"For the People Speaker Series" - Tamika Nunley presents At the Threshold of Liberty: Women, Slavery, and Shifting Identities in Washington, D.C.

February 24th, 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm

The capital city of a nation founded on the premise of liberty — 19th-century Washington, D.C. — was at the crossroads of urban slavery and abolitionist ferment leading up to the Civil War. The growing slave trade and the enactment of Black codes placed the city’s Black women within the rigid confines of a social hierarchy ordered by race and gender.

That’s the starting point for Tamika Nunley’s book At the Threshold of Liberty: Women, Slavery, and Shifting Identities in Washington, D.C. In the book, Nunley reveals how these women--enslaved, fugitive, and free--imagined new identities and lives beyond the oppressive restrictions intended to prevent them from ever experiencing liberty, self-respect, and power.

You’re invited to join Tamika Nunley for a special evening at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum on Thursday, February 24, 2022 at 7pm. The evening will not only celebrate Black History Month, but Nunley’s appearance marks the debuts of our new “For The People” Speaker Series.

You’ll learn how Nunley consulted newspapers, government documents, letters, abolitionist records, legislation, and memoirs to trace how Black women navigated social and legal proscriptions to develop their own ideas about liberty as they escaped from slavery, initiated freedom suits, created entrepreneurial economies, pursued education, and participated in political work. In telling these stories, Nunley places Black women at the vanguard of the history of Washington, D.C., and the momentous transformations of nineteenth-century America.

Plus, educators attending this program will be eligible to receive 1.5 CPDU credits.

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