Experience Black History Month at The National Center for Civil and Human Rights

Center launches multi-year initiative—Truth & Transformation: Confronting History to Create an Equitable Future; unveils programming through February with support from PNC

Feb. 15, 2022 (ATLANTA) The National Center for Civil and Human Rights (The Center) celebrates Black History Month with virtual programs and activities for the entire family through February. Presenting sponsor PNC is partnering with The Center for a second consecutive year to support engaging programming that tells the story of the shining history of civil rights, and its ongoing relevance today.

February also marks the beginning of The Center’s multi-year initiative “Truth & Transformation: Confronting the Past to Create an Equitable Future”, to raise awareness of historical events in Atlanta – painful chapters that happened in prominent places that have not been recognized or memorialized.  The Center is particularly focused on two glaring omissions: convict leasing atrocities at the Chattahoochee Brick Factory and Bellwood Quarry, and the 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre, where at least 25 African Americans were lynched over a four-day killing spree.

The initiative plans an equity-focused, multi-stakeholder engagement effort to build a memorial about convict leasing at Atlanta’s newest and largest public green space, Bellwood Quarry. Convict leasing was a practice that government leaders and private businesses used after Emancipation to re-enslave black men and women, reinstating bondage for generations after the Civil War ended.

“Confronting and sharing this suppressed history is essential to creating a more equitable future,” said Jill Savitt, The Center’s president and CEO. “Black History Month is the ideal moment to begin our Truth & Transformation work to engage folks to understand how we arrived at this moment of national discussion about race, equity, and justice, and share the information we need to move forward in a different way. We’re grateful to PNC for supporting this work and providing resources to increase access.”

Upcoming Black History Month programming includes:

  • February 15: The 1906 Atlanta Race Massacre & The Truth of History, a panel of experts and stakeholders will discuss the effort to raise awareness of this atrocity. Featuring Hank Klibanoff, director of the Georgia Civil Rights Cold Cases Project at Emory University; Marlon Burnley, associate artistic director, Out of Hand Theater, Equitable Dinners Playwright; and Ann Hill-Bond 1906 Atlanta Massacre Brownsville Committee Chair of The Fulton County Remembrance Coalition (FCRC).
  • February 16: Children’s story time featuring “Justice Makes a Difference” read by author, professor and civil rights attorney Dr. Artika Tyner.
  • February 20: Equitable Dinners and the Fulton County Remembrance Coalition (FCRC): “Stories from the Soil” inspired by the Equal Justice Initiative – a series of conversation dinner events remembering the lives of 36 documented victims of racial terror in Fulton County between 1889 – 1936. Stories from the Soil serves to create a narrative to counter that of white supremacy by identifying the humanity of the victims and the injustice imposed upon them.
  • February 23: Truth & Transformation: Westside Atlanta and Public Memorialization – a panel of stakeholders explores the history of the Bellwood Quarry and Chattahoochee Brink Company, two sites that relied on convict leasing. The conversation will also explain the work that has been done in bringing the true history of these spaces to the public’s knowledge and the efforts to create a memorial to those forced into convict labor.

For more information and to reserve your tickets, visit this link https://www.civilandhumanrights.org/buy-tickets/.

About the National Center for Civil and Human Rights

The Center, founded in 2014, is a museum and human rights educational institution located in Atlanta, GA, the cradle of civil rights. We create dynamic and empathy- building experiences, teach history’s connection to the present, generate brave and difficult conversations about necessary issues, and inspire the change-maker in each of us to promote civil and human rights in our communities and the world. The Center connects the U.S. civil rights movement of the 1950’s and 1960’s to global human rights movements for the rights of people of color, women, immigrants, people with disabilities, LGBTQIA+ people, and other marginalized groups. Through our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative, the Campaign for Equal Dignity, mission-based Institutes, expansive educational offerings, and immersive and engaging storytelling we inspire each of us to reflect and think critically, exercise empathy in action, and create positive change locally and globally. For more information about The Center, visit our website at civilandhumanrights.org. Follow us on: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @ctr4chr, and LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ncchr.



Shani Drake, Director of Marketing & Public Engagement

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James Richards, Communications Consultant

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