-843-696-9558
Public Program on Coronavirus Impact on African Americans to be Held Sunday in Mount Pleasant
Mt. Pleasant — The South Carolina African American Heritage Commission will host a public event at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 31, at the Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Pavilion in Mount Pleasant. SCAAHC will showcase its “Black Carolinians Speak: Portraits of a Pandemic” initiative, an oral history project that captured more than 100 African American voices in South Carolina about the Coronavirus’ impact on their lives.
Highlighting the event will be a panel discussion featuring local authorities in healthcare and African American history, and Charleston residents whose voices were added to the project. The panel will be moderated by Michael Allen, one of the most preiminent historians in Charleston and the South Carolina Lowcountry, renowned for helping develop the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor and the Reconstruction Era National Historical Park. The distinguished panel guests will be:
• Dr. Thaddeus Bell, a Charleston physician in family practice, and founder and CEO of Closing the Gap in Healthcare, a non-profit that provides health education to African Americans and under-served communities to reduce health disparities; • Dr. Bernard Powers, professor emeritus of history at the College of Charleston and director of its Center for the Study of Slavery; • Dr. Brigid Sullivan, a local hospitalist physician at East Cooper Medical Center where she also serves as the chief of the Department of Medicine; • Mrs. Jackie Conyers, Charleston Housing Authority employee whose voice was added to the project.
Since May 2020, SCAAHC’s Portraits of a Pandemic project has captured narratives, interviews, poetry, paintings, photography and other expressions from South Carolinians, including many in Charleston. In July 2021, an exhibit of some of those expressions was installed at the South Carolina Archives and History Center in Columbia and was available for viewing for two months. A virtual version of that exhibit can be found here. The Commission continues to accept submissions at this link, and has expanded the program into 35 counties in North Carolina. A virtual exhibit of both states will be available in the Spring of 2022.
The Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Pavilion is at 99 Harry M. Hallman Jr. Blvd in Mount Pleasant. Seating is limited and CDC protocols for social distancing and mask wearing will be followed. For additional information on this event please contact Michael Allen at 1-843-696-9558.
“Black Carolinians Speak: Portraits of a Pandemic” was made possible by the generous support of the 1772 Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and South Carolina Humanities. Sunday’s program is being held in collaboration with the town of Mount Pleasant.
This event is hosted by the College of Charleston, the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture and the International African American Museum and the Anson Street African Burial Ground project team.
Students, friends and colleagues will have an opportunity to share their memories of these two passionate community activists and join a conversation about the ways that we can continue to honor them both, now as Ancestors.
2021 MOJA Arts Festival poster, featuring the artwork of Arianne King Comer.
Arianne King Comer, a BFA graduate of Howard University, has been an Artist in Residence in the state of South Carolina since 1995. She is a textile artist creating her work in paintings, wearable art, installation art, environmental art, home deco, as well as social justice.
In 1992, Arianne received the UN/USIS grant to study under the renowned Batik artist Nike Olyani Davis in Oshogbo Nigeria, where her passion for indigo manifested. She was given the Yoruba name of Osun Ronke.
She was owner of Ibile Indigo House on St Helena House ’98-04. In 2004, Arianne traveled to Istanbul, Turkey as a guest artist sponsored by her daughter, a designer/stylist, Nicole King Burroughs. Arianne created one of a kind jean for Mavi Jeans’s. In 2007, she had the opportunity to join The Charleston Rhizome Collective to conduct a textile workshop in batik and indigo at the World Social Forum in Nairobi, Kenya. 2006-7, Arianne was artist in Residence for North Charleston Cultural Affairs Office. In 1999, she was featured in the PBS documentary, “Messengers of the Spirit,” and in 2003 was featured in an Indigo Art segment on HGTV’s “Country Style,” which is still in syndication. She is an active member of Alternate ROOTS, Charleston Rhizome and a designer for Seeking Indigo. Her work is in several traveling exhibitions nationally as well as statewide.
Program Title: The Black Family-Promoting Health and Wellness
Date: April 10, 2021 via Zoom
Time: Membership Meeting at 1pm; Program at 1:50pm
Membership meeting to be followed by a panel discussion
The Covid-19 pandemic has refocused and reinforced attention on the existence of health disparities for Black Americans. Our panel of health care providers will explore the family based issues, strategies, and actions that impact health and wellness outcomes.
Dr. Thaddeus J. Bell is a practicing Family Practice Physician in Charleston, South Carolina. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Medicine and the Founder of Closing the Gap in Health Care, Inc. (CGHC), a non-profit organization created to decrease health disparities by providing health education for African Americans and other under-served populations. Closing the Gap in Health Care radio health tips as well as the website has received National Awards from the National Health Foundation as one the best programs of its kind in the Country in 2009, 2010 and 2011.
As board-certified GYN, Dr. Paula Orr brings more than 20 years of extensive experience in every aspect of women’s care. Specializing in Gynecology, Minimally Invasive Pelvic Surgery, Advance Gynecologic Laparoscopic Surgery, to alternative medicine and preventative medicine to treat many gynecological ailments, you will find the experience and care that you need. In addition, Dr. Orr and her staff work to treat the total woman, Body, Mind and Spirit. That’s why you will find a relaxing, motivational, and caring environment inside our practice.
Gwendolyn Harris, PhD, Charleston Branch Program Committee
Mark your calendars and spread the word. Dr. Hilary Green, Associate Professor of History at the University of Alabama, will be delivering the inaugural Center for the Study of Slavery in Charleston (CSSC) Scholarly Lecture next Thursday, March 25th at 6:00 pm EST via Zoom. Her talk is titled “Untangling Campus Histories of Slavery.”
Join us for an insightful conversation between two indigo-making artists about the ancestral craft of indigo-dying and its connection to the Lowcountry. Arianne King Comer is Artist-in-Residence at the Gibbs Museum and will be joined in conversation by fellow artist and master dyer, Ifé Franklin. Erica Veal, Project Archivist and Interpretation Specialist at Avery Research Center, will moderate the conversation.
The virtual event will take place on Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 11am EST. You will not need to register to attend the event; we will stream the event on the Avery Research Center’s Youtube page (https://tinyurl.com/IndigoSistahs).