First Africans Commemoration on August 20 at Jamestown Settlement Features Spoken Word, Community Discussion & Showing of ‘History Half Told is Untold’ Documentary
Posted on August 8, 2022, by
WILLIAMSBURG, Va., August 8, 2022 – A special First Africans Commemoration at 2 p.m. Saturday, August 20 at Jamestown Settlement will honor the legacy of the first recorded Africans brought to Virginia in 1619.
Reflecting on the theme of “being first” through an African American lens, a 90-minute program in the Robins Foundation Theater will feature a spoken-word presentation and a community discussion.
Barbara Hamm Lee of WHRV-FM’s “Another View” will moderate a panel discussion featuring Christy S. Coleman, executive director of the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, and Clayton Singleton, a Norfolk artist, teacher and spoken-word performer.
At 3:30 p.m., attendees can enjoy a special showing of “History Half Told is Untold,” a documentary produced by the Let Freedom Ring Foundation that offers an in-depth look at the 245-year history of The Historic First Baptist Church – the oldest continually active African American church in the United States established by free and enslaved Blacks.
Extend learning about African and African American experiences in 17th-century Virginia through Jamestown Settlement’s expansive gallery exhibits, dramatic films and engaging interactives that share the story of Virginia Indian, English and West Central African cultures.
Using period artifacts and innovative technology, permanent exhibits share historical accounts of the first documented Africans brought to Virginia in 1619 from their homeland in Ndongo (Angola) to life in the Virginia colony and evolution of a new African American culture. The “From Africa to Virginia” multimedia presentation chronicles African encounters with Europeans, impact on African culture and the development of the transatlantic slave trade.
The documentary film, “1607: A Nation Takes Root,” which will be shown every 30 minutes in Presentation Hall, traces the evolution of the Virginia Company that sponsored the Jamestown colony, examines the relationship between the English colonists and Powhatan Indians, and chronicles the arrival of the first recorded Africans in 1619 – including the story of Angelo, one of the first African women named in Jamestown’s historical record.
How to Attend the First Africans Commemoration
The “First Africans Commemoration” special event is included with museum admission: $18.00 for adults, $9.00 for ages 6-12, and free for children ages 5 and under. Residents of James City County, York County and the City of Williamsburg, including William & Mary students, receive free admission with proof of residency. Tickets can be purchased online or in person. Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, Jamestown Settlement is located on State Route 31 just southwest of Williamsburg.
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