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Don’t Miss Voices of Our People!

Celebrate African American History Month at the Richland Library and join us for Voices of Our People, an annual celebration of African American life, culture, art, and history. This event is a showcase of community talent featuring artists, singers, poets, dancers, and much more. Voices of Our People is being held at 4 library locations this year so don’t miss out!

When and where is the event taking place?

Richland Library, SandhillsThursday, February 7th – 6:00pm to 8:30pm

Richland Library, North MainSaturday, February 9th – 2:30pm to 4:30pm

Richland Library, MainSaturday, February 16th – 3:00pm to 4:00pm

Richland Library, SoutheastMonday, February 18th – 6:30pm to 7:30pm

Take a look at what the library has on African American history.


Crystal J. Says: You Need a Schoolhouse : Booker T. Washington, Julius Rosenwald, and the Building of Schools for the Segregated South by Stephanie Deutsch
Amazon Says: Booker T. Washington, the founder of Tuskegee Institute, and Julius Rosenwald, the president of Sears, Roebuck, and Company, first met in 1911 at a Chicago luncheon. By charti more...
Amazon Says: Booker T. Washington, the founder of Tuskegee Institute, and Julius Rosenwald, the president of Sears, Roebuck, and Company, first met in 1911 at a Chicago luncheon. By charting the lives of these two men both before and after the meeting, Stephanie Deutsch offers a fascinating glimpse into the partnership that would bring thousands of modern schoolhouses to African American communities in the rural South in the era leading up to the civil rights movement. Trim and vital at just shy of fifty, Rosenwald was the extraordinarily rich chairman of one of the nation’s largest businesses, interested in using his fortune to do good not just in his own Jewish community but also to promote the well-being of African Americans.  Washington, though widely admired, had weathered severe crises both public and private in his fifty-six years. He had dined with President Theodore Roosevelt and drunk tea with Queen Victoria, but he had also been assaulted on a street in New York City. He had suffered personal heartbreak, years of overwork, and the discouraging knowledge that, despite his optimism and considerable success, conditions for African Americans were not improving as he had assumed they would. From within his own community, Washington faced the bitter charge of accommodationism that haunts his legacy to this day. Despite their differences, the two men would work together well and their collaboration would lead to the building of five thousand schoolhouses. By the time segregation ended, the “Rosenwald Schools” that sprang from this unlikely partnership were educating one third of the South’s African American children. These schoolhouses represent a significant step in the ongoing endeavor to bring high quality education to every child in the United States—an ideal that remains to be realized even today. less...
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Crystal J. Says: In Search of the Promised Land : a Slave Family in the Old South by John Hope Franklin and Loren Schweninger
Amazon Says: The matriarch of a remarkable African American family, Sally Thomas went from being a slave on a tobacco plantation, to a "virtually free" slave who ran her own business and p more...
Amazon Says: The matriarch of a remarkable African American family, Sally Thomas went from being a slave on a tobacco plantation, to a "virtually free" slave who ran her own business and purchased one of her sons out of bondage. In Search of the Promised Land offers a vivid portrait of the extended Thomas-Rapier family and of the life of slaves before the Civil War. Based on family letters as well as an autobiography by one of Thomas' sons, this remarkable piece of detective work follows a singular group as they walk the boundary between slave and free, traveling across the country in search of a "promised land" where African Americans would be treated with respect. Their record of these journeys provides a vivid picture of antebellum America, stretching from New Orleans to St. Louis, from the Overland Trail to the California Gold Rush, and from Civil War battles to steamboat adventures. John Hope Franklin and Loren Schweninger weave a compelling narrative that illuminates the larger themes of slavery and freedom. To a remarkable degree, this small family experienced the full gamut of slavery, witnessing everything from the breakup of slave families, brutal punishment, and runaways, to miscegenation, insurrection panics, and slave patrols. They also illuminate the hidden lives of " virtually free" slaves, who maintained close relationships with whites, maneuvered within the system, and gained a large measure of autonomy. The Thomas-Rapiers were keen observers of the human condition. Through the eyes of this exceptional family and the indomitable black woman who held them together, we witness aspects of human bondage otherwise hidden from view. less...
Amazon

Crystal J. Says: Say it Loud : Great Speeches on Civil Rights and African American Identity, Edited by Catherine Ellis and Stephen Drury Smith
Amazon Says: Say It Loud adds new depth to the oral and audio history of the modern struggle for racial equality and civil rights—focusing directly on the pivotal questions black America more...
Amazon Says: Say It Loud adds new depth to the oral and audio history of the modern struggle for racial equality and civil rights—focusing directly on the pivotal questions black America grappled with during the past four decades of resistance. With recordings unearthed from libraries and sound archives, and made widely available here for the first time, Say It Loud includes powerful speeches by Malcolm X, Angela Davis, Martin Luther King Jr., James Cone, Toni Morrison, Colin Powell, and many others. Bringing the rich immediacy of the spoken word to a vital historical and intellectual tradition, Say It Loud illuminates the diversity of ideas and arguments pulsing through the black freedom movement. less...
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Crystal J. Says: Life Upon these Shores : Looking at African American History, 1513-2008 by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Amazon Says: Henry Louis Gates, Jr., gives us a sumptuously illustrated landmark book tracing African American history from the arrival of the conquistadors to the election of Barack Obama more...
Amazon Says: Henry Louis Gates, Jr., gives us a sumptuously illustrated landmark book tracing African American history from the arrival of the conquistadors to the election of Barack Obama. Informed by the latest, sometimes provocative scholarship and including more than seven hundred images—ancient maps, fine art, documents, photographs, cartoons, posters—Life Upon These Shores focuses on defining events, debates, and controversies, as well as the signal achievements of people famous and obscure. Gates takes us from the sixteenth century through the ordeal of slavery, from the Civil War and Reconstruction through the Jim Crow era and the Great Migration; from the civil rights and black nationalist movements through the age of hip-hop to the Joshua generation. By documenting and illuminating the sheer diversity of African American involvement in American history, society, politics, and culture, Gates bracingly disabuses us of the presumption of a single “black experience.” Life Upon These Shores is a book of major importance, a breathtaking tour de force of the historical imagination. less...
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Crystal J. Says: The Negro Leagues: The Story of Black Baseball by Jacob MargoliesAmazon
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