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Feb 1 2007 NASHVILLE

Black History Month is celebrated in Tennessee throughout February with events ranging from sermons, lectures, films, concerts, memorial services and the milestone anniversary of Soul Music. 


Leading the Black History Month observances is the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, which has unveiled a new permanent exhibit, The Voices of Civil Rights. This project has been established to create the world's largest archive of firsthand accounts of the Civil Rights Movement. Among many other scheduled activities at the museum are the Feb.3 Hands-on Memphis presentation of the youth program Ignite the Dream, 9 a.m.-4p.m.; Feb. 9, actor and storyteller Dr. Joe Cornelius performs HATS, where he portrays the history of African Americans through the use of over a dozen different “hats”; and the Feb. 16 Amazing Grace film and panel discussion presented with Visible School at 6:00 p. m.


The Stax Museum of American Soul Music celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Stax Records and Soul Music with special exhibit SOUL SANCTUARY: Images of the African American Worship Experience, Sunday Feb. 4- Sunday April 9. The museum  will continue its 50th Anniversary celebration throughout the year with exhibits THE ART OF STAX: Essential Album Cover Photographs by Stax Photographer Joel Brodsky, Friday, June 8 - Monday, Aug. 27; and “STAX HERE AND NOW: Never-Before-Seen Current Photographs of the Stars of Stax Records” Friday, September 7 – Monday, November 26.


Remember the slaves’ arduous journey to freedom with a visit to the “Road to Emancipation” in Franklin. The exhibit gives visitors a glimpse into the African-American experience in Williamson County with tours of historic houses and downtown Franklin.


Chattanooga’s African American Museum offers a view of past struggles with the exhibit “People Who Stood Through the Storm”, featuring photographs and newspaper clippings from the Civil Rights movement.


Tennessee Tech University’s Princely Players will kick off Black History Month with a Feb. 1 performance at 7:30 p.m. in the Wattenbarger Auditorium of the Bryan Fine Arts Building. The eight-member ensemble has performed its unique program of spirituals, work songs, hymns and songs of freedom renowned venues throughout the country.

The Fisk Jubilee Singers will perform a "Rhythm in Tennessee" musical extravaganza to salute Black History Month at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 9 at the Cookeville Drama Center.

The historic film “Sparta on Parade” will be featured at the Sparta Civic Center 5p.m.-8 p.m. Feb. 24 as part of the Black History Month celebration honoring the heritage of African Americans in Sparta/White County.

Tennessee has also been the stage for several watershed historical firsts.

At the Green McAdoo Cultural Center, formerly Clinton High School in Clinton, Tenn., 12 students changed the world as they became the first to integrate a high school in the South in 1956. The Green McAdoo Cultural Center had its grand opening on August 26, 2006, 50 years after the “Clinton 12” walked through its doors.


The Emancipator and the Manumission Intelligence in Jonesborough, Tenn. were the first publications devoted exclusively to the abolition of slavery. 


The Greater Warner Tabernacle AME Zion Church was established in 1845, 20 years before the demise of slavery and is Knoxville's oldest African American church in existence today. The church is believed to have served as a station on the Underground Railroad which assisted slaves in escaping to freedom. Church services begin every Sunday at 10 a.m.


February is designated as Black History Month and is a time to recognize the vital contributions of African Americans in helping to shape our world. The impact of African Americans is part of the fabric of Tennessee and is captured year-round at world class attractions such as the Stax Museum, the National Civil Rights Museum and Fisk University.


For more African American event information, visit


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