On March 24, 2017 the Accokeek Foundation convened a Dialogue on Race, Agriculture, and Living History at the University of Maryland College Park in partnership with the university’s Department of American Studies. The Dialogue brought together a diverse group of fifty people in what was a day of rich discussion using the Accokeek Foundation’s National Colonial Farm and its work in Piscataway Park as a case study. This report provides an overview of the event from how it was structured and who participated to key themes that emerged and feedback that was received. Also included here are opportunities to connect to the discussion through sound. Listen to actors from dog & pony dc perform the 10-minute play “Telling the Story of a Landscape,” written specifically for this event. Immerse yourself in soundscapes created by sound artist Erik Spangler and his students from Maryland Institute College of Art using recordings from the discussions. Our goal with this report is to extend engagement beyond a single day of discussion. We hope that this will be a catalyst for many more conversations on “race, agriculture, and living history.”
Thank you to the UMD Department of American Studies for hosting and to the funders who made this event possible – Maryland Humanities and the Corina Higginson Trust. Thank you to Braden Paynter and International Coalition of Sites of Conscience; Rachel Grossman and the actor/facilitators from dog & pony dc (Ivania Stack, Jon Reynolds, DeJeanette Horne, Jordana Fraider); Dr. Erik Spangler and students from Maryland Institute College of Art; Theodore Manekin; and scholars Dr. Gail Christopher, Dr. Denise Meringolo, Dr. Gabrielle Tayac, and Dr. Psyche Williams-Forson. But above all, a deep and heartfelt “thank you” to all of the participants who embraced the process and gave so generously of their time, expertise, and life experience.
Dr. Lisa Hayes, President and CEO