Jubilee Project Wrap-up and Future

Jubilee Project wrap-up discussion, College of Charleston, November 19th, 2013.   Pictured (facing camera, left to right): Mike Coker, and Simon Lewis; (with backs to camera, from right to left): Jack Bass, Deni Mitchell, Jonathan Green, and Aurora Harris. On the screen is a map of South Carolina showing all the former rice plantations -- http://www.ricekingdom.com/plantationmap.html.

Jubilee Project wrap-up discussion, College of Charleston, November 19th, 2013. Pictured (facing camera, left to right): Richard Ogden, Mike Coker, and Simon Lewis; (with backs to camera, from right to left): Jack Bass, Deni Mitchell, Jonathan Green, and Aurora Harris. On the screen is a map of South Carolina showing all the former rice plantations — http://www.ricekingdom.com/plantationmap.html.

On November 19th, the anniversary of the Gettysburg Address in 1863, a small gathering of Jubilee Project stalwarts met at the College of Charleston to discuss where we have been and where we go next.  Emerging from our discussions, we have decided that next semester, Margaret Mauk will put together a physical scrap-book along with a digital version to record as fully as possible the key events of our Year of Jubilee.  If you have physical artifacts–invitations, programs, flyers, newspaper clippings, etc. –that you would like us to include in the scrapbook, please send them to me as soon as possible c/o the Department of English, College of Charleston, 66 George Street, Charleston, SC 29424-0001.  Likewise, if you would like to write a report or a review of any of the events that made up the Jubilee Project, or if you would like to write a reflection on the Project, please send those to me via e-mail at lewiss@cofc.edu.  We will offer the physical scrapbook to the Special Collections department of the Addlestone Library for safe-keeping and for use by future researchers, and hope to have the digital version accepted by the Low  Country Digital Library.

During the meeting on the 19th, I referred to a planning charrette held back in 2007, and pointed out that many of the goals identified by that charrette to overcome the acknowledgment gap that exists between public recognition of white and black contributions to local history have been achieved, at least in part. Aurora Harris’s stellar work with the Preservation Society , for instance, made major contributions to publicly acknowledging African American contributions to area history. But there is much more to be done. As such, we decided that one way the Jubilee Project could remain effective beyond this year of multiple anniversaries would be as a kind of clearing-house for all kinds of events to do with emancipation and educational access. Accordingly, I invite you all to keep on sending me details of any events that might be in the spirit of the Jubilee Project in the coming months and years.  I will attempt to maintain a calendar on this blog-site and will continue to make postings to the Facebook page.

Finally, please be on the look-out for a number of ambitious events coming up in the future: the 2015 commemoration of the end of the Civil War (May 1st, 2015?); a major conference on slave port cities and public memory (March 2016); and a conference on South Carolina’s Reconstruction Constitution (March 2018).

In the meantime, if you’re in Charleston this New Year, please do consider attending one of the many Watch Night services, and join us for the annual Emancipation Day Parade.

Thank you all for your support over the last year and for your participation in the Jubilee Project.

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