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tv   African American Voting Rights  CSPAN  November 1, 2020 6:35pm-8:01pm EST

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>> next on the civil war, nicole myers turner, author of soul liberty, the evolution of black religious politics and post-emancipation in virginia on her book, coeditors of the journal of the civil war era hosted this event and provided the video. minutes, gettysburg national millitary park's talks about the evolving interpretation of little round top during the battle of gettysburg. eastern, on lectures in history, mary erin hoeffel of belmont university teach a class on the history of presidential campaign advertising from the print and cartoon ads of the 19th century
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to the content of the present-day. to -- wanted to start out by sharing with you all the national parks association and the association for the study of aftermarket -- african-american life and history begin or than years ago. it was then that irena webster and barbara spencer done joined with the women who would become and had the vision to join forces to support and enhance the work of the national park service. sadly, she passed away earlier this year. i wanted to take a moment at the start of this conversation about the preservation of the history of the struggle to achieve black voting rights to remember my boss, my friend and a true pioneer in the long and ongoing process of the conservation and
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preservation organizations more just, equitable, diverse and inclusive. today, folks are going to be aware the history of the struggle for voting rights is wide-ranging, multifaceted and current. it is still going on. what we want to do with this panel of experts and people who are my friends, folks i admire, is to get their insights on this issue but may be in more specific and direct ways. we have one person who actually lived through the struggle for voting rights. we will hear from josephine about that. her family's experiences, her experiences and what she is doing now to protect and preserve that history. we have two other friends, people i admire very much who are experts and who have long storied careers in helping to
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protect and preserve the african-american experience including the struggle for voting rights. without any more ado, we are going to get going. joe, we will turn it over to you. we will do individual presentations and move into a question and answer session and we will begin to take questions from the audience. since -- thank you all for being here. we will go to you now. thank you. >> good afternoon. in our discussion today, i will make three declarations regarding preserving the history of the voting rights struggle. number one, when the civil war ended in 1855, two years later in 1857, there were 4000 black men registered voters. in 1965 though, out of 5000 african-americans of voting age,
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there was not a single registered voter. -- established an independent political party. 1970, 2500 african-americans participated in the democratic primary. the history of the voting rights struggle was preserved. county is up highway 80, also known as the national historic trail. one cannot get through montgomery from selma or some of from montgomery without traveling in the county. 1865, county legislators recorded a proposed vote to enfranchise black men, believing they could control their vote.
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in march 1867 when congress extended the franchise to black men through the reconstruction theyit became clear intended to vote as they please. despite the use of scare test takes, they found to keep african-americans from the ballot box. of 1867, black men had been named to the voting role. the black community was not prepared. moved and in 1867, he organized the first baptist church for african-americans. he received funds from the freedmen's bureau and operated a school in that building. 1872, he himself
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served as a county representative in the alabama house of representatives. [indiscernible] schools as a separate building. the8 -- the 1870 church and school are on the national register and still stand today. african-americans -- lincoln's party because that is the party that delivered them from slavery. controlmocrats seized of the party in 1870 and took pack the statehouse. democrats gerrymandered the
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congressional district and expelled the back legislature. the republican party crashed. 1901, [indiscernible] provisions which required voters to pay one dollar 50 as a poll test.ass a literacy had morethe county than 500 registered voters. six years later, the county had only 67. the county became known as bloody because of the high rate of violence against blacks to maintain segregation. the district attorney was told if he valued his life, he better
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stay away from the county. , manage childman was a target. in 1935, purchased a large plantation and divided into small farms. year, three black men [no audio] fact, in 1947, my father changed his economics dennis -- economic status. he was lynched for his achievement. seven children were left fatherless as a result. my oldest brother was 15. i was five.
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our father began with a mule and a wagon. he acquired a plantation, a star on highway 80 -- a store on highway 80. he employed about 40 people. he had a tractor-trailer truck. shot six times with a pistol and once in the back with a shotgun. the county made an effort to cover up the process. i wrote a book detailing about the penalty.ed it my father was lynched. a family established foundation in my father's memory to keep his legacy of being an entrepreneur going. to 1960 --ward
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moving forward to 1960. [indiscernible] cd5, john lewis -- 1965, john lewis led the infamous march. the march finally reached montgomery on march 21. stuckey carmichael -- stogie -- wasael was joan joined by others in april. he set up an independent black political party better known as the black panther party. they began to register black voters. evicted 75owners families. to keep eve a tease leaving the county, organizers arrested [indiscernible]
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there is nothing on the landscape to show they were there. thank you very much. presentation and great personal history. go to youare going to next. take it away. ajena: i want to say thank you for sharing your story. it is those kinds of stories that really make this relevant and real for us. bringl these stories forward the cultural outreach that is so necessary for us to have and connect with.
