Juneteenth is observed on June 19th each year to commemorate the end of slavery in the United States. Originating in Texas, June 19th as African American Emancipation Day has spread nationwide. To honor Juneteenth, many organizations, including those in Woods Hole, emphasize education and celebration during the day, week, and month of June.
The African-American Trail History Project is dedicated to learning, sharing, and discussing the history of the African American people of Martha’s Vineyard. The History Project has created the African-American Heritage Trail of Martha’s Vineyard. The trail includes 30 sites honoring contributions made by people of African descent. They hope to continue research and publish undocumented history while involving Island community in their efforts.
You can visit the trail and learn more about African-American Heritage history on Martha’s Vineyard through driving tours of Oak Bluffs, Edgartown, or the whole island. If you are more interested in traveling by foot, try out one of the fully narrated walking tours in the Highlands Area of Oak Bluffs. The trail organization also provides tours of Black-Owned Businesses in Vineyard Haven. Living in the area and want to become more involved? The African-American Heritage Trail is seeking tour leaders as well as a director of research and outreach!
The Woods Hole Library is hosting a Social Justice Book Club this summer. The July book selection is Black Art: A Cultural History (Third Edition) by Richard Powell. This selection concentrated on how works of art created during social upheaval and transformation use Black culture both as the subject and context, adding to the African diaspora. The discussion will take place on July 20, 2022 at 7:00 pm.
You’ll also want to keep your eyes open for events being held in observance of Junteenth next month including an event hosted by the Woods Hole Diversity Advisory Committee (WHDAC). On Sunday, June 19th, 2022 from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm. Join others in a contemplative freedom walk as part of the Juneteenth celebrations.
You may walk in the Highfield Gardens or the surrounding Beebe Woods. Light refreshments and information about the Juneteenth celebration will be available under the tent on the Highfield lawn. The event is free and open to the public. Visit the Highfield Hall & Gardens website for more information. .