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New York's African Burial Ground...Spread the word...

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  • dr reality
    ... From: Luther A. Smith [mailto:luther1906@yahoo.com] Sent: Tuesday, September 30, 2003 11:57 PM To: historynotes-owner@yahoogroups.com Subject: New York s
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 30 11:38 PM
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      -----Original Message-----
      From: Luther A. Smith [mailto:luther1906@...]
      Sent: Tuesday, September 30, 2003 11:57 PM
      To: historynotes-owner@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: New York's African Burial Ground...Spread the word...



      FYI, PLEASE RESPOND TO 212-491-2040. THANK YOU.

      SUBJECT: DIRE NEED FOR AFRICAN-AMERICAN ORGANIZATIONS AND INDIVIDUALS
      VOLUNTEERS AND ASSIST IN SPECIAL CEREMONIES & REBURIAL AT AFRICAN BURIAL

      GROUND, OCTOBER 3- 4, 2003

      The world-renowned Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is
      pleased to announce special tribute and memorial ceremonies in New York
      and the appropriate reburial of 419 coffins containing the human remains

      of 419 enslaved African men, women and children to the African Burial
      Ground site in New York City. The ceremonies will be held in New York
      City (Lower Manhattan) beginning FRIDAY, OCTOBER 3 AND CONCLUDING
      SATURDAY, OCTOBER 4, 2003. Thousands of interested individuals
      celebrities and dignitaries from around the world are expected to attend

      these ceremonies. We are in dire need of volunteers and we invite
      African-American organizations and/or individuals to volunteer if it is
      practical to do so.

      BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON THE AFRICAN BURIAL GROUND

      In 1991, during the construction of a Federal office building at 290
      Broadway in Lower Manhattan, excavators unearthed the largest
      colonial-era cemetery for enslaved Africans in America. Archeologists
      carefully exhumed human remains and artifacts from the construction site

      for scientific and historical research. For the previous 200 years,
      other parts of the five-acre burial ground, where approximately 20,000
      Africans were buried, had been disregarded while buildings, streets and
      parking lots were constructed over the site.

      The remains and artifacts exhumed in 1991 have been the subject of
      scholarly research by noted archeologists, anthropologists, historians
      and the community of interested individuals. Scientific and historical
      studies lost momentum during the 1990s causing the reburial to be
      deferred. In 2002, an effort was made to reinvigorate the studies and
      facilitate the timely and dignified return of the human remains and
      artifacts to their final resting place at the African Burial Ground.
      The scientific and historical studies have documented the important
      stories of the life, culture and heritage of these enslaved Africans
      whose labor contributed to the building of New York and other American
      cities while being forced to cope with the most oppressive conditions.
      Now, in accordance with the rich traditions of African culture, the
      ceremonies for the Rites of Ancestral Return will be conducted,
      concluding with the solemn reburial at the African Burial Ground. The
      ceremonies will be held in New York City that are representative of the
      experiences and contributions of enslaved Africans in America.

      Below is the following information: a) volunteer needs from
      African-American organizations and/or individuals to actively
      participate in this important event (Please volunteer as soon as
      possible!!!), b) contact information, and c) the agenda for the 2-Day
      ceremony in New York City (in Lower Manhattan)

      Hope to see you at this prestigious event!!!!

      A. NEED FOR VOLUNTEERS
      The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is in dire need of
      African-American organizations and/or individuals to volunteer and
      actively participate in this important event (for a few or many hours)
      in the following areas:

      i. MARSHALS: responsibilities entail 1) participating in the funeral
      procession by directing pedestrian traffic flow and ensuring order and
      safety from the corner of Wall and South Street to African Burial Ground

      located at the corner of Duane Street and Broadway 2) ensuring the
      barrier is maintained from the audience and stage area during the
      ceremonies at the Wall Street and African Burial Ground (ABG) site areas


      ii. USHERS: responsibilities entail 1) distributing programs at the
      ceremonies, 2) directing dignitaries and others to the VIP seating Area
      3) collecting tickets for the seating area

      iii. WATER STATION REPRESENTATIVES: responsibilities entail providing
      water bottles to pedestrians in specified areas along the funeral
      ceremony walking traffic route

      iv. FLAG CARRIERS: carrying flags that represent each country that is
      part of the African Diaspora on the ceremonial walking route and during
      the actual ceremonies at the Wall Street and ABG site areas

      PLEASE NOTE: GROUP ORGANIZATIONS AND INDIVIDUALS ARE WELCOME TO
      VOLUNTEER AND CAN VOLUNTEER FOR ONE OR MULTIPLE VOLUNTEER POSITIONS

      B. TELEPHONE CONTACT INFORMATION
      To find out how to participate in this prestigious event or volunteer,
      call: 212-491-2040

      C. AFRICAN BURIAL GROUND CEREMONY AGENDA
      The funeral procession will transport four coffins containing the
      remains of one adult male, one adult female, one male child, and one
      female child (which are representative of the 419 deceased) as follows:

      FRIDAY, OCTOBER 3, 2003 NEW YORK, NEW YORK

      11:00 a.m. Flotilla Arrival Ceremony, embark at the foot of Wall
      Street,
      New York's colonial slave market
      12:15 p.m. Procession to the African Burial Ground Memorial Site
      1:00 p.m. Viewing and Vigil at African Burial Ground Memorial Site

      SATURDAY, OCTOBER 4, 2003 NEW YORK, NEW YORK

      10 a.m. Vigil ends
      10:30 a.m. Procession from Surrogate Courthouse to Foley Square
      11:00 a.m. Tribute Ceremony at Foley Square
      1:00 p.m. Reburial Ceremony at the African Burial Ground Memorial Site


      ###






      Laura Rice
      Associate Director
      Institute of African-American Affairs
      New York University
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      269 Mercer Street, Suite 601
      Mail Code: 0846
      New York, NY 10003
      Phone: 212-998-2134
      Fax: 212-995-4109
      E-mail: laura.rice@...


      Since its inception in 1969, the Institute of African-American Affairs
      at
      New York University has been a vibrant cultural community center
      dedicated
      to research, documentation, and the celebration of Black culture and
      creative expressions. Both the Institute and its affiliate, the NYU
      Africana
      Studies Program in the Faculty of Arts and Science, are committed to the

      study of Blacks in modernity through concentrations in Pan-Africanism
      and
      Black Urban Studies. These distinct organizations share staff and
      facilities.


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