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that is part of the mission of the national parks service, to the natural protect and historical but also the places likeues of this. that is what was the underpinning for the commemoration that we had and for the 19th amendment this year to commemorate the 100th grantedary that suffrage for women through the constitution. in our commemoration wanted to keep in mind two things. that the national park service must communicate to all, that not all women achieved the right
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to vote with the passage of the 19th amendment. and second, that this trouble was very much defined by class and race and religion should those are -- and religion. those are the things we wanted to make sure we put forward in any commemorative event we did. and so, we kept this first point in mind that not all were to get the right to vote because of the passage of the 19th amendment because history is not pretty. it is not clear cut. , we mustry to tell it tell the stories in all their complexity. i want everyone to think for a moment. in your school days when you were learning about the women's suffrage movement, think of some of the images that were used to tell the story. you may recall some images of a was up with katie stanton and
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susan b. anthony -- images of elizabeth cady stanton and susan b anthony. the silent sentinels that were standing out in front of the white house in lincoln park. significant even today in protest. but they were there, petitioning against woodrow wilson. or the women who were jailed during these movements. when you think of those images, do you see black women present in those images? not often than not, you do because those images are reflective of how the story has been told, who was in charge of those stories. were as harden who as anyone else working towards suffrage, who were always there, representede to be
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in a full way. they were often marginalized and their stories were marginalized. now this body knows very well after the conference we went through in the last month, the ofries of ida b wells and course, my favorite, maggio walker -- maggie a walker. use her as an example to open up these stories that we were telling in the commemoration this year. the intersection of race and gender is very critical to talk about and we are talking about suffrage -- to talk about when we are talking about severed. the movement for suffrage -- talking about suffrage. the second point we came about and wanted to make sure we got across was the struggle that theinued for decades after
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amendment was passed, it was race and class and religion as i mentioned. vote as you mentioned, josephine, was restricted from black women and particularly for black men as well with poll taxes and literacy tests and grandfather clauses. just a question of whether you were a citizen or not. these were part of the stories the park service wanted to make sure we told in our commemoration this year. we also knew that we had to use a variety of means for getting those stories acros. you can't -- getting those stories across. forl go to
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the history. you will be pleasantly surprised by the variety of people represented on that page. -- we startedm planning as an agency two years before the event itself. when coronavirus comes in, we have to pivot, pivot, pivot. i think that made our programming even more relevant because we were going to a lot of more virtual platforms. the things we were doing that might have just reached a group of people at these communities were put on virtual platforms and had a wider reach. you can still pull them up and see the events today. i'm thinking particularly the one that was done by women's rights. they had an equality day and invited descendents of those including suffragists
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descendents of elizabeth cady .tanton and frederick douglass that wepes of programs were able to experiment with and still have something very effective today. finally, we also made a point to outte partnerships, reach to other organizations. we realized we are not completely all alone the only expert, the last word, the final check of what was happening. we need to work with other groups, other museums, other organizations to bring out these stories we wanted to make sure were told. and that also involved making sure it was an intergenerational approach. tapping in to the energy of the young professionals who had new
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ideas and fresh ways of reaching a larger audience. at the same time, reaching back to get those oral histories and presentations brought in to make the connections so we are reaching a wide group of people. with this year's commemoration, noth does not end -- will end -- the struggle continues and the story must continue. out the stories that were always there. lens on theferent stories that had been told. to bring a better focus to what happened before. we can see what happened in the past a little better so that we can see better going
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forward. >> thank you for that. it is a great segue. it is almost like you planned it. share with us your thoughts. >> thank you so much. ajena, thank you so much for everything you just said. meeting,ad our preview i made sure to tell both of you i was very thankful to be on this panel with you. alan was just like, let me -- thatut and make this was absolutely beautiful. to hear you guys speak today, ajena, i have heard you several times. i have been out of park service for a year and a half and all of a sudden i cannot even say what it is. just coming from the park
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service, i heard you speak about the maggie walker site. it is always so exhilarating. thank you so much for sharing your family's history. professionalseum and also a historian, the thing that always tabs at my syllable is being able to -- at my soul is being able to hear oral histories but also being able to hear it from the family. i feel that is something that is very unique to what we have in our field as african-americans. to reach do make sure out to the community to get those stories. thank you. i am overwhelmed. thank you both and thank you all. thank you for having me here today at a conference.
