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The Rochester African-American Landmarks Project Needs Your Help

August 19th, 2013

African-American dancers among the performers at Bardos' Inn in Gates, N.Y. c1930-1935 [PHOTO: Albert R. Stone Collection]
The Landmark Society is reaching out to the Rochester community to gather facts, events, places, and stories that have been important in the lives of ordinary African-Americans in Rochester. We need your help with this important project…

Members of the Black American Racers Association. Not 100% sure if this is a Rochester team... but we think it may be. [PHOTO PROVIDED BY: Landmark Society]
Made possible by a grant from the Finger Lakes Regional Development Council and the New York State Council on the Arts, this project aims to identify landmarks that are significant to Rochester’s African-American community, and to help those that are endangered to qualify for tax credits or spark interest in their preservation or reuse.

Since many of these sites are in urban neighborhoods in need of assistance, this effort could become the catalyst for revitalization of entire blocks or neighborhoods in our City.

Rochester was the home of abolitionist Frederick Douglass external link and it was a major stop on the Underground Railroad external link. But that’s not all. Rochester is incredibly rich with art & music history (jazz, dance, etc.) and many African-American businesses starting with Austin Seward external link and his meat market in 1817! But you don’t have to go quite that far back in time.

Reverand Dr. James E. Rose stands with members of the Mt. Olivet Baptist Choral Society. Rose taught African-American history, organized clubs, and was the president of the local NAACP. 1924. [PHOTO PROVIDED BY: Landmark Society]
We are looking for places where African Americans have lived, worked, and raised a family; the location where an important event took place; the home of someone who was special somehow. A park, a school, a corner store, any place that you remember that was important to you at some time in your life…

We want to connect these places with the experiences of real people that make them important, to create a special interest in them that will attract investment, inspire younger generations with identity and community pride, and tell the story of people who came to Rochester and made a life, raised a family and formed a community.

Please tell your friends and family, and join us for two public “listening” sessions:

Thursday, August 22nd
5:15pm-6:45pm
Arnett Library
310 Arnett Blvd. Rochester

Wednesday, September 11th
6:30pm-8:00pm
Holy Rosary Church Campus
14 Lexington Ave. Rochester

Bring your friends, memories, photos, etc. and be ready to share ideas. Please direct questions to Larry Francer, 585.546.7029 x14.

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This entry was posted on Monday, August 19th, 2013 at 7:45 am and is filed under Art + Culture, Rochester History, Rochester News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

One Response to “The Rochester African-American Landmarks Project Needs Your Help”

  1. sally parker says:

    this is such an exciting project! lots of stories waiting to be told.


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