1619 Exhibit in Vermont


Vermont Racial Justice Alliance Partners with Fletcher Free Library; Hosts “1619: Arrival of First Africans Exhibit”

Burlington, Vermont, November 29, 2019 – Today the Vermont Racial Justice Alliance announced an agreement reached with the Fletcher Free Library to host the “1619: Arrival of the First Africans Traveling Exhibit” from the Hampton History Museum (VA). Drawing on the latest research, this exhibit tells the story of the Africans’ home in Angola, how they came to be enslaved aboard a Spanish slave ship San Juan Bautista, the terrible 10,000 nautical mile voyage that brought them to Virginia, and their lives on the farms and plantations in the new colony.

The exhibit follows the Alliance sponsored First African Landing Vermont Commemoration and is designed to honor the spirit of the 400 Year African American History Commission – to recognize and highlight the resilience and contributions of African-Americans since 1619. “This is an awesome opportunity to teach ourselves and our children some of this important history that was omitted form our schools” Mark Hughes of The Alliance commented.  The exhibit will open at Fletcher Free Library on December 6th at 1:00 PM with a community reception and remain on display until a closing community commemorative ceremony on December 15th at 5:00 PM.   Details on how you can sponsor or support the event can be found at http://400yaahcvt.com/support. “Black folks’ existence on this continent predate English colonial occupation and this is just as good of place as any to start telling the story” said Hughes.

The Alliance’s legislative agenda includes a constitutional amendment clarifying the prohibition on slavery and indentured servitude and bills relating to establishing a Task Force to study and consider a State apology and proposal for reparations for the institution of slavery; data collection in the justice system and mandating police use of force data collection and standardizing the associated processes to include de-escalation and cross-cultural awareness training and policy. An antiracism bill is pending release.


Vermont Racial Justice Alliance
The Vermont Racial Justice Alliance, under the leadership of a people-of-color led Steering Committee advocates for the implementation of State and local policy and provides a variety of community forums, panels and lectures that enable folks to learn about systemic racism, contextualize lived experiences and provide important perspective and direction on community oriented and policy solutions.

Contact: Christine Longmore, 802.532.3030 or info@justiceoforallvt.org

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