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i feel like i am back home. thank you for having us. thank you for having me. i am the executive director of the association of african-american museums. i have been here as executive director as of this month a year and a half. that is why i am stumbling because i am like, park service. years to be there for 11 as a grants management then also the african-american civil rights branch. i am sure a lot of you out there , outside of this box i am in have in some way, shape or form have had some connections with me. just having those conversations position,ing in this i am always reaching back out to make sure all of my folks are doing well.
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the association of african-american museums has been around for 42 years now and thate the organization really preserves, protects and andrprets african african-american history and culture not just in the united states but also internationally. the thing i always love to say about members is when we are it legally anddo respectfully. the reason i say legally is nobody has knocked on any of our doors and said, you stole that from us. can you make sure you give it back? everything is labeled there. is always a document being signed. like i said earlier, we really just make sure we are in the community. aremajority of our museums formed in the community and are
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of the community. collecting doing our , when we are collecting oral histories, all of that is in the community from which we serve. the other thing that is really important about that is sometimes you can have a museum that is in the community. we do not have those problems. they see themselves in our exams. as a matter of fact -- our museums. something i can share with you as an example is in memphis, afterwas a protest right george floyd was murdered. started at city hall and ended at the national civil rights museum. speaks volumes because those protesters should have it could have chosen anywhere -- protesters could
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have chosen anywhere but they decided to end at the national civil-rights museum. that is happening all over the country. protesterson, d.c., were congregating at the national museum of african-american history and culture. going to the smithsonian anacostia museum -- anacostia community is imputed that is look and to me, it is heartwarming ,hat those out doing the work our liberties and we well have a quality, that are still reaching for after all of these years, to come to our them as beacons
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of hope. like a ginase to -- we makework sure to work through partnerships. no one should work alone. merrier, the more you can get done, just like this panel. i'm sure you would love to hear mym me for an hour, but family gets tired of my voice after little bit, so it's ok. i say that to say partnerships are important. and as wellservice lh.asa we partner with fort monroe authority and the charles young , it is a site but once
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they come in they turn into a museum. office, weton dc have partnered with. this is making sure the park service, as they need help figuring out how to do things and how to expand their reach, we make sure we are doing that correctly with our museum. ena knows that very well, i tapped her on the shoulder and say, i have this idea for maggie walker. are you tired of my ideas? i'm thankful for her because we have to do the work together. as i think about the 19th amendment and how our museums interpret and protect that really havedo not
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the problem preserving the history of the untold. us is youimportant to will always see the suffrage movement of african-american women in our museum. it is just a matter of making sure people understand it and are coming to the museum to get that information. work to doe also , there areseum exchanges and people are doing a lot of personal things now so we , the entirepivot conference in august was virtual and museums are doing programming virtually. this is the time for us to sure we areto make doing right by our ancestors.
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i think it is very telling that our panel is right after the presidential election. all of thealk about things that could have happened, should have happened, i'm not going to lead that charge, i will let alan do it. are the folks who could be the change we want to see, and i am thankful for that. alan: thank you all for your introductions. we want to get into some questions and remind folks if you are listening and you have questions, you can submit those in the chat function and we will get to them as we are able. jo, i wanted to go back to you. one of the things i have learned and am becoming more familiar
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with racial violence in the country is often times, lynching and racial violence are thought to be random. someone was in the wrong place at the wrong time and something was done to that person. your father's work murder -- what your father's murder reminds us all of is that in most instances, violence frequented among african-americans was not random. it was targeted against those who were the most successful because people in white communities did not like symbols of success like your father. how does that play into the elmore, your father, wrote, thek you penalty for success: my father
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was lynched in alabama? josephine: first we have to be aware these things are still happening. occurred,ynchings many tried to hide their faces so people would not know where they were. many times they were being led by sheriffs and other officials. so it appears the same kind of thing is going on now and i do not want people to think this is something that just happened in the past. it is still going on. we have the funeral service for john lewis several weeks ago and we lost a great man. shared by comments former president bill clinton was an off-the-cuff remark about
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stokely carmichael and the student nonviolent committee under his leadership may be going in the wrong direction. you had mentioned stokely in the work being done in alabama. it was a different kind of organizing you got from other civil rights organizers who were working at the time. something different from the lawn filing -- the nonviolent philosophy. josephine: the kind of throughnce being worked could not and would not have worked in lowndes county. , once you strike us, we are going to strike back. , he said he did not
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want people to think he was thinking of black power as white power, he was talking about the masses being able to get use their numbers as strength. that is what he thought of as black power. spoke, you will see a lady there sitting with a shotgun. people were intense and at night, drivers plywood sheet to to --nts until they found drivers would drive by and shoot into the tents until they fought back.
