Freedman’s Bank 150th Anniversary Celebration



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On March 3, 2015, Operation HOPE Forums and the Afro-American History Society of the National Archives (AAHS) will recognize the 150th anniversary of the Freedman’s Bank. Established on March 3, 1865, by President Abraham Lincoln, the Bank was a landmark institution that had over $57 million in deposits and 70,000 depositors. The Bank’s records remain the single largest repository of lineage-linked African-American genealogy, containing upwards of 480,000 names.

Members of AAHS will present Freedman’s Bank records at the National Archives, and there will be a moderated discussion with Operation HOPE Founder John Hope Bryant, Ambassador Andrew Young, ESSENCE Magazine Editor-In-Chief Vanessa DeLuca, and other dignitaries on the historical significance of the Bank and how its unfinished journey still resonates today in issues of poverty, income inequality, and race relations. A reception will follow.

The event is free and open to the public, register online.

Chocolate City: A History of Race and Democracy in the Nation’s Capital



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In their book, Chocolate City, professors Chris Myers Asch and George Derek Musgrove tell the tumultuous, four-century story of race and democracy in our nation’s capital. Washington has often served as a national battleground for contentious issues, including slavery, segregation, civil rights, and the drug war. But, the city is also rich in history of local activism as the citizens struggle to make their voices heard in an undemocratic city where residents lack full political rights. A book signing follows the program.

Facing Slavery’s Legacy at Georgetown University



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Adam Rothman, professor of history at Georgetown, discusses the university’s roots in the slave economy of early America and their implications for today. He describes university efforts to research its history and reach out to descendants of the Maryland Jesuit slave community. Rothman is part of the university’s Working Group on Slavery, Memory and Reconciliation. Presented in partnership with the Historical Society of Washington, D.C., as the Letitia Woods Brown Memorial Lecture to open the 43rd Annual Conference on D.C. History.