August 26, 2009
Najah Duvall-Gabriel, alumnus of the historic preservation program and a member of the African American Heritage Preservation group, is featured in the Washington Post for her efforts to preserve Prince George's County's rich African American heritage.
Prince George's county is thought to be the most affluent majority-black county in the country, but many of its residents believe that the African American heritage deeply rooted in the county is being lost to redevelopment. Some of the sites the African American Heritage Preservation group is working to preserve include: the Good Luck School for Colored in Glenn Dale, a schoolhouse built about 1899; the Butler House, an 1850s home once owned by freed slaves; and Wilmer's Park in Brandywine, which was part of the "Chitlin' Circuit," a place where black singers and dancers entertained in the 1950s and '60s when Jim Crow discrimination prevented them from performing in white establishments.
Dr. Donald Linebaugh, Director of UM's Historic Preservation program said, "Najah's work with the African American Heritage Preservation group is an excellent example of how students in our historic preservation program explore the relationship between structures, culture, and community, and engage the expanded world of preserving everyone's heritage."
The African American Heritage Preservation group is a consortium of nonprofit groups including the county's historical society, the genealogical society and governmental agencies, as well as residents interested in African American preservation.
Click here to read the full article: Preserving the Other Past of Prince George's
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