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alan: lowndes county played a particular role in the voting rights struggle because you have selma to the west and montgomery to the east. lowndes county became the place where if you were a smith organizer and you did not want to be out on the road after dark, so lowndes county became a safe haven where people could stay overnight and seek shelter in the community. could you talk about that, the role lowndes county played in the voting rights struggle? josephine: yes. several families owned their own homes and could afford to ofticipate without a lot revocations. they lost businesses but because they owned their own home, they could be out in the movement more. mr. jackson owned property and young men in
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montgomery and selma were going to get killed. so we had a house and he let the smith workers live in the house commit it is called the freedom house now. that is one of the ways the lowndes county people kept people safe. screene just saw on the the cover of the book and the sandwich board the organizer is wearing with the picture of the black panther. move on over or we will move on over you. it's a little bit of a different sentiment then we should overcome -- we shall overcome. this portion of history is less well-known than other elements but the interesting story is these are the original black
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panthers because after the development of the freedom organization and selection of the symbol of the black panther, they got a call from some young california asking if they could adopt that symbol for their use for the black panther party. at some point we will have a conversation about that. a, we are talking about the 19th amendment, women's suffrage , and i wanted to get your thoughts on the march that took place in washington on pennsylvania avenue in march of 1913. a march to press for the ratification of the right for women to vote, but it was segregated. what role did african-american women play where what role where
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they forced to play in that event? ena: alice paul organized the march. she had witnessed the suffrage movement in england, which was more radical than here in the united states. she was geared up to make sure women would come from all over the country and gather in washington dc for the march. and shes a delegation came along and was prepared to march with them but washington is in the southern part of the country so the organizers to the blackd said women who were going to be part including delta sigma
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, they would not be able to march alongside. they would have to march in the back. it was a segregated parade so they would not offend the people in washington dc who could not fathom having an interracial march because jim crow was still in force. did not deal with that. not going to march toward the back. she did not join the march when the dingo -- when the delegation of her state moved out at first but when they came back she slipped in and marched along with them. terrell took another route of compliance.
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they did march in the back of the parade, but what that story shows to us, i hope, is that there are individuals in different approaches to segregation. -- different approaches to try to reach the same goal. ,ometimes it will work depending on who you are and what the situation is. we have to take time to look at how all of those things come together, not condemn one way or .nother way you have to take in the full context to understand what was happening. so these stories will help us
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see when we are in our own situation today, it is all right to take different approaches, depending on what was happening at the time. alan: thank you for that. i wanted to follow up with another question. can you talk about who maggie walker was? she was one of the first african-american women to register to vote after the 19th amendment was ratified. tell us a little bit about who is there anything in her personal papers, anything she wrote or said that gives us insight into how she felt? clearly she thought it was important, but what was in her heart? ena: she was born in 1864 in
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richmond, virginia and grew up during the time when reconstruction was ending. was passedendment when she was a little girl. -- knew with the rates were rights were. the right to vote were being stripped away from black men during jim crow and african-american women like her had limited opportunity. when she got the opportunity to be the leader of an organization called the independent order of sainthood, she looked at the organization as a way to expand rights and opportunities for .ommunity she was a powerful community leader and civil rights activist
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and became nationally known for starting a bank in 1903. she used the newspapers to speak rights and against jim crow segregation and injustice. she was also a member of national association for colored to speak out against lynching and to speak out for civil rights for women. they were involved again trying to make sure the right to vote was applied universally. rights grantede to black men in the 15th amendment stripped away, maggie and the women of the nac
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had to use their platform the best they could to get rights back. so she starts out and by 1920, she is very much advocating for women's suffrage. as soon as she could after the passage of the 19th and amendment, she went right down to city hall and registered to vote. who liftedo a woman herself up to be quite privileged. and leader,esident she did not forget those who had less, those who did not have what she had and she used her andtion to help educate
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enroll black women to register to vote. that was her challenge. we are in the south, richmond, virginia. wasegistration for women segregated and you had more registrars working to register white women than you did for black women. ms. walker went out there and said, put me in. i will do it. they didn't let her do it, but over the course of three days, in spite of all the obstacles , they werecing them able to get 2500 women registered to vote. they would continue as a community to educate, get people prepared for the literacy test, to help them pay the poll tax. continue until she
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passed away in 1934, right at the beginning of the modern civil rights movement, showing there is a reason to work, even if you do not get to see the benefits of it for yourself, it is important to lay the groundwork for the next generation to keep building on alan: thank you. i have a question. the national voting rights museum and institute in selma, alabama, has a slogan on their website that read, hands that pick cotton can pick our president's. that is a powerful slogan. can you talk about how museums in your universe are tackling the issue of black voting rights ?
