Monday, February 15, 2010

Black History Vacation

February is the month that Americans and particularly African Americans focus on  Black History in this country.   History comes  alive when we can see the history up close and personal. It makes a big difference when compared to reading about it in a text book. Is great to incorporate  into a family vacation.   The good part is that this traveling history lesson can be embarked on all  year long, and need not be limited to the month of  February.
One website is good for exploring points of interest of travel in Black History is 
Discover Black Heritage-  A Travel Guide to Black History and Culture.     This site is chock full of Black History and cultural sites to visit all over the U.S.  I chose a few to highlight.
St. Louis Illinois
The  Old Courthouse in St Louis where Dred Scott’s request for freedom from slavery was tried and denied by t he Supreme Court in 1857. The court ruled that slaves were not citizens.
The courthouse is not far from the famed Gateway Arch. 
Tour the Katherine Dunham Museum in  East St. Louis, IL. This museum displays costumes, photographs, programs, letters, awards and mementos from Miss Dunham’s career as a dancer, choreographer, teacher, writer and dance company owner.
New York City
I am going to admit up front! I am  very biased when it comes to my hometown New York City. I think its the best.  New York is rich with Black History.  
Apollo Theatre -  Located on the famed 125th street,  This is the home of the Amateur Night at the  Apollo, and the launching pad of many careers.   
Its also the  gathering place in times of celebration such as the election of Pres. Barack Obama and in sadness such as the deaths of Michael Jackson and James Brown. 
 African Burial Ground – The remains of over 400 free and enslaved  men, women and children of African descent were found in 1991 during a Federal Construction Project. This proved that there indeed slaves in the North, and that Africans were a major presence in        colonial New York City It is located  at 290 Broadway between Duane Street and Reade Street. 
 One of my favorite places in New  York City is the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture – 
The Schomburg as it is affectionately called by the locals is part of the New York Pubic Library System, located in the heart of Harlem on 135th Street.  It is named after Arturo Schomburg a Puerto Rican Black historian who collected  Black history memorabilia which included, books, manuscripts, paintings, photographs and more. He was the curator from 1932 until his death in 1938.  There are always exhibits available to educate visitors as well as special presentations. 
I have  spent many days in this library doing research for papers starting from Middle School years to College years, and have very fond memories.
One other resource  I would like to share for Black History Travel is www.Blackatlas.com. Whether the traveler is looking for hair salon, or barber shop  that specializes in Black hair or an African American house of worship,  or a restuarant that specializes in southern, Caribbean or African cuisines, this is a site to always keep handy for reference. 
As I always say, Black History is American History and makes a great a family vacation rewarding.  Make your next vacation a Black History Vacation.
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4 comments:

MAH said...

Thank You so much Mrs. Gail Walker for sharing your blog with me. It is enlighting to be aware of all of these "GREAT BLACK HISTORY VACATION VENUES AND PLACES TO TRAVEL DURING OUR HISTORIAL MONTH AND EACH YEAR"...

I AM SO DELIGHTED TO BE YOUR FRIEND.

MUCH LOVE AND ABUNDANT BLESSING !!! MICHELLE

Tonal said...

It is nice time for vacation...
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MomAtHome said...

great blog gail.

GailTravel said...

Thanks MomAtHome for your compliment!