Charleston begins to address black history with Robert Smalls memorial





This weekend we begin to make amends for a century of lost history. A two-day observance of Robert Smalls' life and work will be held in Charleston, marking the 150th anniversary of his heroic feat aboard the Planter. A historic marker will be placed on the Battery near the spot where Smalls seized the boat. It will be one of the few historical markers in the Holy City dedicated to an African American.

There is no final draft of history. Each generation must come to grips with its past in its own way. It must determine for itself what is important, what is real, and what is bogus....

Today, a new generation of historians is not content to challenge the old narrative of race and conflict, but is intent on a new and more inclusive narrative that will better define who we are and where we have been.

Perhaps the individual most responsible for the way Charleston is telling its story today is Michael Allen, community partnership specialist for Fort Sumter National Monument, the Charles Pinckney National Historic Site, and the Gullah/Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor....



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