Saturday, February 2, 2013

February is Black History Month

Entrance sign for the African Meeting House in Boston
Photo by Max A. van Balgooy

Take a trip to the Museum of Afro American History in Boston. The current exhibit The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Signs of Freedom runs now through the end of February, 2013. This new installation celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. King and other heroes of the Civil Rights Movement. Poignant scenes captured by Memphis photographer Ernest Withers include protest signs from the Civil Rights era and powerful broadsides from the Abolitionist Movement that recall incredible campaigns for human liberty. These visible signs are reminders of organized peaceful resistance, including sit-ins, freedom rides, strikes, boycotts, marches and other actions to acquire citizenship rights.

Signs of Freedom is a prelude to Freedom Rising, a yearlong exhibit and programming commemorating the Sesquicentennial of the Emancipation Proclamation and of the Massachusetts 54th Regiment, the first black soldiers from the north to serve in the Civil War. 
Dr. King asserted that two documents are essential to the nation, American identity and this democracy. The Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776, provided the foundation for freedom from Great Britain and national ideals. The Emancipation Proclamation, January 1, 1863, declared all persons enslaved in states in rebellion free.

The Black Heritage Trail® is a walking tour that explores the history of Boston's 19th century African American community.
Guided walking tours are offered by the National Park Service daily, Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend, and other times by special request. A self-guided walking tour map and guide is also available. For more information on the tour, please contact the museum.