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vedet: sure thing. thank you for the shout out for the sorority. we are beaming. thank you for the question. i can definitely answer that. are conveningeums to start a revolution. revolution, but it is a revolution of voting rights and making sure people are registered to vote, taking sure in the community they are getting out to make sure people of whatnd the gravity it is to not vote. i am learning a lot of our
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museums are trying to address a generation of people who do not understand how important it is to vote because they do not see the person they want on the are like, no one is moving me, i will not vote. i will not call their names because they will blow up my , and one phone is connected to every device in my we started social distancing, but one of my members told me they are so woke, they are asleep. that is basically what everyone ,s combating, trying to wake up , it is spike lee's movie serious. making sure the communities in
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what they serve understand will happen if we did not vote. what it looks like when we don't vote. the trends of what has happened in the past, of why it is important for black people to get out and vote, people have lost their lives to vote. me ising that sticks with thinking about how long heardn-americans, i stories growing up about how my great-grandparents had to walk five country miles to get to a polling place, and it is real. serious. there are people who died. blood, sweat, tears went into
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making sure we could vote and we cannot just sit back. this is not a time for us to be sit back and allow things to happen to us. we have to be the change we want to see and i feel like we have who have done the work and are still here and can tell us what it was like trying to make sure people could vote. has the whole story about her dad and making sure in lowndes county people can vote. this is happening all over the country. it's not just lowndes county. it does not matter where you are. i think it's funny that people think these same problems are not happening in the north. i am from new jersey. i can tell you, they were happening.
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in summary, our museums are in the communities even when it is not something we are supposed to do because of covid. we are doing it safely, but we have to be out to let people know it is important and that this is not a time to be quiet. we have to act. allen: to follow up, what some of the best examples you have from the museums in your association about the way they are interpreting the fighting right story -- voting rights story? we have world history, video interpretation, things like that. what are some of the more innovative practices you are seeing coming out of museums talking about protecting and preserving and interpreting the history?
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vedet: oral history and exhibits. during covid, everything has to be virtual. we have a bunch of museums putting artifacts on their website, having robots in their show certain parts of exhibits,t, reading they are doing it for people who want to visit museums while temporarily closed. a lot of the museums are slowly doing so responsibly based on nine covid guidelines -- based on covid guidelines. i think what was done at the
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maggie walker site, using a google robot, that is something our museums are implementing as well. a lot of people will start calling you, ajena, about how you got that robot. i used it a lot when i was in park service. it spoke to me. and now the museum sees we need to be more nimble and have to think of creative ways to get to people. a lot of folks are making sure their facebook pages are more pronounced, social media presence is more pronounced than in the past. that is something else happening as well. for public programming, you can go to the museum's website and you will see there is a program that responds with the voters rights for now and will
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toiously ramp up next month vote aggressively. josephine: with the google :treet views we used -- ajena with the google street views we used, that was a couple months back. google approached us to do the chores but it was on the website. people would go to it and then go on their own. with having to be innovative, we started using matt with ranger guided tours -- started using that with ranger guided tours showing we could have a ranger on a resume call to take people to the site. technology has advanced further.
