Monday, January 24, 2022

A Lecture Series of Interest

The Columbia County Historical Society has announced its 2022 Winter-Spring Lecture Series entitled Early & Diverse New York. The first lecture in the series, "On Researching African American History in the Hudson Valley," takes place on Zoom this Saturday, January 29, at 4:30 p.m. The announcement of the upcoming lecture describes it in this way:
While much has been written about the Black Diaspora from the south to the north, relatively little is known about Blacks who were brought directly from Africa to the slave market in 'Albany' and sold locally. Unlike the South where slavery was abolished in 1865, manumission in New York State occurred gradually from 1785, onwards.
As a result, northern Black experiences were far different than those in the south. Even as slaves, some skilled craftsmen traveled freely for their work. Most freed people were educated in local schools. Some owned businesses or were farmers. Many were members of the Dutch Reform Church, while others started the first African Methodist Episcopal Church in the area. They formed relationships with other residents--both Black and white.
To this day, many Black families continue to bear the surnames of the County's Dutch founding fathers (Van Ness, Van Buren, Gardiner, Van Alen, Witbeck, etc.) and continue to live in Columbia County and the surrounding area.

To learn more about the lecture and to purchase tickets, click here.

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