Genesee Country Village & Museum will host a celebration of Juneteenth, featuring stores of Black Americans in Western NY in the years following emancipation and the abolition of slavery in the United States on Saturday, June 18th.
The event will focus on the everyday lives of both former enslaved and free Black Americans – seeking to reunite with family members scattered across the country, establishing businesses, building relationships in their communities, and both celebrating and continuing to advocate for freedom and equality.
Attendees will be able to visit the George Eastman Boyhood Home to see what life was like for a Black family living in Western New York in the 1860s, learn about apprenticeships in skilled trades at the Cooper Shop, and attend a Reflection Gathering. Visitors to Honoring Juneteenth will have the opportunity to explore historic foods throughout the Village inspired by the recipes of Malinda Russell, the first known Black female published cookbook author.
Historic cooking experts at GCV&M will talk about Malinda Russell’s book and provide a tasting in the Livingston Backus House Kitchen. The D.B. Munger & Co. Confectionery will also offer prepared recipes from the cookbook for sale.
As part of the ongoing partnership between GCV&M and Rochester Institute of Technology, Professor Richard Newman will present “Furthering Freedom: Emancipation Day Celebrations and the Civil Rights Struggle in Late-19th-Century American Society,” a talk focused on the connection between celebrations of freedom and the ongoing struggle for representation and equality for Black Americans.
Visitors can also attend story time in the John L. Wehle Gallery with readings presented by The North Star Players; explore the journey of entrepreneur Austin Steward, a successful business owner from Rochester, NY; learn about local writers and orators including William Wells Brown; delve into the history of Fannie Barrier Williams, the first Black woman to graduate from the Brockport State Normal School, now SUNY Brockport; and so much more.
This program will take place from 10 am to 4 pm. For more information or to purchase tickets, click here.
Photo of Juneteenth celebration courtesy Genesee Country Village & Museum.