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when you look into the mirrors that maggie walker's house, sometimes you can see the machine reflected in the mirror. it was so big, we could not take it up to do the upper floors. by now technology is such you can take a cell phone and record the tours. that's another option. it is a way to get the stories told beyond the walls in the museum >> when i was speaking to a few of my museums when covid first hit, we were trying to figure out, what can we do quickly? a lot of museums were temporarily closing and i have
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to say that because i was saying, our museums are closed and people were like, no! yes,egal reasons, our folksy closed, were picking up cell phones, taking pictures of a piece of the collection and just pushing it out on social media. you are correct that the machine is huge. again, just being nimble. stairs,t get it up the it can't go to the second-floor, it is not designed for that. i don't think rosie robot was designed for that. 2020, as crazy as 20/20 is, we were able to -- 2020 is, we were able to shift.
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if this was 1990 or even the 2000's, we would not be in the situation we are in now. for all the craziness that 2020 is, i am thankful that we have the technology that we have so we can continue to keep moving and keep making sure that we are in their communities in which we serve. alan: i'm going to go to some questions from our viewers and i'm going to start with one from betty pickett. nelly quandary wrote a letter to alice paul saying that college women should be allowed to walk with white college women in the parade. paul what told alice she was doing about it, like summer just's were allowed to walk with white suffragists. wereack suffragists allowed to walk with white
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separatists. in the chat -- i am learning as well, because when you go to some of the documentaries that are out now, the way that the story is told is it was completely segregated of when you see the pictures the march, it has howard university students marching in a group in the back of the parade. so i would love to look further to see about how they were itowed -- or that part of from another perspective. these are the things we need to have come out to hear the different angles or views so that we can have the fullest picture. particular for ida b. wells, she waited along
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the side for the illinois delegation to walk past and she joined them. she was welcomed by her white colleagues. alice paul was dealing with -- i think what sheath -- what she felt would be a poor response from southern elected officials in congress who had the responsibility for ratifying the women's suffrage bill amendment and i think that was uppermost in her mind and how she responded to the presence of african-american women in that march. asking, is theis century-old rgb universal flag a aaamnent fixture in all museums and if not, why not? have black flag vendors to maintain your flag needs over time? i can answer that quickly
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from my end. i would need to ask our members they would -- members. there is a permanent collection and a temporary collection. how it need to ask them is being preserved and i can get that back to you. i do not have the answer right now because each collection is specific to our members. me, with the national sites, we just have our united states flag in the state flags that we are part of. as far as i know, those are the restrictions that we have. alan: thank you for that. o, want to go back to you. we are both an integral part of this coalition for people
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seeking the alabama black national heritage area and wanted to find out why you are supporting that cause and how you think it might protect and preserve the history of the voting rights struggle. josephine: thank you for asking that. counties and we know that we need more funds because the counties are the poorest counties in the nation. i am interested because as i mentioned, all the work that was , there is nothing to show for it. people talk about the cell not march and skip over what happened in alabama. with all of the work that we did , how toth the workshops run for political offices, we need something to recognize them
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. hopeful that they will recognize the work that was done and also recognize the schools we built in 1883. that school is still standing. register.he national most people have not heard of it. most people have not heard of the reconstruction legislator. we will focus attention on an area that has done a lot of work but has not been recognized. you, forle we have those of the audience members who have not been to lowndes county, can you give us a description of which hometown your home county looks like?
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what if you look like in the day and what it looks like now. josephine: we have brick homes rather than shacks. the people have been kept on plantations and most of them did not have their own property. housesfrom mostly shack to houses now that are brick homes. there are still people living in mobile homes with not running water in some places. ,e have environmental issues sewage problems and all of that. lowndes county is still one of the poorest counties in the nation. more of proofen that we need to get back on the
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voting rights track, make sure we have the representation necessary. ajena, want to come to you. we had a conversation about the women's suffrage, the ratification of the 19th amendment, and we have had the statement from our colleague, betty pickett, rounding out that story. do you think there has been enough of a conversation nationally about the women's suffrage movement and the racial component of that, the racism in , the opportunity for alliances across races, but the incidence that may be kept black women in a segregated position for a variety of reasons? having had enough of a conversation about that? so, what are the next step?
