Local org. host tour on preserving communities of color

The Historic Black Towns and Settlements Alliance (HBTSA), a 501 (c)3, multi-state, historic preservation organization is hosting the “Preserving Communities of Color Conference,” is a weeklong, multi-venue event composed of pop-up classrooms, tours, roundtable discussions, workshops and other interactive activities focused entirely on the needs of communities of color, November 15 – 20. Organized by the Texas Branch of the HBTSA, the base of the conference will take place at the Hilton North Houston Hotel in the Greenspoint District, with additional activities taking place in Prairie View, Texas and San Antonio, Texas.

Following the Civil War, African Americans founded towns and communities across the United States. The history of many of those communities has not been well documented and their stories are rarely told in America’s history. Historic preservationists, community leaders, descendants, scholars and others are working together to ensure that the rich history, heritage and culture is preserved and celebrated as these communities are transformed into vibrant places and cultural destinations. Tuskegee, Alabama Mayor Johnny Ford, President of the Board of Directors of the HBTSA says, “We must make a concerted effort to build upon these legacies and tell our stories, commemorate these sites and preserve what’s left for the next generation to enjoy.”

The “Preserving Communities of Color Conference” is the first-ever gathering of historic black towns and settlements from across the nation. The conference is jam packed with more than 50 expert speakers and resources to help communities of color preserve their heritage, address challenges, and capitalize on opportunities. The aim of this event is to create a sustainable agenda for transforming historic black communities into thriving inclusive communities and cultural centers that embody the African-American experience of place, culture and heritage in America. We want to unite and assure that the untold history of African American places and people are included in America’s narrative.

This year’s featured guest speakers include: —

Ed Jones, Mayor of Grambling, Louisiana
Frank Jackson, Former Mayor of Prairie View Texas
Everett Fly, 2014 National Humanities Medal of Honor Winner Alberta McCrory, Mayor of Hobson City, Alabama

For more information and event registration, please visit blacktownsandsettlements.org