The ballot is the only safety.Frederick Douglass
Each year in February we recognize, honor and celebrate the achievements of African Americans and pay tribute to the generations of African Americans who suffered, struggled and fought for the right to become citizens and to be treated humanely and fairly in the United States.
This year we pay special tribute to the 150th anniversary of the ratification of Fifteenth Amendment, which gave African American men the right to vote (1870). While the right itself has at times not been enough to truly allow African Americans their voices, the ratification is a true and profound achievement that would not have been possible without the dedication and hard work of Frederick Douglass.
Throughout February, St. Louisans have many opportunities to honor and celebrate Frederick Douglass and many other African Americans who’ve played central roles in U.S. history with events at libraries, museums and other venues in our region. Check back here each Monday this month for a list of those events for the coming week.
Coming up this week, February 3 – 9
- February 3, 6:30 p.m. – Panel discussion at the Missouri Historical Society: Unflinching: The Power of the African American Vote
- February 5, 12:10 p.m. – Chow and Chat at Soldiers Memorial History Museum: Lest We Forget: Black Veterans at Greenwood Cemetery
- February 5, 7:00 p.m. – The Black Rep Presents “Character Building” at the Lewis and Clark Branch of St. Louis County Library
- February 7 at 7:00 p.m. – “Ghost,” a play based on the award-winning YA novel at Metro Theater Company
- February 8, 1:00 p.m. or 3:00 p.m. – Polkadots: The Cool Kids Musical at the Missouri History Museum
- February 9, 12:00 p.m. – The True and Incredible Story of Clara Brown at the Daniel Boone Branch of the St. Louis County Library
- February 9 at 2:00 p.m. – “Ghost,” a play based on the award-winning YA novel at Metro Theater Company, followed by a post-show conversation with community leaders about the relevance of the story to the lives of young people in St. Louis
- All week – The St. Louis Public Library hosts events at several of their branches
And finally, St. Louisans have access any time of the year to the following museums and historical places to learn more about African American History:
- Frederick Douglass Museum of African American Vernacular Images (by appointment only) in Saint Louis Place
- Griot Museum of Black History in North St. Louis
- Legacy of Courage: Dred Scott and the Quest for Freedom, exhibit at the Old Courthouse in downtown St. Louis
- Mary Meachum Freedom Crossing
- Missouri History Museum
- National Blues Museum in downtown St. Louis
- Scott Joplin State Historic Site on Delmar Boulevard