“Building a University of the People: The Movement for a Free-standing Black Cultural Center at UNC-Chapel Hill”
As the SOHP’s University History Field Scholar, Charlotte Fryar has spent the last year exploring one of UNC-Chapel Hill’s most significant movements in student activism for racial justice, which led to the creation and construction of a free-standing building for the Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History. The movement for a free-standing black cultural center, with its climax between 1991-93, was part of a larger and longer movement, cultivated by generations of UNC students, who organized to address the ways in which the University’s leadership has fallen short of reconciling with the racialized foundations on which the institution is built. This talk will discuss oral history interviews with alumni who were active in the movement for a free-standing Stone Center and the ways in which interviews with alumni-activists can help to clarify for both current students and administrators what is at stake in addressing University history and how to reconcile with that history in order to act justly for all members of the UNC community–in the past, present, and future.
Charlotte Fryar is a PhD candidate in UNC’s Department of American Studies. She has previously served as Lab Associate for the Digital Innovation Lab and as a researcher for the Chancellor’s Task Force on University History. Her dissertation, a hybrid of digital and textual components, is titled “Building A University of the People.” It investigates the history and continued legacies of racial justice student activism at UNC-Chapel Hill from 1968 to the present as a way to examine institutional racism in and on the landscape of the University’s campus.
This event is free and open to the public, but RSVPs to firstname.lastname@example.org will be appreciated. Light refreshments will be served.
William Sturkey’s talk “The Jewel of the Delta” will highlight the history of Mound Bayou, Mississippi in the national black media during the era of Jim Crow. Controlled and inhabited exclusively by African Americans, Mound Bayou played a distinct role in the African American imagination for over six decades as an example of black educational and economic achievement. This talk will unfold the history of Mound Bayou in black public life across three distinct stages, exploring why the town mattered so much and examining Mound Bayou’s crucial role in facilitating coverage of the most explosive lynching story in American history and the early Civil Rights Movement.
This talk is free and open to the public, and light refreshments will be served. RSVPs to email@example.com are appreciated but not required.
Back Ways and “Good Roads”
Southern Oral History Program field scholars Darius Scott and Rachel Cotterman explore recent findings from Back Ways, an SOHP project that examines the relationship between infrastructure development and experiences of racial segregation in the rural American South. Their talk will focus on the activities of the North Carolina “Good Roads Movement,” an influential Progressive Era (1890s-1920s) reform project that worked to improve rural roads. The movement was shaped by both appeals to historic agrarian racism and commitments to scientific objectivity. The result was a supposedly unbiased plan that effectively institutionalized inequitable road development. This talk will address the challenges and possibilities of combining archival research and oral history in exploring the rural South as shaped by public policy and lived experience. You can read more here and listen to a “Press Record” podcast about this project via SoundCloud or iTunes.
This talk is free and open to the public, but RSVPs to firstname.lastname@example.org are appreciated. Light refreshments will be provided.
Join us as NCGrowth Director Mark Little discusses economic recovery efforts in Princeville, North Carolina. Hit hard by Hurricane Floyd in 1999 and again by Hurricane Matthew in 2016, Princeville is a historically black town founded in 1885. NCGrowth is an initiative of the Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise.
This event is free and open to the public, and light refreshments will be served. RSVPs to email@example.com will be appreciated!