Looking to the Past to Understand the Present and Build a Better Future



How is this all related? (See Below)

The Emanuel AME Church, The Liberty Tree site, the Calhoun statue and the Gadsden Wharf are all within blocks from each other. Those who dare look into the stories behind these symbols may get better insight into the present in the USA.

How can we learn from the past in order to build a better future?

People tend to look at things through their own lens and interpret events through the filter of their own biases.

How many people try to look at things through the lens of others?

I will be serving on a panel today, June 18, 2020 @ 7pm with my friend, Dr Henry Fraser to discuss some of these questions.  https://charlestoncarifest.com/announcements/carifest-virtual-summit/

The Gadsden Wharf was where most enslaved people were brought between 1806-1808 during the horrible period before the international slave trade was outlawed in the USA.  The Wharf was built and owned by Christopher Gadsden and passed to his heirs.   https://www.ccpl.org/charleston-time-machine/story-gadsdens-wharf

The former Gadsden Wharf will be the site of the new International African American Museum. https://iaamuseum.org/

Christopher Gadsden was a leader of what became violent protests against the oppression of the British government.  Meetings were believed to be at the Liberty Tree, which was located up the street from the Gadsden Wharf.  https://www.hmdb.org/m.asp?m=31852

Christopher Gadsden was a lightning rod during the build up to the American Revolution and is credited with designing the Gadsden Flag. http://www.scencyclopedia.org/sce/entries/gadsden-flag/

The Emanuel AME church was where Denmark Vesey attempted to lead an uprising against the oppression of slave owners in 1822.  He was betrayed and hanged with over 30 others and the original church was destroyed.  After the Civil War, Denmark Vesey’s son designed a new church.  It later became the site where protests were organized to fight against oppression during the Civil Rights movement.  It was targeted by a white supremacist in 2015 who murdered 9 people who had welcomed him in to pray with them. https://motheremanuel.com/history-2/

The USA was ripping apart and nearly at war with itself in the 1830s.  John C Calhoun defended the institution of slavery and was considered by many as the “Father of Secession”. The Calhoun Statue is located just a block from Emanuel AME Church in front of what was once the Citadel Military School, now the Embassy Suites. https://www.historynet.com/john-c-calhoun-the-man-who-started-the-civil-war.htm

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