📜 Black History is American History! Dive in this February, with a month of exciting FREE events by Historic Germantown.
Ever notice how a lot of the history we’re taught in school sounds like chapters from the same patriotic novel? Indeed, some of our country’s favorite founding stories are complete myths – the ride of Paul Revere, for instance, and George Washington’s cherry tree that he never chopped down. We’re not even sure Betsy Ross sewed the first flag! She never claimed it, no one at the time ever said it. Wasn’t until her ancestors shopped her story to Harper’s New Monthly Magazine almost a hundred years after the Revolutionary War that the tale took hold. 🤔📰💰💰💰
We’re not saying that the guides at Independence National Historic Park are lying to millions of tourists every year, but they’re definitely only telling one part of the story. SPOILER ALERT: it’s the rich white male version, which leaves out so much!
That’s why it’s really important to set time aside as a nation, and make an effort to validate other truths, events, and lived experiences in our country’s history, apart from the dominant narrative. Black History Month encourages all of us to find a better understanding of our multi-racial, multi-cultural society.
🌳🏠 Historic Germantown is a great place to start! ⭐📌
Come out for a very special all-day Open House, and a whole month of free local events, from art tours to nature walks to space odysseys. 🎨🐐🌱🚀 Watch this list! 👀 We’ll update with new events from other city organizations as they become available.
Meanwhile we hope you’ll be inspired to explore the rich history running deep in our northwest corner of Philadelphia. Best wishes for an enriching Black History Month!
✊🏾🖤❤️BLACK HISTORY MONTH WITH HISTORIC GERMANTOWN 💛💚✊🏾
STENTON: Dinah Memorial Artist Walk
FRI FEB 2nd | 6PM
4601 N. 18th St.
A conversation with renowned Philly artist Karyn Olivier at Stenton Museum, on her poignant memorial to Dinah, an enslaved woman who lived and toiled on-site in the 1700’s, and through exhaustive research has come to life in stories, film, and performance. FREE, register via Ticketleap. More info at Stenton.org/Dinah
FREEDOM’S BACKYARD: Artifacts, Memories, and Family Roots
SAT FEB 3rd | 1PM – 4PM
5501 Germantown Ave
Like having three different museums under one roof, with thoughtfully-curated collections on display from the Lest We Forget Museum of Slavery, the Chew family’s estate Cliveden, and Germantown Historical Society’s vast library of local photos, documents, interviews, and much more. In addition, experts from the African American Genealogy Group will be on-hand to answer questions and help families trace their lineage and identify ancestors. Warm drinks and light refreshments. Bring the whole family! If you’ve never explored Historic Germantown, you’ll be amazed by all there is to discover here. (FREE) historicgermantownpa.org | lwfms.com | cliveden.org
LASALLE UNIVERSITY ART MUSEUM: Black History Month Reception
MON FEB 5th | 4:30PM – 6:30PM
Hayman Hall (lower level), 1900 W. Olney Ave
LaSalle University hosts a free public reception to mark the beginning of Black History Month activities on campus. The galleries will feature impactful works by African American artists, from the University’s permanent collection highlighting major Black artistic movements. Snacks, drinks, discussion. Artcollection.lasalle.edu
BLACK HISTORY MONTH MURAL TOUR with Historic Fair Hill
SAT FEB 10th | 1PM
2901 Germantown Ave
Local historian and educator Carolyn Singleton leads this fascinating tour of murals around the Fair Hill Burial Ground. With true tales from the Underground Railroad, its leaders and its supporters. You’ll also learn about neighbors now living in the area, driving the charge for social justice today. With unforgettable art and lots of community pride! Historicfairhill.com
DINAH’S WORLD: A Glimpse into Revolutionary Black Philadelphia (ZOOM)
THURS FEB 22nd | 6:30PM – 7:30PM
Virtual event from Stenton Plantation
Completed in 1730 as a county-seat, Stenton Plantation house was built for the prestigious Logan family who supported a diverse community of servants and enslaved Africans, including a woman named Dinah, who lived and worked here more than 60 years. In this virtual event, local historians will piece together the story of Philadelphia’s earliest Black residents, sharing fascinating information about daily life of everyday people and also luminaries like the Forten family (who was deeply engaged in civic life and politics at the time, and yet left out of most American history textbooks). FREE, rsvp for link. Stenton.org
AWBURY ARBORETUM: Resistance, Renewal, Resiliency
SAT FEB 24th | 1PM – 3PM
One Awbury Road
Celebrate Black History Month with a triple-treat of life-affirming fun, sponsored by U of P’s Center for Africana Studies. 1PM, take a nature walk with The Philly Goat Project (includes story book reading and goat cuddles!); 1:30PM, meet Harriet Tubman! Millicent Sparks brings this historic figure to life with a performance and audience Q&A (in character); 2:30PM, learn about microgreens with Black and Planted (includes take-home seedlings). This family-friendly event is FREE but advance registration is required, please use the form at Awbury.org
JOHNSON HOUSE: Liberation Through Afrofuturism
SUN FEB 25th | 3PM – 5PM
Germantown Mennonite Church
21 West Washington Lane (also streaming)
Afrofuturism is an artistic movement that blends science fiction with Black history and African culture to envision new worlds, possibilities, and perspectives. Attendees will explore how imagining is the first step of becoming, and how envisioning the future can be both an act of resistance, and a great source of joy and liberation. Discussion will be led by three educators, and will feature four short films illuminating the lives of African Americans past, present, and across the Diaspora. Hybrid event, attend in person or via online streaming. A community program presented by ASALH, (local chapters), Johnson House Historic Site, and SIFTMedia 215 Collective. FREE, register on Eventbrite | Johnsonhouse.org
📜 For more information, please see Historic Germantown’s calendar at historicgermantownpa.org 📅
ℹ️ Historic Germantown offers a wide variety of tours, events, and special exhibitions throughout the year, in more than a dozen extraordinary houses, museums, and other NW Philly landmarks. Follow @HistoricGermantown on Facebook & Instagram.
BONUS: Two other Germantown museums for great Black history every day of the year.
ACES Museum — A fascinating archive and poignant tribute to Black and Minority veterans serving the US in WWII. Includes war photography and memorabilia, vintage wear, and even an art gallery. The museum is also a Veterans Service Organization providing supportive services to local veteran families. 5801 Germantown Ave, 214-842-3742 | acesveteransmuseum.com
Black Writers Museum — Exhibits classic and contemporary Black literature, highlighting authors and exposing visitors to generations of voices underrepresented in America’s literary canon. Autographed books, rare newspapers, photos, journals, recordings and more bring to life Black culture through the eyes of the many gifted Black writers in history. 5800 Germantown Avenue, 267-297-3078 | blackwritersmuseum.com
If you know of an event or location we should include in this list, please let us know in the comments below or email firstname.lastname@example.org