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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Richmond’s Rich African-American Heritage

The African-American story in the Richmond Region is one of struggle, strength, courage and determination. From the slave markets in Shockoe Bottom to the battlefields of the Civil War, and from arts and entrepreneurship in the Jackson Ward neighborhood to Civil Rights protests downtown, African-Americans have made their mark in all corners of the Richmond Region. 
Visitors are invited to learn about the African-American experience in Central Virginia at a number of special Black History Month events, exhibits and tours throughout February.
For an authentic experience like no other, visitors can take part in a guided tour of the Richmond Slave Trail that chronicles Richmond’s role in the slave trade as the largest exporter of enslaved Africans on the East Coast in pre-Civil War America. 
Led by The Elegba Folklore Society, the walk takes participants past significant landmarks such as the Manchester Docks, a major port in the massive downriver slave trade; the site of the former slave markets of Richmond; the Richmond Slavery Reconciliation Statue commemorating the international triangular slave trade; Lumpkin's Jail; the Negro Burial Ground; and the First African Baptist Church, a center of African-American life in pre-Civil War Richmond. New interpretive signage along the trail offers a self-guided option. Call (804) 646-8911 to arrange a guided tour.
From February 6 to 24, Richmond Region’s Henrico County will host an extraordinary quilt exhibit “Each Quilt, A Story” by the Sisters of the Yam African-American Quilters Guild. Guests will enjoy the art and craftsmanship of beautiful quilts and learn about their history and culture with demonstrations and displays at Walkerton Tavern. Call (804) 501-5134 or (804) 261-6898.
The Virginia Historical Society (VHS) is presenting a number of events for Black History Month. Call (804) 358-4901 for details and registration. 
Visit VisitRichmondVA.com/Packages for information about special rates and packages.
For more information about top events in Virginia take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Virginia