(September 16, 2020) The Amherstburg Freedom Museum is Canada’s first Black National Historic Site. Amherstburg, Ontario, was a chief entry point for Underground Railroad refugees into Canada. Members of the Nazrey African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in Amherstburg added a museum to the church site in 1966 as a testament to its significance. With the construction of a new, separate building, the museum officially opened as an incorporated entity on September 20, 1981. Museum founder Melvin Simpson ‘wanted to do something tangible to increase Black awareness, to help future generations claim and develop enhanced dignity, strength and purpose of being.’ In addition to its historic buildings and displays of artifacts, the Museum is a living archive, collecting photographs and testimony from families who remained in the area.
We are honoured to bring some of them here at The Charity Report–to help celebrate the people who came to Canada through the Underground Railroad and those who seek to preserve this important part of Black history.
We extend our deep appreciation to Nneka Allen, who is co-editing an upcoming book Collecting Courage: Joy, Pain, Freedom, Love, an anthology of stories and being Black in the charity sector.
Writers to read and watch for as Black History Month draws to a close, February 27, 2020