Friday, June 10, 2011

A Freedom’s Journey part of International Festival of Arts & Ideas in New Haven

Little Red Brick Schoolhouse Museum, supported by Widow’s Son Lodge No. 1, Prince Hall F & AM Masons at 106 Goffe St. is acting as host for a Freedom’s Journey event in the International Festival of Arts & Ideas from 2 to 5 p.m. June 12 at the Prince Hall Masonic Temple.

Writer and documentary maker David Taylor will give a slide presentation on Connecticut’s Prince Hall Masonic Leader George W. Crawford (1877-1972), a Civil Rights pioneer, organizers said in a statement.
Taylor writes for Smithsonian, The Washington Post, and other publications, the statement said. He is the author of books including "Soul of a People: The WPA Writers’ Project Uncovers Depression America" (2009, Wiley), the statement said. He wrote and co-produced the documentary film of "Soul of a People." Taylor brings to public attention the “hard work and unassailable achievements exemplified by George W. Crawford” in his freedom’s journey, the statement said.
Another presentation at the Freedom’s Journey event will tell about the history of Little Red Brick Schoolhouse Museum founded on the Connecticut Freedom Trail, the statement said.
In this freedom story, Ann Robinson will share how the museum was created to act as host to the first Connecticut Freedom Trail visitors to New Haven in 1997.
Robinson also will spotlight the role played by PGM Leroy Fitch, a prominent Prince Hall Mason in the Grand Lodge of Connecticut, Incorporated, F. & A.M., in his writing about the struggle for a decent education for children of color in the pre-Civil War history of New Haven and Connecticut, the statement said.
Robinson is professor emeritus at Gateway Community College. She is the wife of PM Charles E. Robinson, a Prince Hall Mason.

The Little Red Brick Schoolhouse Museum is located in a set aside space of Widow’s Son Lodge No. 1, Prince Hall Masonic Temple. The museum is an urban education history museum; it memorializes the New Goffe Street School, the first brick school for children of color in New Haven, 1864-1874.

The story of the drawings of Masonic symbols in the Walker Room of the Goffe Street building will be shared by Valarie Stone, the statement said. She’s an art-hobbyist who served as the local artist for the Masonic symbols shown in the privacy of the Walker Room on the second floor, the statement said. Employed by the New Haven Board of Education, Stone is pursuing a doctor of philosophy degree. She is widely known in her religious community as the first woman to serve as the chairwoman, Board of Trustees of Immanuel Missionary Baptist Church, New Haven’s oldest and largest historically Black church of the Baptist denomination, the statement said.

Moderators for the event are WM Darrell L. McClam, the current president of Widow’s Son Lodge No. 1, Prince Hall Masons, and Dr. A. G. Robinson, the statement said.
Events are free and the public is welcome. For more information, call the Little Red Brick Schoolhouse Museum Curator at 203-785-1605.
Editor's note: All information in this post was contributed.

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