Black History Month
It’s a pretty fun time to be an African American public historian.
With the Civil War Sesquicentennial wrapping up, and the commemorations of the Civil Rights Movement, these past four years have been one for the books. I’m finding out that more people are looking to hear more about the African-American experience and its place in American history and I am proud to be a part of it.
The road to get to this point wasn’t easy for me. I always felt like teachers and professors wanted me to focus on African American history just because I was black and I always wanted to explore other areas. When I started to really study the history of slavery in the United States, I wanted to see how it was being talked about at historic sites and museums. I wanted to see how other voices were explaining African American history to their audiences. It was important to see and hear other voices talking about what my history meant to this country and how it shaped who we are today. Fortunately, there are many voices telling the stories of those who have long been silenced. It’s also encouraging to know that while the interest for many may have started with learning about the roles of African Americans right before and during the Civil War, we are looking at life after emancipation and entering the 150th anniversary of Reconstruction. To explore the lives of African Americans after freedom and into Jim Crow allows us to look at the generations past enslavement leading up to the Civil Rights era and I feel, allows us to fill in some blanks that most of us didn’t learn about in school.
I am excited about where the interest in African American history is heading, and I am excited to share my experiences with the audience on the 21st. I’m also excited to hear what my fellow panelist will bring to the table, as we all have different reasons for studying and educating the masses about African American History. I’m also excited to see how we plan to move forward as we acknowledge another troubling point in history. If the past four years are any indication, I know we’ll tackle history head on, and continue learning more along the way.
– Nicole A. Moore
Founder of Interpreting Slave Life