Articles About African-American culture and history

  • 365 Project panel— Being young and black in the village

    Current and former Yellow Springs High School students spoke about racism in the local schools and how to empower local black youth at a panel discussion April 21 at AU Midwest. Panelists are, from left, Teresa Bondurant-Wagner, Cameron Henderson, Hafiz Mensah, Taylor Beck and Edward Johnson. (photos by Megan Bachman)

    In some ways, it’s harder to be young and black in Yellow Springs today than in the 1970s.

  • A lesson in black and white

    The program celebrating Black History Month was performed during the day for the K–6 student body and included a dialogue with Rosa Parks, songs by Civil Rights-era folk singer Pete Seeger, and Mills Lawn students, from left, Eliza Gilchrist, Eva Schell and Malaya Booth singing with the rest of their class. (Photos by Lauren Heaton)

    Last Friday the Mills Lawn fourth, fifth and sixth grade students performed a varied program of songs, readings, poems and a skit to celebrate the end of Black History Month.

  • Wright State professor Opolot Okia— Reexaming slavery

    Wright State professor Opolot Okia (Photo by Lauren Heaton)

    In certain eras, it has perhaps been easier to say that slavery and forced labor are wrong than to live that principle.

  • Let freedom ring

    The reverend himself joins the citizens of Yellow Springs during the MLK Day march (photo by Aaron Zaremsky)

    The streets of Yellow Springs echoed with the sounds of the civil rights movement Monday morning. Admirers of Martin Luther King Jr. chanted “We Shall Overcome” as they marched through the streets; a jovial tribute to one of the most iconic and important figures in American history. Upon the crowd’s arrival at the Central Chapel […]

  • I’ve got the Blues

    Musicians will wail into the night at the 15th annual Blues Fest, Aug. 23-25. (photo by Aaron Zaremsky)

    The AACW Blues Fest went off without a hitch last weekend at the Antioch Amphitheater.

  • Juneteenth a Scrumptious Affair

    Juneteenth pies lined up for the judges during the Juneteenth celebration

    Juneteenth celebrations included a pie contest and Motown dancing last Friday night at the Bryan Center.

  • TLT, AACW join for roots fest

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    Every year the local blues fest reminds community members about the roots of contemporary popular music. If gospel can spawn the blues, jazz, reggae and rap, then what can the art of the local community tell us about our own history and roots? African American Cross-Cultural Works and the Tecumseh Land Trust aim to find out when they put on the first ever Roots Fest on Saturday, March 27, at Bryan Community Center. It will be an evening of performances in which villagers use the arts to connect to and share their own stories.

  • Assessing the value of diversity

    For Jewell Graham, the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s were exhilarating times to live in the village. Having come to Yellow Springs as a young African-American woman with her new husband, Paul, who after graduating from Antioch had been offered a job at Vernay Laboratories, Graham was impressed with the quality of relationships between blacks and whites. Many businesses were integrated in a way unusual for the time, and a passion for the civil rights movement further brought people together. There was considerable socializing between blacks and whites in her world, as well as a sense of shared purpose.

  • Do housing costs affect diversity?

    If local diversity can be measured by the number of African Americans who live within the geographical boundaries of Yellow Springs, the village has experienced three decades of decreasing diversity, and is likely wrapping up a fourth. Since 1970, the village has lost about 500 African-American residents, mirroring a larger regional trend.

  • Village youth say race is still an issue

    Yellow Springs can be a supportive town for black youth to grow up in, according to a group of 10 current Yellow Springs High School students and recent graduates in recent interviews. But the village is not immune to the issues that tend to divide the community by color and burden some African-American families disproportionately. Instances of discrimination are very subtle, and can be unintentional, but they do occur here, the youth said, and they pose obstacles both of perception and in actual practice that young people of color are challenged to overcome.

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