As the opening to the National Museum for African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) draws nearer, the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) founded by Dr. Carter G. Woodson will assemble a panel of distinguished speakers to discuss the importance of Woodson’s life and legacy.
The event, to celebrate Founder’s Day, will take place on September 9, 2016 at 6:00 p.m. at the Blackburn Center at Howard University in Washington, D.C., and will feature Dr. Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, the Victor S. Thomas Professor of History and of African and African American Studies at Harvard University and National President of ASALH; Dr. Pero Dagbovie, Associate Dean of the Graduate School and Professor of History, Michigan State University; John Whittington Franklin, Senior Office Manager, Office of External Affairs, Office of the Director, National Museum of African American History and Culture; and Reginald Chapple, Division Chief, Office of Partnership and Philanthropic Stewardship, National Park Service. Dr. Jim Harper, Chair and Professor of History at North Carolina Central University and Vice President for Programs and Publications at ASALH, will moderate the conversation.
Organizers say that the panel discussion, which is free and open to the public, will focus on Woodson’s vision and the impact of two of his creations: the Journal of Negro History (now the Journal of African American History) and Negro History Week (now Black History Month) in laying the foundation for African Americans of his day as well as future generations.
The theme for the event is “Hallowed Grounds; Sites of African American Memories, A Conversation on the Life and Legacy of Dr. Carter G. Woodson.”
Woodson’s home in the northwest section of Washington, D.C., served for many years as the centerpiece of his scholarly, activist and entrepreneurial work. It is now registered as a national landmark site and is maintained by the National Park Service. In a recent interview with Diverse¸ Higginbotham recounted visiting Woodson’s home as a child, with her father—Albert Brooks—who was secretary-treasurer of the association and a longtime member.
“I am so excited about this year’s Founder’s Day event as ASALH presents a special discussion on the life and legacy of our creator, Dr. Carter G. Woodson,” said Higginbotham, who is the author of numerous books including Righteous Discontent: The Women’s Movement in the Black Baptist Church, 1880-1920. “The Association’s Founder’s Day event is a must-attend event for all students, educators, scholars and interested individuals who have a passion to learn more about the father of Black History and the continuation of his legacy.”
Woodson’s life and history will be on display at the NMAAHC when it opens its doors on September 24.
“Woodson’s beliefs have really shaped the creation of this newest museum,” Dr. Lonnie Bunch, the director of NMAAHC, has said.
Jamal Eric Watson can be reached at [email protected]. You can follow him on twitter@jamalericwatson