Examine the current Weeksville Heritage Center site and discuss the site’s current impact on the local community, as well as identify how the current mission of the organization is continuing the legacy of Weeksville’s founding.
Intended for middle school aged students and educators
Developed for Museum Hue by Shani Perez.
By 1840, merely two years after James Weeks purchased his two lots, Weeksville, much like most of Brooklyn, was growing!
Brooklyn in 1840 was a bustling city with active docks and ferries, rivaling New York City (just Manhattan at this point) in population and economic growth. Weeksville was a community of 27 families—notably, 3 of the families were of European descent. The blossoming community prioritized not only owning land for Black men in the community to be able to vote, but also prioritized education.
Weeksville’s community opened Colored School No.2 in 1840, following the success in the launch of the African Free School (located in what is now the Fort Greene neighborhood) in 1827. Weeksville’s school would attract Junius C. Morel, an abolitionist and writer for Frederick Douglass’ The North Star. Morel would join the community in 1847 and move into the role of principal of Colored School No. 2.
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Mapping Communities: Black Enclaves in New York City from 1825 to 1950 is an interactive exploration of these two historic Black communities’ significant contributions to developing New York City’s cultural richness using narrative, timeline, videos, and curriculum. This project was made with love by Museum Hue, Allen Hillery and the DuBois Challenge, Syeda Tabassum, and Liam Elkins.
Museum Hue is the leading organization dedicated to advancing Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color in the cultural field. We have over 400 institutional members, representing cultural and academic institutions across the United States.
Rev. Audrey Williamson of AME Zion Church
Ola Baldych, Director of Design and Exhibits of Poster House
The funding for this project was made possible by Humanities NY and the Ford Foundation.
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