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This event was made possible, in part, by the following entities:

Falls of the James Group


Department of African American Studies

And the Sacred Ground Project would like to thank the team of people who have made this event possible by their labors, time, enthusiasm and brilliance in ways small and large.

Library of Virginia

Gregg Kimball, Director of Public Services & Outreach
Emma Ito, Education & Programs Specialist
Ashley Ramey, Community Outreach Specialist
Catherine Fitzgerald Wyatt, Education & Outreach Manager
Barbara Batson, Exhibition Coordinator
John Metz, Deputy of Collections & Programs
Christine Sisic, Graphic Designer
Amy Winegardner, Graphic Designer
John Thielbar, Event Services Coordinator
Mike Ezepek, Desktop & Applications Support
Cindy Marks, Communications & Marketing Specialist
Ann Henderson, Communications Manager
Support staff

The Shockoe Bottom Advocates

Jim Armstrong
Ellen Chapman
Justin Greenlee
Rev. Rodney Hunter
Marty Jewel
Anita Lee
Kat McNeal
Janet Queen Nzinga Taylor
Lynetta Thompson
Phil Wilayto
and those who distributed thousands of copies of The Virginia Defender newspaper in August and November


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Thank You!

Thank you! The symposium was a wonderful success.If you missed it, you can watch it on Facebook by clicking HERE


The Sacred Ground Historical Reclamation Project of the Virginia Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality will host “Truth & Conciliation in the 400th Year: A Shockoe Bottom Public History Symposium” to be held Saturday, December 7, 2019, at the Library of Virginia, 800 E. Broad Street (23219).

With panel discussions and cultural presentations, this all-day symposium will examine the history of Africans and people of African descent in Virginia from their earliest days to the present and the vital role that Shockoe Bottom has played in that history.

This nationally significant event is co-sponsored and hosted by the Library of Virginia, and will also present resources the library has available for African-American academic topics, family history researchers, and the general public.

Our goal is to make crystal-clear the historical impo…

Meet our Moderators

We are very pleased to confirm that Carmen Foster, Michael Blakey, and Christy Coleman have agreed to be moderators for our three main panel discussions. Learn more about them on the Participants page.


Meet our Performers!

We are very excited to have three wonderful Richmond area artists participating in the symposium, adding richness to what might be considered a traditional academic history discussion.