During Black History Month, we’re leaning into the Education and Awareness pillar of our four pillars of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Last week, we were pleased to welcome Dr. Ousmane Power-Greene, Associate Professor of History at Clark University, to talk with the Quantcast team.
Hosted by one of my fellow Diversity Leadership at Quantcast leads, Rachael Cohen, Dr. Power-Greene shared incredible insights based on his studies and travels around the world and discussed the idea of the relationship between history and memory, and how the contestation of these intersect with representation.
He also highlighted that we can educate the public through monuments and memorials as representations of the past. This inspired me to discover some lesser-known monuments that celebrate Black history. In the spirit of Education and Awareness, I’ve shared my findings with our Quantcast team and, as promised, we’re extending them to you!
Here are some of the inspiring stories and people that resonated with me:
- The Old Courthouse in St. Louis is the site of the famous Dred Scott v. Sanford case and monument in recognition of Dred and Harriet Scott who filed for their freedom in 1847 and continued to battle for that freedom for more than a decade. After being denied by the Supreme Court, the ensuing public outrage was one of the leading causes of the Civil War.
- The Hallie Q. Brown Memorial in Ohio celebrates Hallie Q. Brown, an American educator, writer, and civil rights activist. She was well known for her involvement in women’s suffrage activism and helped organize the National Association of Colored Women where she served as president for four years.
- Invisible Man: a Memorial to Ralph Ellison is in New York City and honors the author best known for his novel Invisible Man which addresses many of the social and intellectual issues faced by African Americans in the early 20th century. Invisible Man earned Ellison international fame and won him a National Book Award in 1953.
- The Sojourner Truth Monument in Massachusetts celebrates this evangelist, abolitionist, women’s rights activist, and author who lived as a slave to several masters throughout New York before escaping to freedom in 1826. She preached about abolitionism and equal rights for all and became one of the world’s best-known human rights crusaders.
- The Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site in Alabama tells the story of how Booker T. Washington, born into slavery and freed at age 9, lifted himself up from nothing and converted an old cotton plantation into an institute for African Americans. Fun fact – Ralph Ellison attended the Tuskegee Institute!