New Orleans Public Library
African American Resource Center

Black History Month 2009
Photos from the 2009 Events

AFRICAN AMERICAN LEADERSHIP
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 28

The first of three lectures in the Black History Month African American Leadership Lecture Series began with Dr. Joe Caldwell, Associate Professor of History at the University of New Orleans, at MidCity Library. Dr. Caldwell gave a thought-provoking presentation on African American leadership during and after the Reconstruction period.


HEALTH FAIR
SATURDAY, JANUARY 31

Xavier University College of Pharmacy students tested blood pressure during the Black History Month Health Fair at Latter Library. Abraham McFarland, seated in the foreground, was the chair for this year’s committee.

Mr. Matthew Wilson is a cancer survivor and was a volunteer from the American Cancer Society at the Black History Month Health Fair at Latter Library. Laura Bevins of the New Orleans Public Library congratulates him as one of ten NOPL t-shirt winners.

New Orleans Public Library staff member Melissa Clark leads a group in yoga on the Latter Library lawn during the Black History Month Health Fair at Latter Library. Kenneth Bryan, AmeriCorps member (uppermost), joins in before teaching a dance workshop.


STORYTELLING
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 3
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 4

At the Main Library on February 3, the Kindergarten, 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classes from the Good Shepherd School enjoyed a great storytelling session from Roscoe Reddix, Jr. as part of NOPL's Black History Month programs. Mr. Reddix had all the children moving and singing with his great drumming and storytelling. One little kindergartener stole the show during the audience participation!

At the Hubbell Library (temporarily located at the Algiers Courthouse carriage house) on February 4th, some of the 3rd graders from Martin Behrman Elementary also got to enjoy a storytime from Roscoe Reddix, Jr. Some students had the opportunity to act in front of their classmates as Sister Fox and Sister Rabbit, while another student was the drummer for the traditional West African call and response song, "Che Che Kule."


AFRICAN AMERICAN LEADERSHIP
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 4

Ms. Diane Coleman presented The History of Walkertown, the second lecture of Black History Month’s African American Leadership Lecture Series at Mid City Library. Ms. Coleman offered her perspective on the African American leaders and pioneers of Walkertown, a black community on the West Bank in the New Orleans area founded around the turn of the 20th century.


HOMER PLESSY
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 5

Local author Keith Weldon Medley, along with Keith Plessy and Phoebe Ferguson, took part in a Black History Month presentation about Homer Plessy and his arrest at the Press Street Railroad station. The arrest led to the historic Plessy v. Ferguson United States Supreme Court decision legalizing the concept of "separate but equal" and the beginning of the enforcement of Jim Crow laws of segregation. The program took place at the Alvar Branch.


GENEALOGY WORSHOP
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 7

Louisiana researcher Barbara Trevigne led the Genealogy Workshop for beginners at the Main Library for Black History Month. Participants learned how to research their family genealogy by using historical documents housed in the African American Resource Center and the Louisiana Division.

Gregory Osborn of the Louisiana Division [seated] led the intermediate Genealogy Workshop at the Main Library for Black History Month. Researchers learned how to use African American Genealogical Resources found on the internet. Guest speaker Jack Belson [standing] is a long- time genealogist who informed researchers how to use Catholic resources in their genealogical searches.


LEADERS OF TOMORROW
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 10

The Rethinkers brought their innovated program of student leadership to the students of the Martin Luther King Jr. School of Science and Technology. The Rethinkers are students who are expressing their voice in the rebuilding of area schools. Their first program to bring about changes in their cafeteria was highly successful.


AFRICAN AMERICAN LEADERSHIP
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 11

The third and final lecture of Black History Month’s African American Leadership Lecture Series at Mid City Library was given by Dr. John Penny, Professor of Social Sciences at Southern University at New Orleans. Dr. Penny lectured on African American leadership since the Civil Rights era.


AFRICAN DRUM AND DANCE PROGRAM
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 18

Ivoire Spectacle, a West African drum and dance ensemble from Côte d'Ivoire, performed authentic African rhythms and movement as part of this year’s Black History Month program. Three drummers and three dancers thrilled the audience with their dynamic drumming and dance at the Martin Luther King Library.


PAUL ROBESON ACTING COMPETITION
SATURDAY, MARCH 7

The Paul Robeson Acting Competition, the final event of Black History Month, took place at the Main Library on Saturday, March 7. The winners were Roy Riley, who portrayed Spike Lee, third place; Davis Perkins, who portrayed Martin Luther King, Jr., second place; and Saadiq Holmes, who portrayed Malcolm X, first place.

The panel of professional judges included (from left to right) Carol Sutton, local star of stage, screen, and film; Chakula cha Jua, creative dramatics specialist and founder and director of Chakula cha Jua Theater Company; and Anthony Bean, founder and director of the Anthony Bean Community Theater and Acting School.


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3/17/2009