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if not, how do we continue to highlight that story? there i do not feel that has been enough of a conversation, though we are making great strides in trying to bring it forward. mentioned, there have been several documentaries that have ofn premiered in recognition the centennial. one that was put out by station, andlic tv what was pleasing to me is they made an effort to integrate the story of what was happening with black women and at the same time, they were talking about what is happening with the white women in the majority suffrage organizations. we are seeing progress in how the story is being woven
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together and it is bringing women of other ethnic backgrounds, racial backgrounds into the stories. it is not done, it is not finished. comment there, there -- moreerent ways things to look at, more documents to come out. i am familiar with that letter that was referred to that put another twist on what that picture showed. to bringo have people forward these stories so that we can make it a richer presentation, so we can get the conversation going. what i mentioned about the women's rights program, that is cast ono be rebroad
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october 24 through the public station in new york. very interesting conversation about the legacy. important, for us to look at those who are descendents, and we essentially are all descendents and benefited from what these things were. we still need to have the conversation. got a referenced the president of the alpha kappa alpha sorority was written on february 17, 1913 and the right way -- no way to right wrongs is turn the light of truth upon them. -- the way to right wrongs is to turn the light of truth upon them. put that in your notebook.
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you, i seeng back to similarities between what you are doing now with the association of african american museums and the work that dr. 1915, woods did in getting out the journal of negro history and establishing black history month. what are your priorities for using the museum community to highlight african-american history, african-american culture, the african-american experience? tie that to voting rights but anything else you are working on at this point to make people more aware. you have a moment right now. vedet: thank you. for us, it is really about education. the doctor, it is about educating folks, making
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sure that they know their stories. we, asople, as much as scholars, would love to say, did you redo this book, that book, most people want to do the tangible things such as go to a museum. i did not know until i went to z museum and sometimes i am astonished but other times i am like, that is what we are here for, we are here to educate. i went to virginia state university in petersburg, virginia, which is not far from site, but i never went to the maggie walker site until i was in grad school at howard. i did not know that they existed. it is about making sure that that are educated and know
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our sites and museums are places have aledge and we breadth as well. when you walk through, usually you will see that wall text and byte under their are a bunch of who put that wall text together. aids ofe also reading where the information came from. it was something that was researched and folks put in a great deal of work to do it. information, i'm sure one of my museums has if not the book, they are definitely commemorating that story, whether it is the oral not, you- if they are wind i need to have a
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conversation afterwards to make sure that this is done correctly. as far as voting rights are concerned and what we are doing there, we make it a point -- when you go to our museums, you whatsee artifacts about has happened throughout history for voting, what has happened in these communities, something that is really simple, what is happening right now? of something that we would call paraphernalia out there, signs going up of who , kamalare supporting harris is the first -- i wouldrican vp not be surprised and i'm not going to say that it is a surprise, i know it might museum folks are saying, i need that
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because i'm going to need that lately,hat -- again, nobody is stealing it off people's lawns, they are not going around at the end of the night when everyone is asleep grabbing these signs, but i know they are gathering this information and putting it in their exhibits. thing with all the protests, whether it is a national protest was something happening in their state, they are grabbing that information and these protests, all the movements that have been -- it seems like it has been going on for 10 years with black lives matter but i know it hasn't. racew for a fact that our for equality has been going on since i feel like we came here. since we were stolen and brought
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over here. where we haveears been struggling to gain equality. , over 400that to say years -- everything did not just happen in virginia. to come for anybody me after this. not taking 1619 or any of that research away, but we also have to know that african-americans were here before then. in saying all that, the collections are in the museums and what is happening now is going to be part of what our museums are doing. it is going to be virtual for a little bit, but you are right. that the site is
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one of our members. we have what you guys have. [laughter] jon: we have a question for coming from laura. i have done one pilgrimage around the white supremacist in 1966. are the people who organized that connected to the heritage area effort and more generally for everybody else, what is the will of public/private partnerships to get the money we need to sustain this work we need? my students in public history believe that government should lead but the resources are usually not there. i know some private entities use voting by its history as more political than desegregation. danielse: jonathan pilgrimage is sponsored by the
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episcopalian church. it is done annually and it is not connected with anything governmental. it is not funded by anyone other than the episcopalians and donations. and for general information, a congresswoman from alabama is in the house of representatives and has 5989, and we are hoping for passage of that bill this year, if circumstances lead us to have to restart the effort, we will be up again in
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2021, so stay tuned. if you've got any interest in that -- exactly, you can go toht there, keep track of the legislation. because we are dealing with legislation, you may have to cover your park service badge. i wanted to, as we get towards the end of this panel, i wanted to ask each of you to take a and talk to us about what voting rights means to you. we have had a little bit of the history, the interpretation and presentation -- preservation, but as a concept, when someone mentions the concept of voting on wednesday, september 30 in the year 2020, what does voting rights mean for you?
