We urge area residents to mark their calendars and make plans now to attend several upcoming events scheduled in honor of African-American History Month.
The events will provide opportunities to learn more about vital chapters in Denton County history and celebrate important cultural achievements.
Among the planned events is a lecture on the relocation of the Quakertown community, to be hosted by the Denton County Office of History and Culture at noon Thursday in the commissioner’s courtroom at the Courthouse on the Square, 110 W. Hickory St.
University of North Texas graduate student Chelsea Stallings, who is writing her master’s thesis on the Quakertown community, will lead the lecture, which is free and open to the public.
In the 1920s, Quakertown, which was made up of nearly 70 black families and Denton’s black business district, was uprooted and relocated to east and southeast portions of the city to make room for a city park, now the site of Quakertown Park and the Denton civic and senior centers.
Much has already been written about Quakertown, but Stalling’s lecture promises to shed light on the story from a different viewpoint, said Peggy Riddle, director of the Denton County Office of History and Culture. Hopefully, Riddle added, the lecture will encourage more research about Quakertown.
“It’s a part of our history we don’t want to forget and we want to keep the story alive,” she told us.
The St. James A.M.E. Church will host a two-day African-American History Month celebration themed “Civil Rights in America,” on Feb. 22 and 23 at 1107 E. Oak St., recognizing the civil rights movement’s impact on American history.
Festivities planned from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 22 will include a community health fair, speakers, skits, displays and an inventors’ exhibit. The event will conclude with a 3 p.m. concert Feb. 23 that will include vocalists from area churches, poetry, readings and a musical drama.
The Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center, 1300 Wilson St., will host a program recognizing Freedom Fighters from noon to 2 p.m. Feb. 22.
The free event will include monologues about historical figures such as Nelson Mandela and Marcus Garvey, and celebrate African-Americans who’ve fought for the equal rights and freedoms of black people in America.
Other upcoming events include:
A program titled “New Visions: Making Black History in Your Life and in the Lives of others” is planned at 7 p.m. Feb. 20 at the First State Bank Center for the Performing Arts on the Gainesville campus of North Central Texas College;
Borman Elementary School, 1201 Parvin St., will host its annual afternoon and evening Black History Program at 1:15 and 6 p.m. Feb. 20, featuring a fashion show, food and performances from choirs, the Drum Club and AstroTones teachers gospel choir.
We appreciate the efforts of those who have worked to plan and host these and other programs planned to celebrate African-American History Month.
Such events provide invaluable learning opportunities and deserve our support.