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The original item was published from 5/24/2018 1:01:17 PM to 6/11/2018 12:00:01 AM.

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Hampton History Museum

Posted on: May 24, 2018

[ARCHIVED] Remembrance Day 2018 - June 9, 11 am, Buckroe Beach

Square Remembrance by Gerry Navarette

Hampton, VA- For the 7th year in a row, The Sankofa Projects will host its Annual International Day of Remembrance ceremony on Saturday, June 9, 2018 at 11:00am EST on Buckroe Beach in Hampton, VA.  The ceremony will be held to the left of the Main stage at North 1st and Pilot Avenue, at the far end of the beach.  As a lead-in to the Remembrance Day event, The Sankofa Projects will present a special lecture at the Hampton History Museum on Monday, June 4 at 7:00 pm.

“Over the nearly four centuries of the (Transatlantic) slave trade, millions of African men, women and children were savagely torn from their homeland, herded onto ships, and dispersed all over the so called ‘New World’, according to noted historian Dr. John Henrik Clarke. “What happened to those Africans who never made it off the enslavement ships alive? What about those who mutinied on the ships? What about those Africans who were cast off into the Atlantic Ocean and left to drown? Who will remember them; who will tell their story? I will.” states Chadra Pittman Walke, Founder & Executive Director of The Sankofa Projects. 

Annually since 2012, through her organization and programs, Pittman Walke has been telling their story; giving voice to this injustice and educating the public about the perilous journey of the Middle Passage which consumed the lives of so many during the Transatlantic Slave Trade.  Following a tradition of Tributes to the Ancestors spearheaded by author and activist Toni Cade Bambara, Remembrance at Buckroe Beach was born. 

“The Middle Passage is the untold and neglected chapter in the annals of slavery.  Remembrance is a spiritual ceremony and a communal gathering which honors the millions of African men, women and children who perished during the ‘Middle Passage’ and throughout the Transatlantic Enslavement Trade. Millions of Africans lost their lives and they were never given a proper burial.  Remembrance is a celebration of their lives and is the funeral these Africans never received and ensures that this untold tragedy and the millions who perished will not be forgotten.” says Pittman Walke.  

Annually, since 2012, hundreds make the pilgrimage to the city of Hampton to participate in this historic event. “Hosting Remembrance in Hampton is historically significant to the narrative of enslavement. We acknowledge the beginning of slavery in the United States at Point Comfort in 1619 and the catalyst for what would become the end of slavery with the Contraband Decision in 1861 at Fort Monroe, now, through Remembrance, we acknowledge the horror of what happened in the Middle (Passage).” says Pittman Walke.

The program of Remembrance will include a ceremonial walk around the Tree of Remembrance, Educational presentations, Traditional African dancing and drumming; Community presentations, Tributes dedicated to Native Americans/First Nations people, Bay Shore Beach and the innocent slain and Freedom Fighters who lost their lives in the global pursuit of justice, Theatrical presentations, Poetry, Meditation, and Traditional African and African American spirituals. The program features a Kemetic Opening, a Drum Call to the Ancestors, musical and dance performances and a Communal Offering dedicated to the Ancestors.                                     

At 12:00 noon an International Libation for Remembrance will be orchestrated by Baba Orimalade Ogunjimi of Ile Nago. Occurring simultaneously across the United States and internationally, Communal Libations will take place in the cities where Remembrance and Tributes to the Ancestors are held.

Our sponsors are the Hampton History Museum and the City of Hampton Parks, Recreation and Leisure Services. This event is free and open to the public. We ask that all respect the sanctity of this sacred ceremony. Traditional African attire and/or White clothing are encouraged. We suggest that you bring beach chairs and umbrellas to shade you. If you wish to participate in the Communal Offering to the Ancestors, please bring fresh flowers.


Port Hampton Lecture

“…Dying, but fighting back”: The Myth of African Docility

Hampton History Museum

Monday, June 4, 7:00-8:00 pm

Museum members free, non-members $5

In preparation for Remembrance Day 2018, join Chadra Pittman Walke, founder & executive director of The Sankofa Projects, for “…Dying, but fighting back”: The Myth of African Docility,” at the Hampton History Museum as part of their Port Hampton Lecture Series on Monday, June 4, 7:00-8:00 pm.

Nigerian author, Chinua Achebe once said that “Until the lion has its historian, the tale of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.”  In this case, Chadra is the historian, the lions are the untold stories of the African Diaspora, which have erased the contributions of African people. Chadra Pittman Walke is working diligently to change that paradigm.

Like the name of her organization, Sankofa, which translates as “reach back and fetch it,” Chadra invites you on a journey back through time   during this lecture. Travelling from the shores of Africa to today, unlearn the myths of African docility and that current events are impacted by slavery and the untold history of the Middle Passage and African Diaspora.

The lecture is free to museum members, $5 for non-members. The Hampton History Museum is located at 120 Old Hampton Lane in Downtown Hampton. There is free parking in the garage across the street from the museum. For more information call 757-727-1102.

Remembrance image courtesy of Gerry Navarette

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