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josephine: i have had a lot of heartache in terms of when i think of voting rights just because america was supposedly founded on democracy. the right to vote should be according to everyone. there would not be efforts to suppress voting. yet everywhere we go, the efforts exist. the other thing that concerns me -- then i want to refer back -- a building has one little room recognizing tent city but does not have any of of sncc, of the people the people who lived in tent
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city, none of those people are recognized. history is not being taught to our children. they need to know what blacks went through to get the right to vote. that is a big concern of mine. we always should have some interest in what is going on. that is a history that is not being recorded and nothing tangible that our children can see to recognize what happened. , when willhing is the people in america decide to honor this commitment to the
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principles? up on that, ag comment from massachusetts, we need to keep educating in all schools, following up under point. ajena, your thoughts? me,a: voting rights, to means so much because of our own family history. when i was five years old, my big cousin steve started telling me, you need to vote, you need to make sure when you grow up, you vote. you might think that would have been lost on a little kid but it wasn't. i voted every chance i can get and i brought my son with me when he was about six to the polls and now my son is running for city council in richmond.
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he'd you a picture of us going to the polls when he was in fourth grade -- he drew a picture of us going to the polls when he was in fourth grade. i created programs, i started delving into my ancestors' history and found out that one of my ancestors was killed because they were trying to suppress the vote in the area. that the powery and the right to vote is critical. it is so important for us to exercise that right, to make sure that we can change things. maggie walker was saying, things economically will not change unless women got the right to vote. one of her speeches from 1912.
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then, identified way back identified as soon as the right was granted constitutionally. back.not sit down and sit it is too important. alan: thank you. vedet, voting bites, what does it mean to you? vedet: that is a loaded question. i just have one word. mandatory. ajena, i remember when i was little, my mom was like, you are going to vote. i don't care who you are going to vote for, but you are going to vote. all my life, she would tell me what to do but this time, she did not tell me who i need to vote for. i was like, that doesn't make sense, now you want to be quiet? waswhat she was showing me your right to vote is your
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personal decision, what you have to vote. then we went to the polls as soon as i turned 18 and i was able to do it, the lines were not as long as they are now, but we stood in line and i casted my vote and the rest is history. telle it a point to everybody who can listen that it is mandatory. people literally died for us to have this right. tople are still dying for us have this right and it might not look like that, it might not look like folks are dying because of not being -- because of voters rights, but that is what it is. up andare locking people giving them the death sentence or locking people up and taking , it iseir rights to vote
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just mandatory. also teach part-time and i make sure to tell my students, this is your right. please. it is one of those things, you have a right and you abuse it or you have a right and you don't use it. abuse this one, please. on the good side. don't abusells -- people, but abuse the right to vote. we need that. it is mandatory. i know i put a bunch of words after that. it was a good panel, so i want to make sure to give you guys what you want so i can be invited back. [laughter] alan: all of you came in under your word count and we are in under our time count as well. one of the things that the
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voting rights issue strikes in me is this notion that history is going on today and maybe this summer, this odd year with the racial reckoning, black lives matter, it is making it clear that history is not something that was in 1893 or 1976, it was five minutes ago and being here in washington, d.c. and experiencing some of the things we have seen over the last couple months since the murder of george floyd has made my colleagues abundantly aware of the fact that as we continue to protect the historic and cultural resources that the park is not allages, it about the civil war and it did not stop in 1878. we are looking to continue to be good partners with our community partners, with our museum
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partners, and with our friends and colleagues in the association for the study of african-american life and history. tonda duncan.k she might be able to get some sleep. this woman has been entering emails at 3:30 in the morning and 4:30 in the afternoon and being a great steward and partner for all of this. devon ferguson, also help set this up. i can't end this without giving a shout out to sylvia cyrus, the executive director of the association of the study of african-american life and history, and the president, evelyn brooks, who continues to do great work in promoting and protecting the african-american experience. i'm alan spears. please look us up at www.npc
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for theo stands national police canine association, so make sure you get the right npca. turn it back over to you. thank you. american history tv is on social media. follow us at c-span history. next on the presidency, diversity of mary washington history professor william crawley talks about franklin was about's personality, new deal programs, and his admirers and critics in this talk from the university's great lives lecture series. >> welcome to today's lecture on franklin delano roosevelt. the man generally considered by historians to be the greatest president of the 20th century and even beyond that.


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