Wellcome to the Meeting of the Future
Magazine Online    The Authority On African-American Conventions, Incentives, & Leisure Travel
Industry Briefs
CELEBRATE BLACK HISTORY MONTH IN RICHMOND, VA FEBRUARY 2022

Richmond has a strong connection to Black history in the United States - they were the center of the domestic slave trade in North America, the origin of 1 in 4 African Americans, home to the 'Harlem of the South' and a gateway to Black culture and the Black story that shaped the United States. Black History Month is a great opportunity for travelers to learn more about Richmond's deep history, the incredible progress the destination has made and a future that values inclusion and diversity.

 Below is a sampling of what visitors can see and do in Richmond during Black History Month from visiting historical attractions, perusing powerful street art from Black artists, dining at Black-owned establishments,  immersing in Black culture and more.

Slavery Reconciliation Stature

DO

·      Learn more about Richmond's storied history at The Black History Museum & Cultural Center of Virginia; the  American Civil War Museum, the f irst museum of its kind to explore the war through Union, Confederate and African-American perspectives ; the self-guided  Richmond Slave Trail, which includes  seventeen markers along the path that display somber and illuminating information on the history of slavery in Richmond; and the African Burial Ground, once home to the public gallows and now covered with tributes to General Gabriel, who was executed on this spot in 1800 after organizing a revolt of enslaved people

·      Explore Richmond's monuments: 

o    The new Emancipation and Freedom Memorial, one of the few nationwide monuments commemorating enslaved people, features two 12-foot bronze statues representing a man, woman, and infant newly freed from slavery. The statue was dedicated in late September, shortly after the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee was removed from Monument Avenue

o    Slavery Reconciliation Statue,  which shows two figures in an embrace - and covered with images of shackles and slave ships

o    Henry Box Brown,  an enslaved man who climbed into a two-foot-by-three-foot crate and mailed himself to freedom in Philadelphia in 1849 after his wife and children were sold   

o    Kehinde Wiley's reimagined  " Rumors of War " monument of a young African American dressed in urban streetwear outside the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA)

o    Virginia Civil Rights Memorial on the Capitol grounds

o    Bill "Bojangles" Robinson  monument  in Jackson Ward, commemorating the young entertainer who helped to break down barriers in Hollywood in the 1930's and 1940's

o    Arthur Ashe monument , the lone monument still standing  on Monument Avenue  after the Confederate statues were torn down

·      Check out Richmond's incredible street art scene with many powerful murals by Black artists, including  Hamilton Glass' Mending Walls, a healing public art project  that brings together artists from diverse cultural backgrounds in creating murals that address issues of racial injustice, where we are now in society as well as how we can move forward through understanding and collaboration.

Four new murals were recently added, with each pair of artists collaborating with a local non-profit organization dedicated to serving the Black community in areas including food justice, mental health, criminal justice reform and housing.

·      Experience Richmond's Black culture scene with a visit to the Elegba Folklore Society, a year-round, lively celebration of African and African American culture with a variety of events, performances and experiences.

EAT

·      Dine at vibrant new Black-owned restaurants and cafés with diverse flavor combinations such as Lillie PearlMs. Girlee's KitchenJewFro   and   Ruby Scoops.

SHOP

·      Richmond is full of Black-owned businesses which visitors can help support during their trip. Browse natural products like bath bombs, hair care and skincare sets from Adiva Naturals; enjoy wine and art at  C'est Le Vin wine bar and a gallery; shop for the kids at  Little Nomad,  a curated collection of baby and children's clothing, books and toys; indulge in statement pieces, handbags and accessories from  Sassy Jones Boutique and more.

NEIGHBORHOOD SPOTLIGHT

·      Richmond's Jackson Ward is the nation's first historically registered Black urban neighborhood. Once known as the "Black Wall Street of the South" and "Birthplace of Black Entrepreneurship," the district was as a center for black enterprise and entertainment from the early 1920's to the late 1940's. The district has made a comeback in recent years, now  home to notable attractions such as the Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site, honoring the first African-American woman  to charter a bank and serve as bank president,  the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia and the Bill "Bojangles" Robinson Monument, public art including the Mending Walls murals, and a variety of Black-owned restaurants such as Mama J's and Soul Taco.

The JXN Project  is  a new initiative which aims to honestly and accurately capture the pivotal role of Richmond in the evolution of the Black American experience and in particular, Jackson Ward,  an often under-told and overlooked story when discussing the local origins of Black excellence and enterprise in the national narrative.

Advertisement

A Global Destination